Tender, juicy & SUPER easy to make, Instant Pot Ham is the best ham you’ll ever cook! Tangy apricot glaze makes this ham a holiday favorite!
With the holidays right around the corner, you may be starting to think about what to cook for your family. Well, in our house the answer is always a delicious ham. We typically choose from one of these tried and true 25 Holiday Ham recipes, but this year I’m taking an easier route and making instant pot ham! Topped with a delicious apricot and honey glaze, this ham is cooked and ready in an hour, leaving you plenty of time to celebrate the holiday with your family!
INSTANT POT HAM
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For some families, a holiday meal means a turkey cooked in the oven all day. For others, like the little Who’s down in Whoville, it means a huge roast beef. In my family however, we are BIG fans of a baked ham with a delicious fruit glaze on nearly every holiday.
One thing I hate about cooking hams though is how much space (and time) they take up in the oven. Much like roasting a turkey, baking a ham takes hours which can really cramp your cooking style. No room in the oven for pies, roasted potatoes cook at a completely different temperature… you know those typical holiday cooking woes. That’s why I’ve decided that this year, I’ll be cooking ham in an instant pot!
This instant pot ham recipe is incredible for SO many reasons.
First of all, the taste is perfection. Glazed with apricot jam and Dijon mustard, you’ll love the sweet and salty flavors mixed together.
Second (and most importantly to a busy holiday hostess), it takes 30 minutes to cook in the instant pot and 30 minutes for the pressure to release. That’s it! You’ve got yourself a perfectly cooked holiday main dish!
Are All Hams Pre-Cooked?
The short answer to this question is, no. Not ALL hams are pre-cooked. However, most hams you find in your typical grocery store are cured or smoked, meaning yes, they are pre-cooked. Any cooking you do on these types of hams is simply to warm it up and add in flavor.
If you have a “fresh ham” however, you need to be sure that you are cooking your meat to an internal temperature of at least 145 degrees. That way you know that it is fully cooked and safe to eat.
When I’m cooking ham in the instant pot, I always use a pre-cooked ham. I do this for a few reasons – first, it’s easier! I know that the meat is fully cooked already, I’m just re-heating it and adding in some delicious flavor. And second, because a pre-cooked ham is super easy to find.
What is the Best Way to Cook a Pre-Cooked Ham?
So, you’ve found yourself with a pre-cooked ham. There are a couple different things you can do with it. First, because it is fully cooked, ham can be eaten as-is! Slice it up cold and have yourself a delicious sandwich or chilled meat dish.
I personally think that the best way to cook a pre-cooked ham is to give it a nice fruit-based glaze. Many people love a pineapple glaze or a cranberry glaze works great too. The contrast of the sweet fruit with the salty meat is mouth watering.
Whether you’re baking your pre-cooked ham in the oven or cooking ham in the instant pot, a fruit glaze will help to seal in the moisture to the meat and give it a nice crisp crust on the outside.
A traditionally baked ham (in the oven) takes a long time, but instant pot ham cooking time is under an hour. Plus, because the instant pot relies on pressure and steam, there is nowhere for the moisture of the ham to escape. If you cook a pre-cooked ham in the instant pot, your meat is guaranteed to be moist and delicious!
Ingredients for Instant Pot Ham
Bone in ham – Whenever I make any sort of baked ham, I always use a bone-in ham. Yes, I know that a boneless ham is much easier to cut, and a seven pound ham goes a lot further serving wise.
However, leaving the bone intact for cooking allows for the meat to become much more flavorful. Plus, you can always use your ham bone for making leftover ham soup or ham stock! If you’d prefer an easier cut though, a boneless ham will work just fine!
Apricot Jam – Most baked ham recipes will have you glaze your ham with some kind of fruit. A glaze helps to keep the moisture in the meat (nobody likes a dry piece of ham….) and it helps to offset the saltiness of the ham with a touch of sweetness!
This instant pot ham recipe calls specifically for apricot jam. The apricot jam gives the ham a unique flavor that when combined with Dijon mustard and honey creates a decadent glaze that will leave your tastebuds begging for more!
Can You Cook Ham in an Instant Pot?
The answer is, of course you can!!! You can practically cook anything in an instant pot, that’s why it’s one of my favorite kitchen appliances! The cooking time for pressure cooker ham is significantly less than a traditional baking method. I am ALL about saving time! Here’s how to do it:
- Start by patting your ham dry. This helps to remove any excess liquid before you put on your sweet apricot glaze!
- Next, put the ham in the instant pot, face down.
- Pour 1 cup of chicken broth into your instant pot. I recommend moving your ham around a bit as you do this so the broth can get under the ham.
- Now time to start working on your glaze! In a small bowl, mix together your apricot jam, Dijon mustard, honey, and lemon juice
- Pour your apricot-y goodness mixture over the ham. Make sure to cover your whole ham as best as you can, every piece deserves some yummy glaze!
- Now it’s time to sit back, relax, and let your instant pot work its magic. Set your timer to manual (high pressure) for 30 minutes. Make sure the valve is set to sealing or all the pressure will be released and that’s not what you want!
- Once the timer goes off, let your pressure cooker naturally release function for 30 minutes.
- Remove the ham to a cutting board, slice, and enjoy!
Looking for some more delicious main dish ideas? Check out these other holiday dinner recipes!
- Instant Pot Pork Chops
- Slow Cooker Cranberry Chicken
- Cranberry Glazed Spiral Ham
- Instant Pot Chicken Breast
- Riesling Peach Glazed Ham
- more MAIN DISH recipes…
Tools used to make this Instant Pot Ham recipe
Instant Pot: We use our instant pot for SO many recipes. If you don’t already have one, I highly recommend getting one!
Meat thermometer: Whenever you’re cooking meat, it’s important to check the internal temperature to make sure it’s fully cooked!
- Remove ham from package and pat dry with paper towels. Put ham face down into your Instant Pot.
- Pour chicken broth into the Instant Pot. Lift up the ham a little so the broth gets under it too.
- In a small bowl, mix together jam, lemon juice, mustard, and honey. Pour mixture over the ham. Use the back of a spoon to spread glaze all over the ham.
- Lock Instant Pot lid in place and set time for manual (high pressure) for 30 minutes. Set valve to sealing.
- Once the cooking time has finished, let the pressure naturally release for 30 minutes. You can quick release any remaining pressure before opening the lid.
- Transfer ham to a cutting board and slice. Serve warm.