Let’s talk about baked ham. It ends in Mmmmmm for a reason!
I wasn’t always such a huge fan of a baked ham. In the past I’ve tended more towards a turkey or beef roast when it comes to feeding a crowd. There are some compelling reasons why ham has recently won me over though.
First – it’s relatively inexpensive. If you’re feeding a large family or group of guests, it’s hard to beat the budget-friendly low carb baked ham for a main dish.
Secondly, baking a ham is really easy and forgiving, so even the most inexperienced of cooks can usually pull it off – whereas a turkey or roast beef can be intimidating because it can make you sick if undercooked, or be rendered almost inedible with too long in the oven. Yikes!
Not so with a low carb baked ham – it’s already fully cooked so you’re really just warming it up, and even if it goes a little long it won’t be the end of the world.
Third, a baked ham lends itself to all kinds of delicious flavor combinations that you’d be unlikely to try with beef or turkey. I’ve got two other low carb baked ham recipes here on IBIH – the Rosemary & Mustard Crusted Baked Ham and the Cherry Chipotle Baked Ham. Both are delicious but the flavor profiles couldn’t be more different from each other!
That being said, this low carb baked ham with apricot cranberry glaze is the best of the three in my opinion! I snuck some cardamom in there since I’m pretty obsessed with it lately, and the flavor was incredible.
Making this glaze couldn’t be easier – it takes just a couple of minutes using store-bought sugar free apricot preserves, raw cranberries, water, spices and sweetener.
You simmer it for about 5 minutes and then blend it all together. (An immersion blender comes really in handy for that step, but it’s not strictly necessary.)
This glaze was so good that I divided it and only used half on the ham before baking and then saved the rest to serve with it like cranberry sauce. It was AMAZING.
For this low carb baked ham recipe I chose a bone-in shank half ham. It’s got tons of great meat on it and isn’t super pricey.
Sometimes I go with a boneless ham because there is no waste and it slices and serves more easily, but I really wanted that ham bone to make some soup with – I’ll post that recipe next week along with some other great low carb recipes for leftover ham!
This low carb baked ham is shown above served with my new Creamed Kale with Bacon & Walnuts and low carb Butternut & Fennel Gratin – those two recipes will go up later this week so stay tuned!
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- 1 Shank Half Ham, approximately 10 lbs.
- 1 cup raw cranberries
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar free + fiber apricot preserves (I used Polaner)
- 2 Tbsp granulated sugar substitute (I used Swerve)
- 1 tsp ground cardamom
- 1/2 tsp tangerine zest
- Combine the cranberries, water, and jam in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 – 7 minutes or until the cranberries have burst and the liquid is thick and bubbling.
- Blend with an immersion blender or in a magic bullet and add the sweetener, tangerine zest, and cardamom and stir well.
- Reserve half the sauce and set aside for serving.
- Place the ham in a roasting pan and add about 2 cups of water to the bottom. Score the fat on the ham in a diamond pattern if desired.
- Brush the ham generously with the glaze. If you have some left save it to baste the ham halfway through baking.
- Bake the ham for 1 1/2 to 2 hours at 350 degrees (F) or until a thermometer inserted in the center reads 140 degrees.
- Let your ham rest for 15 minutes before carving.
- Serve the ham with the reserved cranberry sauce.