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Smoked ham sitting on a counter, topped with compound butter.
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Smoked Ham with Cranberry Honey Compound Butter

A delicious and flavorful spiral sliced smoked ham covered in a rich and creamy homemade cranberry honey butter. The perfect holiday ham that is smoked to perfection to grace your dinner table this holiday season!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time3 hrs
Total Time3 hrs 20 mins
Course: dinner
Cuisine: American
Servings: 8 people
Calories: 634kcal
Author: Amanda Mason


  • Smoker


For The Ham

  • 3-4 pound pre-cooked spiral ham, boneless

For The Cranberry Honey Compound Butter

  • ¼ cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 cup butter, unsalted
  • 2 Tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon water
  • 2 Tablespoons juice from a fresh orange, (optional)


To Make The Compound Butter

  • In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, add the cranberries, water, honey, and brown sugar into a small saucepan over medium heat.
  • When the liquids start to boil, use a hand held masher to start crushing the cranberries so the juice is released.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to mix the ingredients together for another 1-2 minutes.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and place the mixture in a medium size bowl to allow the content to cool, about 7-10 minutes.
  • Next, add the room temperature butter to the bowl of cooled mixture. Using a handheld mixer on low speed, combine the ingredients until well combined.
  • Using a spatula, remove the cranberry butter and place it onto a large piece of parchment paper. Divide the mixture in half and put it on plate and set aside.
  • For the remaining half of the butter that is on the paper, starting from one edge of the parchment paper, carefully roll the mixture, tucking the paper under the mixture as best you can and form into a log shape.
  • Using both hands, twist the ends on the parchment paper on both sides so it looks like a large tootsie roll. Place it in the refrigerator for a couple of hours to set.
  • Using the cranberry compound butter that you set aside earlier, apply it to the entire outside layer of the ham using either your hands or a bastings brush. Sprinkle brown sugar on top of the butter mixture.

To Smoke The Ham

  • When the smoker is prepared and pre-heated to 225°F, place the meat directly on the smoker rack.
  • Insert a digital meat thermometer into the center of the ham. Not only will this monitor the internal temperature of the meat, but if the ham is sliced it will hold each slice together so it doesn't spread open during the smoking process.
  • From there, let it smoke low and slow. There is no need to move or turn it. It's considered done when the thermometer reaches 145°F, about 2-3 hours later. 
  • Once removed from the smoker, slice the chilled cranberry honey butter and place thin butter slices in between each slice and let it melt.


  • For details on how to prepare the smoker (wood, charcoal, water pan, etc.) check out the blog post. 
  • I love a good smoked spiced ham which is why I like to use hickory wood when smoking this recipe. That's why I like to refer to this recipe as  hickory honey ham. Hickory wood is a traditional choice for smoking ham.
  • You want the butter to be at room temperature, and not melted. If it's melted, the consistency will be off and the butter will never form.
  • If you don't have an electric or standing mixer, use a whisk to mix the compound butter ingredients. 
  • If you want to spice this up even more, add some fresh chopped rosemary and fresh juice from an orange to the compound butter. You can even add a small amount of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.
  • If you're using a water pan in your smoker, add in 1 cup of apple cider vinegar to enhance the flavor to the meat.
  • When smoking ham, you want to smoke it low and slow. Keep the heat in the smoker between 225°F and 250°F.


Calories: 634kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 52g | Saturated Fat: 25g | Cholesterol: 166mg | Sodium: 2223mg | Potassium: 502mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 718IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 21mg | Iron: 1mg