How to Cook Fresh Picnic Ham

Written by carol taber
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How to Cook Fresh Picnic Ham
Freeze leftovers for quick meals in the future. (grilled cabage with ham image by Tomo Jesenicnik from

A picnic ham is a cut of pork taken from the shoulder of a pig. It is technically not a ham. Ham by definition is cut from the upper part of a pig's hind leg. A picnic ham also called a picnic shoulder is an inexpensive alternative for a true ham when making casseroles or soups. How much picnic ham you will need for a meal depends if the ham is bone-in or not. If it is a bone-in picnic ham, plan on at least a 3/4 of a pound of meat per serving. For a boneless ham allow 1/4 to 1/3 of a pound per serving.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • 5- to 8-pound picnic ham
  • Crock pot
  • 2 cups of liquid: apple or orange juice or chicken broth
  • Instant-read thermometer
  • Platter
  • Aluminium foil

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  1. 1

    Set the ham in the crock pot.

  2. 2

    Pour the two cups of liquid over the ham. Place the lid on the crock pot.

  3. 3

    Cook one hour on high. This will get the temperature of the crock pot high enough to thoroughly cook the ham.

  4. 4

    Turn the crock pot temperature to low and cook for six to eight hours. The picnic ham is fully cooked when its internal temperature reaches 71.1 degrees Celsius.

  5. 5

    Remove the ham from the crock pot and set it on a platter on the counter. Cover it lightly with aluminium foil. Let the ham rest for 10 minutes. It is now ready to serve.

Tips and warnings

  • You can add other spices and seasonings when you add the liquid in step 2. A 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon and a 1/8 teaspoon of nutmeg are nice additions when using a sweet liquid like apple juice. One envelope of onion soup mix adds more flavour to your ham when combined with a savoury liquid like chicken or vegetable broth.

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