Perfectly Smoked Ham with Delicious Apple-Riesling Sauce

Are you searching for a show-stopping, mouth-watering centerpiece for your next holiday dinner? Look no further than this Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce recipe! The combination of salty, smoky ham and sweet, tangy apple-riesling sauce is sure to delight your taste buds and impress your guests.

Not only is this dish delicious, but it’s also incredibly easy to prepare. If you already have a pre-smoked ham on hand (or purchase one from your local grocery store), all you need are a few simple ingredients to make the flavorful sauce. With only 20 minutes of active preparation time and minimal cooking required, you’ll have plenty of time to focus on other aspects of your meal prep.

But don’t let the simplicity fool you – this dish packs some serious flavor. The apple-riesling sauce is made with fresh red apples, dry riesling wine, honey mustard, and aromatic spices like hot paprika and scallions. Whether you’re preparing it for a special holiday occasion or just want to elevate your weeknight dinner game, this ham recipe is sure to please.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Smoked Ham With Apple-Riesling Sauce
Smoked Ham With Apple-Riesling Sauce

Gather around, foodies! I have a recipe that is guaranteed to blow your mind. Are you a fan of smoky, succulent ham? Do you love the sweet and tangy taste of apples? How about the crisp, refreshing flavors of Riesling wine? Well then, my friends, this Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce recipe is an absolute must-try for you.

Picture sitting around the holiday table, the aroma of the ham wafting through the air. Now imagine taking a bite of perfectly smoked ham that melts in your mouth and touches your soul. Add to that the rich and flavorful Riesling sauce with tender chunks of sweet apples that acts as a dipping sauce to enhance every bite. Can you taste it yet?

But wait, there’s more! This recipe isn’t just delicious; it’s also incredibly easy to make! With only a few simple ingredients and 20 minutes of prep time per pound of bone-smoked ham, you can have an unforgettable meal on your table in no time.

If you want to impress your family or guests during the holiday season or any occasion that calls for a mouth-watering meal, this Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce will do exactly that. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to savor and enjoy flavors that will leave your taste buds craving for more!

Ingredient List

 When in doubt, put an apple on it.
When in doubt, put an apple on it.

Ingredient List

Smoked Ham: You can use bone-in or boneless smoked ham for this recipe. A bone-in smoked ham will add extra flavor to the sauce, but it will also require longer cooking time.

Red Apples: We will need red apples to make the apple-riesling sauce. Make sure to choose a type of apple that is sweet and firm, like Honeycrisp or Braeburn.

Riesling Wine: The key ingredient for the sauce is a bottle of Riesling wine, preferably dry. It’s important to choose a good quality Riesling that you would enjoy drinking, as the flavor of the wine will be prominent in the sauce.

Water: We need 2 cups of water for the sauce.

Unsalted Butter: 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter will be used to sauté the scallions and apples for the sauce.

Scallions: 4-5 scallions, chopped, will add a savory flavor to the sweet apple-riesling sauce.

Calvados (Optional): A splash of Calvados, an apple brandy from Normandy, can enhance the apple flavor in the sauce, but it is optional.

Honey Mustard (Optional): Some people like to glaze their ham with honey mustard before baking, so we have included an optional ingredient.

Optional Ingredients

  • Calvados
  • Honey Mustard

The Recipe How-To

 A perfect balance of smoky and sweet.
A perfect balance of smoky and sweet.

Step 1: Prep the Smoked Ham

To start the recipe, I preheat the oven to 325°F. Then, place the smoked ham (already smoked, bone-in, 18-pound bone smoked ham with skin removed and fat scored in a crosshatch pattern) in a large roasting pan. Tightly foil the roasting pan with aluminum foil and bake it in the oven.

Step 2: Cook Applewood Smoked Ham

While the ham is baking, I cook applewood smoked ham (stuffed pork) in a separate pan over medium-high heat. I add unsalted butter, salt, and hot paprika, mixing it frequently for approx. 20 minutes or until it’s crispy on all sides.

Step 3: Make Riesling Mustard Glaze & Apple-Riesling sauce

In another pot, I prepare the Riesling mustard glaze and apple-riesling sauce. The recipe calls for red apples, Calvados, scallions,rossly chopped, brown sugar, a bottle of dry riesling wine, and some other ingredients that make up the fantastic flavors of this dish.

To make the apple-riesling sauce, simply bring all ingredients — two cups water and one bottle riesling preferably dry, as well as pieces of smoked ham bone/scraps — to a boil in a pot. Reduce heat; simmer until liquid has reduced to two cups approximately 1 hour.

Step 4: Glaze The Ham With Mustard Sauce

Next, I apply some of the Riseling mustard glazes into the scored crosshatch pattern and coat generously with mustard. Then, place sliced apples around/smoked ham apple peppered with cider vinegar for added flavor.

Step 5: Baste the Ham

When the ham has about 30 minutes to bake, I open the oven and baste it with the apple-riesling sauce. Repeat every ten minutes till ready.

Step 6: Check Temperature

When cooking is complete, I suggest removing from the oven, let it rest for 15-minutes before cutting. It helps develop rich flavors and allow juices to remain inside; this way, you can savor every bite filled with moist ham and tangy-sweet Apple-Riesling sauce. Try pairing with Riesling Sangria for a perfect finish!

Substitutions and Variations

 This sauce will have you questioning every other sauce.
This sauce will have you questioning every other sauce.

Looking to switch things up with your smoked ham apple riesling recipe? Here are some substitutions and variations to try:

– Calvados instead of Riesling: If you’re looking for a more intense apple flavor, swap out the Riesling for Calvados, a French apple brandy. This will give the sauce a richer, fruitier taste.

– Hot paprika instead of scallions: If you’re not a fan of scallions or just want to add some heat to your dish, sprinkle in some hot paprika in the sauce.

– Brown sugar instead of honey mustard: If you prefer your ham on the sweeter side, use brown sugar instead of honey mustard in your glaze. This will bring out the natural sweetness of the ham and complement the apple and Riesling flavors.

– Other smoked meats: While this recipe calls for smoked ham, you can also use other types of smoked meats like pork tenderloin or even duck breast. Just adjust the cooking time based on the weight.

– White wine instead of Riesling: If you don’t have Riesling on hand or prefer a different white wine, feel free to use whatever you have available. Just keep in mind that different wines may affect the final flavor of the sauce.

– Add spices: To customize your sauce even further, experiment with adding different spices like cinnamon or cloves. These warm spices will highlight the apple and smoked flavors in the dish.

No matter which substitutions or variations you choose to make, remember to have fun with it and make it your own!

Serving and Pairing

 Who knew Riesling could make such a great sauce?
Who knew Riesling could make such a great sauce?

This smoked ham with apple-riesling sauce recipe is perfect for the holiday season. The combination of smoky and sweet flavors makes it a crowd-pleaser, and the apple-riesling sauce adds a touch of sophistication.

When it comes to serving, I recommend slicing the ham thinly and arranging it on a platter. Drizzle some of the apple-riesling sauce over the ham, and use the rest as a dipping sauce on the side. You can also serve the sauce separately in a small gravy boat.

As for pairing, this recipe goes well with a variety of wines. A dry riesling wine works perfectly as it complements the sweetness in the sauce while holding its own against the smoky ham. However, if you prefer red wine, try pairing it with a pinot noir or a light-bodied merlot. If you’re looking for a non-alcoholic option, sparkling apple cider also pairs well with this dish.

In terms of sides, roasted or mashed potatoes make an excellent accompaniment to balance out the sweetness of the sauce. Roasted vegetables, such as carrots or Brussels sprouts, also complement this dish nicely.

Overall, this smoked ham with apple-riesling sauce recipe is a fantastic addition to any holiday feast or special occasion. Its unique flavor profile makes it stand out from other traditional holiday dishes, making it a must-try recipe for any food enthusiast.

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 This ham will be the talk of the dinner party.
This ham will be the talk of the dinner party.

The Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce recipe is perfect for those who want to make things ahead. You can cook the ham one or two days before the event, store it in the refrigerator, and reheat it on the day of your celebration. It could alleviate your stress on busy holidays and will give you more time to enjoy your company.

To make this dish ahead of time, allow the cooked ham to cool down to room temperature, wrap it tightly in foil, and place it in the refrigerator. This will keep the ham moist and juicy while preventing any bacteria growth. The apple-riesling sauce could also be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.

When reheating smoked ham, you want to be careful not to dry out or overheat it. Place your smoked ham in a roasting pan with about 1/4 cup of water and tightly cover it with foil. Preheat your oven to 325F, and then reheat for about 10 minutes per pound. For example, an 18-pound bone smoked ham would take about 180 minutes to reheat.

Once heated through, remove foil from the ham skin and baste it lightly with pan juices. Put back into the oven uncovered for another 15-20 minutes, or until the internal temperature registers at least 140 degrees F when measured in thickest part of the meat with a meat thermometer.

With these easy Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating steps for your smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce recipe, you can save time without sacrificing flavor. Enjoy!

Tips for Perfect Results

 Your taste buds will thank you.
Your taste buds will thank you.

To achieve the best taste and presentation of the Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce, here are some useful tips that will guarantee perfect results.

First, keep in mind the cooking time for a smoked ham. Typically, it takes around 20 minutes per pound to cook an already smoked bone-in ham. Therefore, if you are using an 18-pound bone smoked ham, it should take roughly six hours to cook.

Before placing the ham in the roasting pan, remove the skin and as much fat as possible. The fat can be scored with crosshatch patterns to allow the sauce to penetrate better. Pour two cups of water and one bottle of Riesling wine, preferably dry, into the roasting pan with the smoked ham bone.

To add more flavors to your holiday ham Riesling, make a mustard glaze with Dijon mustard and Riesling wine or an apple-mustard sauce with apple cider vinegar and honey. Brush it over the ham in the last hour of cooking for a perfectly caramelized exterior.

To prevent overcooking, tightly foil bake the stuffed pork tenderloin at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30-40 minutes per pound or until it reaches an internal temperature between 145-160 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lastly, when preparing the Riesling Sangria recipe, choose a fruity and flavorful Riesling wine for added aromas of apricots and peaches. For a refreshing twist, substitute white wine for the Riesling wine.

By following these tips, you can make sure that your Smoked Ham with Apple-Riesling Sauce will be a show-stopper on any special occasion.


Now, let me answer some frequently asked questions to help you make this smoked ham with apple-riesling sauce recipe successfully the first time and every time.

How long to cook applewood smoked ham?

To heat ham, wrap it tightly with foil and cook for 20 minutes per pound until it reaches an internal temperature of 120°F. Be careful not to overheat the ham, as this will cause the natural juices to evaporate and dry out the meat.

Can you glaze a already smoked ham?

If you aim to impress your guests with richer taste and more diverse consistency, it would be wise to incorporate a coating to your already smoked and pre-cooked ham bought from any known supermarket.

How to cook applewood smoked spiral sliced ham?

After taking off all the wrapping, your ham should be ready to cook. To prepare it for cooking, you’ll want to put it in a roasting pan, making sure that half hams are placed flat side down. To keep the heat in, cover the pan firmly with aluminum foil. For the best result, bake the ham at 275°F for about 15 minutes per pound until it’s heated through.

How to prepare smoked cooked ham?

When it comes to reheating ham, ensuring that it doesn’t become dry is essential. To achieve this, one effective method is to set the ham on a rack positioned inside a roasting pan. Pour some water into the base of the pan and ensure that the entire arrangement is enveloped with foil, closing it tightly. Set the oven to 325F, and cook for around 16 to 20 minutes for every pound of ham. The suitable temperature is attained when the meat thermometer demonstrates 135F.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, it’s not just the smell of this delicious smoked ham apple riesling recipe that will make your guests’ mouths water. The flavors are heavenly, and the texture is just right. From the perfectly cooked ham to the savory apple riesling sauce, every aspect of this dish is top-notch.

Furthermore, what pairs better with a holiday ham than a bottle of dry Riesling wine? The flavors complement each other perfectly, making it an ideal match for this dish. If you’re looking to take your next holiday dinner up a notch, serve your smoked ham with apple-riesling sauce and Riesling wine.

The recipe is easy to follow, and the ingredients can be easily substituted or altered to fit your preferences. It’s versatile enough to be used for anything from Thanksgiving dinner to a summer barbecue party.

So why not try out this recipe for yourself? It’s guaranteed to impress your family and friends, and you might just start a new tradition in your household. Don’t hesitate; grab that smoked ham bone and get cooking!

Smoked Ham With Apple-Riesling Sauce

Smoked Ham With Apple-Riesling Sauce Recipe

Recipe by Marcia Kiesel published in Food & Wine Dec 2008.
No ratings yet
Cook Time 3 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine European/American
Calories 898 kcal


  • 18 lbs bone-in smoked ham, skin removed and fat scored in a crosshatch pattern
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle riesling wine, preferably off-dry
  • 6 red apples, cored and skin peeled in stripes (such as Paula Red or Empire halved)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 scallions, coarsely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon hot paprika
  • 2 tablespoons calvados
  • salt


  • Preheat the oven to 325°. Set the ham fat side up in a large roasting pan. Add the water to the pan and bake for 2 hours.
  • Pour the wine over the ham. Roast for 30 minutes. Increase the oven to 350°. Baste the ham and arrange the apples around it. Roast for 35 minutes; baste once more. Remove the apples, then peel and chop.
  • Bake the ham for 1 hour and 15 minutes, basting frequently, until an instant-read thermometer registers 170°. Transfer to a carving board; let rest for 15 minutes.
  • Strain the pan juices into a bowl and skim off the fat. In a deep skillet, melt the butter. Add the scallions and paprika; cook over moderately high heat until the scallions are softened. Add the Calvados. Using a long match, carefully ignite the Calvados; let the alcohol burn off. Add the apples and pan juices and cook until the apples are just heated through. Season the sauce with salt. Carve the ham and serve with the sauce.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 509gCalories: 898kcalCarbohydrates: 12.7gProtein: 94.8gFat: 48.8gSaturated Fat: 16.6gCholesterol: 284.2mgSodium: 7062.9mgFiber: 1.1gSugar: 4.7g
Keyword < 15 Mins, Apple, For Large Groups, Fruit, Ham, High In..., High Protein, Meat, Pork, Very Low Carbs
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