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Christmas Ham Help

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Need some help with doing a Christmas Ham -

I have several/multiple questions:

1.  A Christmas ham is the shank portion of a picnic ham?

2.  Do you buy them uncooked/unsmoked?  (I've read the thread on Bear's Twice Smoked Hams)

3.  If uncooked, should they be brined?  If so for how long?

4.  What temp to smoke them at?  225F?  Higher/Lower?

5.  What internal temp to cook it to?

6.  What woods are recommended? (I have a stick burner)

7.  Is there a rough rule of thumb to use?  ie..."X" time per pound? ( I know it's a rough idea)


Is there anything else I need to know?

Hoping to make a test smoke on Thursday.....


I've cooked briskets, butts, ribs, turkeys, etc.... but never a Christmas Ham...

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

post #2 of 7
check this out and it will explain the different ham cuts http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/a/pork-meat-selection-and-processing

I buy the cooked and smoked hams. I then smoke them again for a double smoke. The last 2 I have purchased were boneless carver hams from Costco and they came out great.

I cook mine at 225-250 for about 2-3 hrs until it gets to 140 IT. This can take longer depending on the size but 2-3 has been good for me.

For the wood I use hickory or a fruit wood. I stay away from the more harsh woods with the hams.

Good luck
post #3 of 7


Brian gave you good info.

I'll just add a little:


If it's already been cooked & smoked, you should not brine (cure) it again.


As for the smoking temp, I like to use 200° for most of the cook to give it more time to smoke, but 225°-250° is fine.


As for the finished IT, I take it to 145° (Normal Pork Temp), unless there is something else that came with it saying something different, like below:


When I did 4 of them, they had this note in the package with the Hams.

I still took these to 140°, because I think 130° is a little low:


Here's 3 of my Double Smoked Hams:


4 Hams:

2 Hams:
1 Ham:
post #4 of 7

Thanks to Mr. Bear, I double smoke ALL my cured meats now! People go crazy for it. Going for a slight smoking twice vice a heavy smoking once is the only way to go. Its definately what I would recommend to anyone. besides its a much safer smoke because of the short smoking cycle and the lower temps.


Smoke that hummer twice then heat it in the oven for the party! But know, you'll have to do it again and again, and again, and again. Hope you love ham!

post #5 of 7
WARNING.........if you start double smoking ham........it will be like your first smoke..........addicted for life.

post #6 of 7

Just a little tip from me. After you double smoke your ham and slice it . Get a jar of pepper jelly and heat it up to thin it out. pour this on the slices of ham.

post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all the replies!  You all are fantastic!

I held off smoking a test one til I had more time, and more chance to read & absorb the info shared here.

Hoping to test one some time next week!


Still looking info for uncooked shanks if anyone has any....

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