November 12, 2009 Smoking Meat Newsletter

Hello friends.. what an exciting month! We have split the November edition of the newsletter up into two mega letters containing everything you ever wanted to know about smoking a turkey and smoking a ham.

Last week we talked about turkey and this week.. you guessed it! We are going to discuss the smoking of ham in great detail and how to create this amazing morsel of meat that you will not be able to believe.

I don't want to keep you waiting so let's get started!

Oh, by the way, if you missed last months newsletter you can read it here.

How to Smoke a Ham – Video


How to Smoke a Ham

Purchasing the Ham
When I went to my local market to find a ham I noticed that there was a lot of variety to pick from. I opted to walk on by the water and ham product and pay just a tad more for a real ham that was not 1/3 water weight.

Just a note: anytime a meat has the word "product" after it, be very aware that you do NOT know what you are buying.

I selected an already cooked bone-in, spiral sliced ham of about 10 pounds in weight.



Keeping the Ham Fresh
To keep a ham fresh just place it in the fridge until you are ready to smoke it. Take note of the "use by" date which is usually a good while off and be sure to use it way before then.

Preparing the Ham for Smoking
Unfortunately, there is no complexity to this, you simply remove it from the package and set it aside.

Adding some Extra Flavor
You have to try this.. squeeze some prepared yellow mustard (ballpark mustard) all over the ham. Be generous with it.

Pour about 3/4 cup of my rib rub on the top of the ham and use your bare hands to massage the rub/mustard paste onto the ham.

If you need more mustard or rub feel free to use more..

Be sure to coat the flat side of the ham as well.

Getting the Smoker Ready
In my video I used the Brinkmann Smoke n' Pro horizontal smoker with a side firebox but you can easily use a vertical water smoker or even a gas or electric smoker.

My smoker will work great with straight wood or with a mixture of charcoal and wood. I opted to use 2 Weber chimneys of lump charcoal and a 3" x 6" piece of oak on the top for some good smoking action.

This combination brought the temperature up to about 230 degrees which was what I wanted to maintain.

Smoking the Ham
Place the ham directly on the grate with the flat side down. I recommend placing it about 2/3 of the way away from the firebox end to prevent any risk of the sugar in the rub burning from direct blasts of heat coming in from the firebox.

This is a problem with these type of smokers and it requires modifications to prevent this.

My heat lasted for about 1.5 hours at which time I had to add 3/4 chimney of lump charcoal to the firebox to maintain my target temperature.

I added another 3" x 6" piece of oak when the smoke stopped throughout the entire process. I ended up using 3 pieces during the 3 hour session.

Adding some Extra Zest
At the 2-1/2 hour mark, mix up a batch of my barbecue sauce and brush it on the ham liberally. For the next 30 minutes the sauce will carmelize a little on the outside of the ham and add even more flavor to an already deliciously smoked piece of meat.

If you want something really special you can make the outside look absolutely divine by adding about 1/4 cup of honey to 1/3 cup of the sauce. This will give the ham great flavor and make it super shiny on the outside i.e. it will look like it belongs on a magazine cover.


What if the Rub Tries to Burn?
This means the temperature of the smoker is too high.. try to lower the temperature of the smoker or move the ham even further from the firebox.

When is it Done?
The ham is already cooked so you do not have to reach a particular "done" temperature. In reality you only have to reach a good eating temperature. This is why it is best to keep the smoker temperature low so that the ham can get at least 3 hours of smoke without raising the internal temperature beyond about 160 degrees.

I normally do not monitor the temperature. I have found that 3 hours at 225-230 creates a great ham and I don't mess with what works.

How to Serve it?
This is entirely up to you however, I like to place the finished ham right on the table sitting on it's side. this allows everyone to tear off a slice for themselves and looks really cool sitting there whole rather than in slices on a platter.


My Famous Rib Rub Recipe and BBQ Sauce Recipe

Folks.. I never stop amazing myself at how good my rib rub is on various kinds of meat.

In preparing for this newsletter, I purchased a spiral sliced ham and rubbed it real good with mustard and generous portions of my very own rib rub. The only think I could say when I took that first bite was Oh my GOD! I probably said that about 5 times before I could regain enough composure to say something halfway intelligent;-)

I was blown away by the flavor AGAIN! I thought to myself, "I sure hope everyone can try this.. it is too good to go through life never having experienced this!"

I am not being dramatic.. just try it and you will join the ranks of those who know if I'm lying then I'm dying! This stuff is Fan-flavor-tastic and you need it in a bad-bad way;-)

Here is a few testimonies from other folks who took the plunge and are proud of it. Be sure to send my your testimony once you try it and realize that you have just tasted of HEAVEN.


Jeff,have tried the Rib Rub and Sauce recipes several times.Simply awesome. Nothing more needs to be said


I have purchased and used your Rib Rub and love it! I recommend your website to anyone who inquires how I transform a raw piece of meat into the slice of heaven currently in their mouth


I am making a lot of the rub for my kids in Tampa, Las Vegas and Denver. It is the best. They have the sauce and rave about the results.


Jeff, I have tried allot of "bottled" sauces and a few home made ones to……This stuff is GOLD! It was a big hit Labor day..


You deserve the very best and is is completely within your grasp! Only $18.95 and worth every penny. Not only do you get the best rub and sauce recipe available, you are supporting this website and helping to make sure the bills get paid so we can keep on doing what we do to teach thousands and thousands of people across the world the art of smoking meat.

Order Recipes | Sales Page

NOTE: My system is automated which means you should get a download email within MINUTES of ordering..check your spam/junk folder first then contact me to get the recipes sent to you as an attachment.

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I would love for you to join me!


In Closing

Thank you for being a part of the smoking meat family which includes the newsletter, the forum, the website and many other resources that we try to provide to help you and
countless others learn this great art.

A HUGE thank you to all of you who support the site with your donations and by purchasing the recipes and other products that we sell.

Thank you!!

Until next time.. keep smoking and God Bless.

Jeff Phillips



  1. Fehron August 2, 2017 at 7:48 pm - Reply

    Would there be any benefit or detriment to putting the rub on the day before like you would with a Boston butt?

    • Jeff Phillips August 3, 2017 at 1:44 am - Reply

      No problem at all.. might even be helpful in that the flavor has time to get into the meat a little bit.

  2. Thomas lott November 21, 2015 at 2:17 pm - Reply

    When you say flat side down, that means the cut side, right? As in the narrowest part of the ham is facing up?

    • Jeff Phillips November 24, 2015 at 6:01 pm - Reply

      Yes, the cut side is correct.

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