Simple Slow Cooked Ham in Cola

The inspiration behind this recipe began a few years back when I was gifted a copy of Nigella Bites.  I love this recipe book as it contains some slightly unusual combinations of food which appeal to my adventurous nature.

Nigella’s recipe is time and ingredient consuming and the side dish of sweetcorn pudding is a little ingredient intense and too sweet for my liking (as well as not very frugal and quite calorific!) – so as I am a simple girl at heart I have simplified it and think my version is an acceptable short-cut.

Simple Slow Cooked Ham in Cola with Scrambled Egg and Sweetcorn – Serves 4

You will need:

1 x Standard Slow Cooker

1 x Unsmoked Gammon Joint approx. 700grams (or in US Ham – Britons call it gammon until cooked for some reason)

1 x 1Ltr of Cola (Full Fat not Diet – I would buy 2ltrs the first time you try it as you may not have quite enough depending on the size of your slow cooker and joint)

Honey or Syrup to spread over the joint and a teaspoon of Brown Sugar

Mustard Powder (optional)

6-8 Eggs and a can of Sweetcorn


1. Firstly watch out for that pesky layer of plastic that they wrap around some joints.  The amount of times I have cooked this and then realised the plastic is still on is actually embarrassing.

2. Place Gammon/Ham on a baking tray and cook  in a conventional oven for 10 minutes on High.

3. Then place joint in the slow cooker and arrange 1 onion that has been cut into quarters around it.

4. Pour over approx. 1 ltr of Cola.  If you are using a standard cooker and your joint is the same size as mine, 1ltr should 2/3rds fill the cooker, leaving the top exposed.  Slow cookers should not be filled anymore than 2/3rds.

5. Place lid on top and leave on high for 4 hours (based on a joint of approx. 700g) or until you are happy the meat is cooked and piping hot throughout. Use a meat thermometer to test internal temperature if you are at all unsure.

6. Remove joint carefully and spread a thin layer of honey or syrup over the meat.  This may seem a little vague but seriously I would use whatever you have in the storecupboard, honey or golden syrup, even maple syrup may work – who knows give it a try!  Nigella’s recipe specifies black treacle, but after I only used it once and it was left to deteriorate in my cupboard I simplified the recipe.  I don’t like kitchen clutter or unnecessary waste – I use ingredients that have multi use – and for me black treacle wasn’t one of them.

7. Then spread on approx. half a teaspoon of mustard powder (optional – if you have it and if the kids like it) , and then sprinkle on a little brown sugar and smooth over.  Taking care of course as the meat will be hot.

8. Place coated meat uncovered on a baking tray in a hot oven for 10 minutes.

9. Whilst the meat is cooking prep your eggs.  Add all eggs to a bowl or jug and beat, then add the can of drained sweetcorn and mix. Leave to stand.

10. Remove meat from oven and leave to rest before carving.

11. Whilst meat is resting, heat a non-stick pan with a little oil and scramble the eggs in the usual way.

12. Leave eggs in pan whilst carving meat, place meat on pre-warmed plates and add eggs – then eat!

Nigella’s version of this recipe is amazing so I would recommend it for special occasions and when you have time to watch over it as it isn’t cooked in a slow cooker.

I also suggest you take a look at this book if you would like to try your hand at a ‘not very simple’ Chocolate and Lime Cheesecake that tastes fantastic.  I learnt a very valuable lesson when I first made the cheesecake – that is to read the whole recipe through before attempting.  It was a bit of a surprise when I got to the bit where I had to cook the cake in a ‘water bath’ inside the oven!  There was I dashing to neighbours houses looking for a roasting tin that would do the job!


n.b – there are No affiliate links in this post

p.s – if you do have some unused cola left over and do not know what to do with it then pour it down the toilet.  It’s a well-known fact Cola is a fantastic loo cleaner!

n.b – as always when slow cooking meat ensure that it is piping hot and cooked throughout.  If you are in any doubt use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature before eating.

Top Tip – Any leftovers, wrap well and refrigerate immediately – it will make lovely ham sandwiches with a sliver of mustard. Use within 48 hours (preferably asap) and do not reheat.

Spread the word and let’s start a Slow Cooker revolution!

* Please note that I am not a qualified nutritionist or professional cook.  My recipes are what I put together at home and all amounts etc… are approximate. What I write is my own experience of cooking the recipe.  Ovens and ingredients do vary – just go with it,  have fun and apply common sense at all times!  Practise makes perfect!

If you have tried this recipe please do let me know how it goes (or if you can improve on it) in the comments below.

{ 24 comments… add one }
  • Saff March 21, 2011, 9:19 am

    hi. this recipe sounds Yummy . i will be giving it a try this weekend. I’ll let you know how i get on

  • Saff March 21, 2011, 9:19 am

    hi. this recipe sounds Yummy . i will be giving it a try this weekend. I’ll let you know how i get on

  • Saff March 21, 2011, 9:19 am

    hi. this recipe sounds Yummy . i will be giving it a try this weekend. I’ll let you know how i get on

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