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Pineapple Sauce Recipe

Brown sugar, pineapple, and flavorful vinegar come together to create this pineapple sauce for ham. It’s a sweet and tangy add-on for the classic glazed ham recipe you all know and love. 

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Pineapple sauce drizzled over glazed ham slices

This Pineapple Sauce Recipe will be the perfect addition to your next holiday dinner!

Glazed ham is one of those simple recipes that I always go back to. Sometimes I make it for holiday parties, but it’s just as wonderful for a cozy Sunday dinner. I have so many special memories of sitting around a table with my loved ones. Glazed ham has made an appearance on more than one occasion! 

I’m always looking for ways to mix up my favorite recipes. Enter this pineapple brown sugar sauce for ham! I’m a huge fan of pairing sweet and salty flavors together, which is why I came up with this recipe.

Some people enjoy a smooth pineapple sauce, almost like a gravy. I personally prefer mine with a few chunks. I find that the pieces of fruit add extra little bursts of flavor to the sauce.

If you’re looking for a new way to enjoy a glazed ham dish, consider serving this sweet pineapple sauce for ham on the side. It can be the centerpiece for making your own memories around the table! 

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I love pairing this pineapple sauce with my frozen ham in the Instant Pot and Air Fryer Ham recipes!

pineapple sauce for ham in jar

Pineapple Ham Sauce Recipe Ingredients

  • Canned pineapple
  • Water
  • Cornstarch
  • Brown sugar
  • Butter
  • Apple cider vinegar

What Can You Substitute Pineapple Juice With For Ham? 

If you’re not a fan of sweet pineapple sauce for ham, or if someone in your house has an allergy, there are some replacements you can use. 

Orange juice is the most popular solution, as it has a similar taste to pineapple. Their flavors aren’t identical, but they both feature that winning combination of sweet and sour that goes so well with ham!

prepared ingredients for pineapple sauce for ham

How to Make Pineapple Sauce for Ham 

A full printable version of this recipe with ingredient measurements is available at the bottom of this post.

STEP ONE: In a colander set over a medium saucepan, drain the crushed pineapple and set it aside. 

STEP TWO: Add water to the excess pineapple juice that has been collected in the medium saucepan. Whisk in the cornstarch until it’s dissolved and smooth. 

STEP THREE: Add the brown sugar and crushed pineapple, then set the saucepan over medium heat. 

STEP FOUR: Bring the mixture to a boil while stirring frequently for 2-3 minutes, or until thickened. 

mix together ingredients in saucepan for pineapple sauce for ham

STEP FIVE: Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the butter and apple cider vinegar. Serve as a glaze with ham, and enjoy!

pineapple sauce drizzled on slices of glazed ham

How Do You Thicken Pineapple Juice?

You can thicken pineapple juice by using cornstarch. In fact, cornstarch is one of the most important ingredients in pineapple brown sugar sauce for ham! Make sure that you whisk until the cornstarch has dissolved and the mixture is smooth. 

If you’d like an even thicker glaze, continue to add cornstarch (a little at a time) until you get the consistency you’re after.

What Should You Baste a Ham With?

If you’re looking for an easy way to ensure a delicious ham, make sure you baste it! Coat the meat before it goes in the oven, then baste throughout the baking process as well. 

Pair brown sugar and butter for traditional glazed ham. Simply mix melted butter, brown sugar, and a bit of apple or orange juice for a simple, delicious basting liquid. The fruit juice will bring out the full flavor of your ham!

pineapple sauce for ham in bowl with spoon

How to use Pineapple Sauce

Pineapple sauce works great on ham as a glaze or even topped with after it’s been sliced.

But this sauce isn’t just for ham. It gives that perfect touch of sweetness that can be used on both savory and sweet dishes.

That means pineapple sauce makes for a wonderful addition to ice cream, cheesecakepound cakechicken, angel food cake, and more!

How to Store this Sauce for Ham

To keep pineapple sauce as fresh as possible, store it in an airtight container in the fridge. It will stay fresh for up to a week.

If you make a big batch of this pineapple sauce recipe, you can also freeze it in a freezer-safe container! Just thaw it overnight in the fridge before using it again.

pineapple sauce for ham stored in jar

Ham Sauce FAQs

Does Pineapple Ruin Ham? 

You may have heard horror stories of people who ruined their ham recipes with pineapple. Fresh pineapple will make ham very mushy because it contains a powerful enzyme that will actually break down the meat. 
That’s why it’s so important to either: use canned pineapple if you want to baste your ham with fruit OR make a separate glaze to serve on the side. 
My crushed pineapple sauce for ham is the perfect solution if you’re worried about ruining your ham with fresh pineapple!

Why do you put pineapple on ham?

Pineapple sauce for ham is a classic for a reason! The natural sweetness and slight acidity of pineapple perfectly complements the salty, savory flavor of the ham.
I just love how the sauce balances out this dish. Plus, it adds a festive, tropical twist!

Other Recipes You’ll Love:

Pineapple sauce drizzled over glazed ham slices

Pineapple Ham Sauce Recipe

Samantha Erb
Brown sugar, pineapple, and vinegar unite to create this pineapple sauce for ham. It’s a sweet and tangy add-on for a classic glazed ham. 
4.51 from 99 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes
Course Sauces & Dips
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 92 kcal


  • 1 ½ cups crushed pineapple undrained
  • ¾ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar


  • In a colander set over a medium saucepan, drain the crushed pineapple. Set the pineapple aside.
  • Add the water to the pineapple juice, then whisk in the cornstarch until dissolved and smooth. 
  • Add the brown sugar and crushed pineapple, then set the saucepan over medium heat.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently, for 2-3 minutes, until thickened. 
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the butter and apple cider vinegar. Serve with ham.



Serving: 1gCalories: 92kcalCarbohydrates: 20gFat: 1gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 4mgSodium: 16mgSugar: 18g
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About Samantha

I’ve always had a love of cooking and creating new recipes, so it only made sense to create a food blog so I could share those recipes with you. This site is designed to provide easy and flavorful recipes with as little ingredients as possible. That means you still get great flavor combinations without all that extra time and effort. Read more...

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