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How Long to Cook Cornish Hens

We will share how long to cook Cornish hens in oven, a pressure cooker, Ninja Foodi Cornish hens or smoked here. Little chickens are elegant and fun to eat.

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens

Cooking cornish game hens are a simple elegant alternative to how long to cook a whole chicken. Perfect for special occasions or intimate gatherings. Roasting these small game birds is a culinary art that requires the right cooking time and seasoning to achieve tender and succulent results. (post may contain affiliate links)

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens at 350

With the perfect blend of salt and pepper, fresh rosemary, and a drizzle of olive oil, these Cornish hens will be little roasted chickens to golden brown perfection. AND will leave you and your guests craving more. Let’s uncover the secrets to cooking Cornish hens to perfection and creating a memorable dining experience.

Before diving into the cooking process of any kind, ensure the little hens are thoroughly cleaned and patted dry with a paper towel. This step removes any excess moisture, ensuring a crisp and evenly browned skin during roasting or making Slow Cooker Cornish Hens.

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens at 350

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens in Oven

To enhance the flavor, season them with a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper. These simple yet powerful seasonings will bring out the natural taste of the hens, creating a savory and delightful experience for your taste buds.

Elevate the flavor profile further like our stuffed whole chicken. You can add all sorts of things into the cavity like chopped vegetables and/or fresh rosemary sprigs. The aromatic herb infuses the hens with a delightful herbal essence as they roast, adding a touch of sophistication to the dish.

To ensure that the Cornish hens in air fryer or oven stays moist and succulent, drizzle a small amount of olive oil over each bird. This step helps retain their juiciness and adds a subtle richness to the overall flavor. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (175 degrees Celsius) to create the perfect roasted birds.

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens in Oven

How Long to Cook 2 Cornish Hens

Place the seasoned and prepared Cornish hens in a roasting pan, breast-side up. Roast in the preheated oven for approximately 25 – 30 minutes per pound. To ensure that they are fully cooked and safe to eat, use an instant-read meat thermometer to check the internal temperature.

The hens are done when the internal temperature at the thickest part of the breast and thigh reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit and juices run clear.

This is the minimum safe temperature recommended by the USDA to ensure that poultry is fully cooked and free from harmful bacteria. Once you remove the hens they should also rest for 10 minutes to stay juicy.

Once the Cornish hens reach the desired internal temperature, remove them from the oven and let them rest for a few minutes before serving. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute within the hens, resulting in a more tender and juicy meat.

How Long to Cook 2 Cornish Hens

How Long to Cook Cornish Game Hens

For added flavor and moisture, consider deglazing the roasting pan with chicken broth or wine and using the pan drippings to create a delicious sauce to accompany the Cornish hens.

This a delicious meal that always delights kids and adult guests. With the right combination of seasonings, including salt and pepper, fresh rosemary, and a drizzle of olive oil, you can roast these small game birds to golden brown perfection.

How Long to Smoke Cornish Hens

Smoking Cornish hens is a fantastic way to infuse them with a rich, smoky flavor and achieve tender, juicy results. The process of smoking requires a smoker, which is a specialized cooking apparatus designed to cook food with low, indirect heat while infusing it with smoky flavors.

To add extra flavor and moisture, you can use our whole chicken brine. Even though these are smaller than a whole bird it works well. You just dissolve salt, sugar, and any desired herbs or spices in water. Submerge the hens in the brine and refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours (or overnight for best results). Rinse the hens thoroughly after brining and pat them dry with paper towels.

How Long to Cook a Cornish Hen

How to Cut a Cornish Hen

You can quarter the small hen by cutting it into four pieces. Quartering the Cornish Hen – After separating the legs and wings and removing the breasts, use your knife to cut the hen in half vertically along the backbone.

You will now have two halves. Then, cut each half in half horizontally through the breast and back to create four quarters.

  1. Place the whole hen on a clean cutting board.
  2. Start by cutting off the legs and wings. Locate the joint where the leg connects to the body and use your knife to cut through the joint to separate the leg. Repeat the process on the other side. Next, remove the wings in the same way.
  3. To cut the breast, run your knife along the breastbone (the center bone that separates the two breasts) to separate the breasts from the carcass. Use gentle slicing motions to cut through the meat. If needed, you can cut through the cartilage at the bottom of the breastbone to fully separate the two breasts.
  4. Once you have separated the two breasts, you can slice them into smaller, more manageable pieces. Angle your knife and make thin slices across the grain of the meat for a more tender and appealing presentation.
  5. Arrange the pieces on a serving platter, and your Cornish hen is ready to be served and enjoyed.

How to Serve Cornish Game Hens

Now that you’ve cut the whole thing into smaller pieces, it’s ready to be served and enjoyed. The meat will be tender and flavorful, making it a delightful and elegant meal for any occasion. Whether you’re serving a quarter, a half, or individual pieces, cutting it into pieces allows for easy and convenient serving to your guests or family, especially with kids.

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How Long to Cook Cornish Hens
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5 from 1 vote

How Long to Cook Cornish Hens

Course Entree
Cuisine American
Keyword cornish hen
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 1029kcal
Author The Typical Mom




  • How to Cook Cornish hens in Air Fryer – Rinse and pat dry with paper towels. Brush oil on underside and top of hens, and inside of basket too. In a bowl mix seasonings together. Rub seasoning on all sides of both of them until gone. Place them in the basket with breast side facing down. Cook at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes total. Flip them over to make breast side facing up after 25 minutes of cook time or until they reach 165 degrees F inside.
  • How to Cook Cornish Hens in Oven – Preheat oven to 400 F. Dry skin with paper towels. Brush on olive oil and sprinkle with seasonings. Set on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, breast side up. Bake until they become golden and cooked through in about 45 to 60 minutes.
  • How to Cook Cornish Hens in Instant Pot – Set to saute and add 1 tbsp olive oil. Rub outside skin with olive oil and season as you like. Add 1 at a time and brown the outsides all the way around. Turn pot off. Set 1-2 birds inside + 1/2 cup chicken broth and seal lid and steam valve closed. Set to high pressure for 20 minutes with a 5 minute natural release. Let out rest of steam, set on cutting board and cut into pieces or remove meat and shred.
  • How to Cook Cornish Hens in Slow Cooker – Pat dry, brush on olive oil and season all the way around. Cut potatoes into large bite size pieces, cover the bottom of the pot + 3/4 cup broth. Put hens on top of potatoes to keep off bottom. Slow cook on low for 4.5-5 hours or until 165 F in thickest part.


Nutrition Facts
How Long to Cook Cornish Hens
Amount Per Serving (2 oz)
Calories 1029 Calories from Fat 693
% Daily Value*
Fat 77g118%
Saturated Fat 19g119%
Polyunsaturated Fat 14g
Monounsaturated Fat 38g
Cholesterol 455mg152%
Sodium 857mg37%
Potassium 1083mg31%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Fiber 0.3g1%
Sugar 0.1g0%
Protein 77g154%
Vitamin A 514IU10%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 56mg6%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)
Recipe Rating

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