Cornish hens are a small, delicious alternative to the traditional chicken dinner. In this article, I’ll guide you step-by-step how to cook cornish hens properly, so you can enjoy this tasty dish in the comfort of your own home.

1. How To Cook Cornish Hens


  • 2 Cornish hens, about 1 1/2 to 2 pounds each
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lemon, sliced


Preheat your oven to 375°F.

Remove the Cornish hens from their packaging and pat them dry with paper towels.

In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, Italian seasoning, smoked paprika, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Then rub the spice mixture all over the Cornish hens, making sure to coat them evenly.

Stuff the cavity of each Cornish hen with one sprig of rosemary, one sprig of thyme, half of the chopped onion, half of the minced garlic, and a few slices of lemon.

Tie the legs of the Cornish hens together with kitchen twine. Then place the Cornish hens on a baking sheet or in a roasting pan.

Roast the Cornish hens in the preheated oven for about 45-60 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the thickest part of the hen reads 165°F on a meat thermometer.

Remove the Cornish hens from the oven and let them rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. Serve the Cornish hens with the roasted onions and garlic, and garnish with lemon wedges and fresh herbs.

Cornish hens are a flavorful and impressive dish that can elevate any meal. So next time you’re looking for a special meal to impress your guests or treat yourself, give Cornish hens a try and follow our simple guide for a perfect result every time.

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julia jane

Julia Jane is a home cook inspired by her mother's cooking. With the desire to share my cooking experiences with everyone, she created this website

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