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Herb-Stuffed Roasted Cornish Hens Recipe

Herb-Stuffed Roasted Cornish Hens Recipe

If you're looking to add a touch of elegance to your dinner table, we suggest this moist Cornish hen recipe. A blend of sage, lemon, onion and garlic give this entree outstanding flavor. —Taste of Home Cooking School
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 70 min. YIELD:2 servings


  • 2 Cornish game hens (20 to 24 ounces each)
  • 12 fresh sage leaves
  • 4 lemon wedges
  • 6 green onions, cut into 2-inch lengths, divided
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 6 small red potatoes, halved


  • 1. Preheat oven to 375°. Gently lift skin from hen breasts and place sage leaves under skin. Place lemon wedges and a third of the onions in the cavities. Tuck wings under hens; tie legs together. Place in a small greased roasting pan.
  • 2. Combine butter, oil, lemon juice and garlic; spoon half of mixture over hens. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  • 3. Bake 30 minutes. Add potatoes and remaining onions to pan. Brush hens with remaining butter mixture. Bake 40-45 minutes longer or until a thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh reads 170°-175° and potatoes are tender.
  • 4. Remove hens to a serving platter. Stir potatoes and onions to coat with pan drippings. Serve with hens. Yield: 2 servings.

Reviews for Herb-Stuffed Roasted Cornish Hens

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Reviewed May. 8, 2017

"A big hit for the Christmas dinner!! Everyone loved them!!"

Reviewed May. 27, 2015

"This is a terrific recipe! Instead of using the red potatoes, I made a batch of sage stuffing. I put it around the hens and baked them just like they said to bake the red potatoes. It was awesome!"

Reviewed Feb. 22, 2014


Reviewed Jan. 1, 2012

"I am not allowed stuffing or rice so this was an excellent alternative. I cooked it my Nuwave oven and it came out great."

Reviewed Dec. 13, 2011

"To all those "commonsense is required"!!! cooks out there, you "KNOW how much your family can or cannot eat at a meal. So fix as many birds your family needs. If you use "commonsense is required" and eat portions that are healthy for you eat and enjoy sensibly.This goes to "Maiden Fair" you just as well take all the meat off the bones and feed it to the dog and eat the bones if you are that concerned about how the bird is prepared. jensenal"

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"Hal47, You are right. Don't eat it. Get real, my family portion is Half a Cornish Hen ea. They put aside what they won't eat. They're sure to finish it off later. Heavens sakes it Christmas. You can heat up a lean Cuisine!!!!!!"

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"These were very good. To the previous poster who is alarmed at the calorie count...DON'T MAKE IT THEN! I have to watch my calorie intake so I just used olive oil on mine and removed the skin upon eating. Even without the skin, it was delicious (I never eat the skin on chicken either, just a personal preference). But my husband, son and daughters ate it as is and loved it. Making them again on Christmas Eve. Thank you for the recipe!"

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"Cornish game hens are excellent and there are so many ways to season them. They also make your dinner seem so very Special .... and it is. The Fresh Market has this Italian Seasoning that is so wonderful (and great on so many different things too ... pork, steaks, hamburgers). I also infuse my olive oil with different herbs and it makes a world of difference. Sweet Basil, garlic, rosemary. Bottles of infused olive oil makes a reall nice gift to those you know enjoy cooking and cooking well.

You can also infuse your butter with garlic by just flattening the garlic and micro on reduced heat until you hear the garlic popping. Once you try this you will use this often. (like in garlic mashed potatoes.)
Enjoy !!!"

Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"This recipe sounds so good! I may try it for Christ"

Maiden Faire
Reviewed Dec. 12, 2011

"I must agree with the previous users, commonsense is required. The recipe states that it yields 2-4 servings. Hello, that would mean a person would have either one or half of one of the hens. The nutritional amount listed would be for those individuals who would eat one entire hen. As for my family, we too feed four people with one hen. We love cornish game hens, and use lemon and sage in a large number of our recipes. We also only use real butter. We fully believe that natural products are better for us than man-made artificial ones. My college biology teacher warned us of the dangers of transfat in 1990. Just because an item says 0 transfat, you can't believe it. The FDA allows manufacturers to list 0 if a serving has .5 grams or less per serving. Read labels people.

If you are concerned about the calories, make adaptations. Use less butter, or if you are one of those individuals that believes in the merits of margarine, then use that. You can use no butter or margarine at all, and make a vinaigrette out of the lemon and herbs to baste the hens with. Use less salt. Sea salt has much more flavor than table salt, therefore you automatically need to use less. After cooked, remove the skin from the hens and discard it. I wouldn't due it prior to cooking because the bird would be to dry. Instead of potatoes which are a natural starchy food, roast vegetables such as asparagus or brussel sprouts; or add various squashes. Whatever suits your tastes. Remember, none of these recipes are carved in granite. Use them as a foundation and then adapt. Personally, we don't roast the hens. We cook them on the rotisserie and baste them. We also add a bit of rubbed sage into the butter mixture as well as the cavity of the bird. We love it. Trial and error is how all recipes were developed over time as we learned about new foods. There are still so many wonderful flavor combinations out there to discover. When you discover your signature dish, please share with us all. We all have that gift down inside of us.
Danny Kaye once said: If you're not cooking with joy, happiness and love, you're not cooking well.
May we all "cook well"."

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