Cancer Institute A national cancer institute
designated cancer center

Stuffed Cornish Hens

Serves:  6
Serving Size:  1/2 a hen + cup rice mixture is 347 calories, 35g carbs, 32g protein, 9g fat (2g saturated), 3g fiber, 344mg sodium


3 cups fat-free, reduced-sodium chicken broth, divided  3 cornish hens, rinsed and trimmed or excess fat
1 cup water  4 oz mushrooms, sliced thin
cup wild rice, rinsed well cups slivered blanched almonds
brown rice ½ medium onion, finely chopped  
2 tsp fresh or tsp dried tarragon tsp fines herbes* 
4 Tbsp orange marmalade Salt & pepper 
Tbsp fresh lime juice 2 tsp canola oil

*fines herbes is a commercially prepared mixture of dried herbs that typically includes parsley, chervil, tarragon and chives.


1. In a large pot, bring 2 cups of broth and 1 cup of water to a boil.  Add the rice, tarragon and fines herbes.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 45 minutes or until the rice is almost tender.  Transfer the cooked rice to a bowl, draining any excess liquid.

2. While the rice cooks, heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium heat.  Add the onions and saute until they are soft and translucent.  Raise the heat to high.  Add the mushrooms and almonds, stirring constantly to prevent burning.  Saute about 3 minutes or until the nuts are golden.  Combine the mixture with the cooled rice.  Season, to taste, with salt and pepper.

3. Preheat the oven to 375?.  Season the cavities of the hens with salt and pepper.  Stuff the hens with the rice mixture.  Season the skin with salt and pepper.  Place the hens on a rack in a shallow roasting pan, breast side up.  Pour one cup of chicken broth in the bottom of the pan.  Hens should roast for about 75 minutes total.  Baste with the broth every 15 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, gently heat the marmalade on the stovetop or in a microwave oven at low power until melted.  Stir in the lime juice.  During the last 30 minutes of roasting, baste the hens with the mixture to glaze them.  If the top of the hen becomes brown before cooking is completed, cover it lightly with foil.  Hens are done with the juices run clear after pricking a thigh with a fork.  Once the hens are done, remove them from the oven and let them rest for 15 minutes.

5. Cut the hens in half, lengthwise.  Transfer any pan juices to a small cup and skim off the fat.  Divide the rest of the stuffing among 4 plates and place a hen on top of it.  Gently heat the pan juices in a microwave oven.  Pour it over the hens.  Serve with cooked vegetables.

Recipe from:

Stanford Medicine Resources:

Footer Links: