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How to Spatchcock Cornish Hens


Sounds a bit gross but by removing the backbone you actually decrease the cooking time, the bird cooks evenly, and the skin is crispy all over – nothing I detest more than soggy chicken skin. Spatchcock a cornish hen, chicken or turkey.

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  • 2 cornish hens
  • Salt, pepper and other seasonings to taste


Servings 2
Preparation time 5mins
Cooking time 30mins


Step 1

To start, grab kitchen shears or a sharp knife. I used all-purpose kitchen scissors.

Place hen or chicken breast-side down and cut along one side of the backbone. Repeat with the other side. Don’t discard the backbone as you can use it later for stock.

Flip the bird over and using the palm of your hand, press down on the breastbone. Use your muscles for this and you’ll hear a snap. Presto, you have now spatchcocked! To barbecue the cornish hen, season to your preference and cook over a medium heat 20 to 25 minutes (turning halfway).

Note: Remove wing tips if barbecuing as they tend to burn easily. If using an oven, preheat to 425 degrees and roast cornish hens 40 to 50 minutes or until thickest part of breast reaches 165 degrees, allow to rest 5 to 10 minutes. Enjoy!

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