For a quick recipe, prepare Grilled Spatchcock Cornish Hens. These are extremely easy to make and they lay flat above the coals for an extremely fast and even cook.
My local grocery store marks down meats that are nearing their Sell-By dates, and I was able to save 50% by picking these up and grilling them on the same day! You gotta love that! We grilled up these gorgeous birds for a casual Saturday afternoon lunch and felt very spoiled!
🍽️ Why This Works
- It only takes five minutes to prep!
- Only two ingredients.
- The meat is juicy and delicious.
- Each hen serves two and you can make extra for feeding a crowd.
- It’s a popular recipe that everyone will love.
As I mentioned, you only need two ingredients and a little bit of time! Seriously…this is about to become your new favorite recipe, so you’ll want to print it to make time and time again.
Cornish Hen | This recipe is easy to multiply, but on average a Cornish hen will feed around two people.
BBQ Rub | Use any of your favorite BBQ rubs. We prefer to use DizzyDust because it tastes amazing.
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Spatchcock the Hen
Spatchcock, also known as Butterflying, is a simple way to flatten the bird for a quicker grilling. You can use the same technique when smoking a hen as well.
Step One: Set the bird breast-side down on the counter and cut along one side of the spine with kitchen shears. The bones cut pretty easily. When you have cut from one end to the other, cut along the other side of the spine.
Step Two: Turn the bird over and flatten it with your hands. You might hear the breastbone crack, but that is completely normal.
And that’s it! You have just spatchcocked a Cornish hen.
Season and Grill
Step One: Set up the grill for direct heat. I used my Big Green Egg and let it heat up to 350 degrees. A gas grill will work just as well, but I am addicted to my BGE!
One of my favorite all-purpose seasonings is DizzyDust from Dizzy Pig in Manassas, VA. It is fairly close to my house, and I love taking trips over to see their new grilling accessories. One of these days, I will take a class there too.
Step Two: Grab the coarse ground DizzyDust and liberally coat both sides of the hen. Don’t worry about brushing olive oil on first as the seasoning will adhere to the skin just fine, and the skin side is up at the beginning of the grill which will help keep the seasoning from falling off.
The Cornish hen did not stick to the grill at all. If you fear it will, you can brush olive oil on the grill grates for safe measure.
Step Three: Place the hen with the skin side up straight on the grate and grill for 15 minutes.
Step Four: Turn the bird over (so the skin side is down) and grill for another 15 minutes or until the temperature of the thickest point is 165 degrees.
Step Five: Remove it from the grill and let it rest for ten minutes before serving. You are allowing it to rest so the juices stay in the bird and not run onto the plate.
I was shocked at how juicy this was coming off the grill, and the flavor of the DizzyDust was just perfect for the hen!
⏲️ Grilling Time
The nice thing with spatchcocked birds is that they take less time to cook. My hens took 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Always check the internal temperature, though. 165 degrees is the magic number.
Note: We love Spatchcock Chicken/Butterflied Chicken so much that we knew this one would be a hit too. These turn out so tender and juicy.
After the Cornish hen is cooled down, place it in an airtight container. It will last 3-4 days in the fridge.
The easiest way is to place the meat on a microwave safe plate and cover it with a damp paper towel. Heat in the microwave for 1-2 minutes or until it reaches the desired temperature.
You can also warm it in the oven at 350 degrees for 10 – 15 minutes.
You should cook the Cornish hen until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. Don’t forget to let it rest for 10 minutes before eating.
Tried this recipe? Please leave a star ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating in the recipe card below and/or a review in the comments section further down the page. You can also stay in touch with me through social media by following me on Instagram, Pinterest, and Facebook!
Grilled Spatchcock Cornish Hens with DizzyDust Seasoning
- 1 Cornish Hen
- ¼ cup BBQ Rub I used DizzyDust
Prepare the Cornish Hen
- Use kitchen shears to cut along both sides of the spine and press the hen flat
- Use Dizzy Pig's Dizzy Dust seasoning to liberally coat both sides of the hen. If you don't have this seasoning, use your favorite chicken seasoning
Grill the Cornish Hen
- Preheat the grill to 350 degrees on direct heat
- Place the hen over direct heat with the skin side up for 15 minutes
- Turn the hen over and grill skin side down for 15 more minutes
- The hen is fully cooked when the temperature of the thickest part reaches 165 degrees
- Remove from the grill and let rest for 10 minutes before serving