Learn how to cook cornish hen in air fryer with crispy skin and juicy meat following simple steps and use ingredients you already have in your kitchen.
This air fryer cornish game hen recipe is super easy to make with so much flavor, and its inside is juicy, making it the perfect main dish for a special occasion or weeknight dinner.
Reading: how to air fry cornish hen
Even though cornish hens taste like chicken, they are ideal for serving in family gatherings. Simple make one for each person or split it in half for those that aren’t huge meat eaters, which makes it much easier to plan your gathering meal.
You can scroll to get to the recipe card for rock cornish hens in air fryer. You find some other helpful tips and common questions that are answered in this blog post like:
How to thaw cornish hens? what to serve with it, how to store leftover, and how to reheat it in the air fryer or oven.
How to thaw cornish hens
Rock cornish game hens thaw much more quickly than a regular chicken because of the size.
Thaw in the refrigerator
In the fridge is one of the safest methods to thaw any kind of meat because it helps to hold a safe temperature while the meat is thawing to avoid the growth of bacteria.
Once you remove the cornish hens from the freezer, place them in the fridge for 24 to 36 hours to allow the cornish hens to thaw.
Thaw with water
Fill a large bowl with cold water and place the packaged cornish hen in the bowl and change the water every 30 minutes until the hen is thawed.
Read more: how to bread and fry okra | Family Cuisine
It is not safe to thaw cornish hens or any poultry at room temperature because it increases the risk of foodborne illness.
Wash your hands and sanitize any surfaces or utensils that you use to prepare uncooked poultry.
Now let jump on this rock cornish hen recipe, or cornish rock chicken recipe.
How to make Cornish game hen in the air fryer
It is pretty easy to make Cornish hen using the air fryer. Just season the hen with the spices blend, place the bird in the air fryer, set time and temperature, and let the air fryer do its magic.
First: Preheat the air fryer to 380º F for 5 minutes.
Combine the ingredients for the spice blend:
- In a small bowl, combine the onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, rosemary, and thyme; set aside.
Season the bird:
- Rub olive oil all over the Cornish hen, season with salt to taste, including the cavity, then rub the spices blend all over the bird, including the cavity and underneath the skin.
- Use a spoon to help you open the space underneath the skin; that way is easier to season the Cornish with the spice blend and add more flavor.
How long to cook cornish hen in air fryer
Cooking the hen:
- Place the game hen in the air fryer basket and cook to 380ºF for 20 minutes breast side down and 10 minutes breast side up. Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer; the cornish hen should reach 165º F.
- Let the cooked Cornish hen rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Enjoy!
- The air fryer cornish hen cook time can vary depending on the size of the bird.
- Use an instant meat thermometer
- While it is resting, the meat will keep it moist and result in juicier meat.
- You can season the cornish hen in advance and keep it in the fridge until ready to cook.
- The seasoning can be doubled to make 2 game hens instead of one and keep the temperature and cooking time the same if the birds are around 2lbs each.
- With birds smaller than 2lbs, the cooking time will be less, check the internal temperature with an instant meat thermometer.
What to serve with cornish hens
You can serve air-fried cornish game hens with;
Salad, roasted veggies like these air fryer broccolis, or these air fryer bacon-wrapped asparagus. If you like roasted cauliflower, these air fryer cauliflower steaks are perfect for serving with cornish hens as well air fryer spaghetti squash
If you follow a low-carb diet or keto diet, this loaded mashed cauliflower is delicious and can impress your keto dieter friends or family members.
You still need more side dishes recipes; check the side dishes category page. I’m sure you’ll find something you’ll love.
Maybe you are wondering how many cornish game hens per person should you serve? As I mentioned earlier, you can serve one rotisserie cornish hen per person depending on the size, or you can split them in half for those that don’t eat a lot of meat.
Keep in mind that cornish game hens are small, and the largest they can be is 2 pounds, and those are perfect for splitting in half, but they usually are 1- 1 1/2 pounds.
How to store leftover
Store leftover air-fried cornish hens in an airtight container in your fridge for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
How to reheat cornish hen
The air fryer or the oven is the best option when it comes to warming up roasted or air fried bird that’s still on the bone.
How to reheat hens in the air fryer
Reheating chicken in the air fryer is as easy as to cook them in the air fryer. Place the leftover in the air fryer basket and simply reheat it in the air fryer at 400 degrees for 3-5 minutes without preheating or 1-2 minutes with a preheated air fryer.
Reheating roasted chicken in the oven
Preheat the oven to 350ºF and place the roasted Cornish hen in a baking dish; add a few tablespoons of water covered with foil. Transfer the cooked cornish game hen to the oven and bake until it reaches an internal temperature of 165ºF (cooking time will vary depending on how much leftover you’re reheating).
More poultry air fryer recipes you’ll love
- Air Fryer Teriyaki Chicken Thighs
- Air Fryer Chicken Tenders no breading
- Turkey tenderloin skewers
- Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast
- Air Fryer Chicken Wings
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