The Best Tips And Recipes For Cooking The Perfect Deep Fried Cornish Hen

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Nothing quite compares to the succulent and juicy taste of a deep-fried cornish hen. This classic dish is sure to delight any dinner gathering or special occasion with its tender, golden skin, and crisp texture.

With the right instructions, you can easily recreate this delicious treat in your own kitchen! In this article, we’ll provide step-by-step instructions as well as helpful tips on how to make the perfect deep fried cornish hen. Get ready for a taste explosion that will have your mouth watering!

Can you deep fry cornish hens?

Yes, you can indeed deep fry a cornish hen! This process is often completed in an oil-filled pot, sometimes using pre-made packets of breading. If you’d like to make the coating yourself, consider mixing together some all-purpose flour, salt and pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder.

The hens should be dried off with a paper towel before being submerged in the hot oil. Cornish hens usually take about 8 minutes to cook in a deep fryer set to 350 degrees Fahrenheit or 18 minutes when shallow frying.

If your oil starts smoking or bubbling up too much during cooking, lower the temperature slightly and add more oil as needed to keep your hens from burning.

To ensure the hens are cooked thoroughly before consuming, use an instant-read meat thermometer and make sure that both sides reach an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees F.

How long to deep fry cornish hens?

Deep frying a Cornish hen generally takes between 10 to 15 minutes. It is important to ensure that the temperature of the oil reaches 375°F before beginning, as this will guarantee crispy and golden skin on the hens.

How to deep fry cornish hens?

1. Get everything you need to get started: cornish hens, a large pot or deep-fryer, oil for frying (vegetable oil works best), and a slotted spoon. 

2. Rinse the cornish hens under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels. This helps the hens crisp up better when frying.

3. Fill the pot or fryer with oil until it’s two inches deep and turn the heat to 375°F. 

4. Begin heating the oil while prepping the hens; season them liberally with your favorite spices and herbs or simply salt and pepper. If desired, coat the cornish hens in a light dusting of flour before placing into hot oil to help seal in moisture and crispiness during frying. 

5. Carefully place each hen into the hot oil using tongs, being sure not to overcrowd them in order to allow for even cooking on all sides (about 3 minutes per side). It’s best to fry no more than two at a time unless you have a larger-sized pot or fryer that can accommodate more birds without lowering the temperature of the oil too much. 

6. Use a thermometer to keep an eye on your oil’s temperature as you fry, adjusting it as necessary to stay around 375°F; if it gets too hot, reduce heat slightly but not too much as this will affect your crispy coating! 

7. Once they are done frying (around 12 minutes total) carefully remove them from the hot oil using tongs or a slotted spoon and place on cooling racks over paper towels or newspaper so that any excess fat can drip off. 

8. Let cool for about 5 minutes before serving so that they don’t burn anyone’s mouth! Enjoy your deep-fried cornish hens!

How to cook southern deep fried cornish hens?

1. Gather all the items you need for the recipe, including a few Cornish hens, garlic powder, salt, freshly ground black pepper, paprika, and vegetable oil for frying. 

2. Preheat your deep-fryer to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

3. In a small bowl, mix together garlic powder, salt, pepper and paprika. Set aside this seasoning mixture. 

4. Wash the Cornish hens thoroughly with cold water and pat them dry with paper towels. 

5. Rub each hen evenly with the seasoning mixture on both sides – making sure to get inside the cavity as well – then set aside until ready to cook. 

6. Heat a few inches of oil in your deep fryer or a heavy pot over medium heat until it reaches 375 degrees Fahrenheit – using a thermometer is recommended to ensure accurate temperature control during cooking time. 

7. Carefully lower each hen into the hot oil one at a time and let them cook for about 20 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through – turning them occasionally so that each side cooks evenly

To test if they are done insert an instant-read thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh – if it reads 165 degrees Fahrenheit then they are fully cooked through and can be removed from the hot oil. 

8 Once cooked through gently remove each hen from the hot oil and let them rest on paper towels for 2-3 minutes before serving – This will allow any excess oil to drain off helping to prevent a greasy texture when eating. 

9. Serve up these southern fried treats with your choice of sides such as mashed potatoes, macaroni & cheese, green beans, or coleslaw – Enjoy!

What temperature should you deep fry cornish hens?

When deep frying Cornish hens, the temperature of the oil should be between 350 and 375 degrees Fahrenheit. The most ideal temperature for deep-frying Cornish hens is 365 degrees Fahrenheit.

Cooking at this temperature ensures that the skin is a nice golden brown color and crispy, but not burnt. In order to achieve a crispier texture, some chefs like to fry the hens at temperatures up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

It’s important to regulate heat closely by using a cooking thermometer, as temperatures above 375 degrees can cause the hen to become too dry on the inside and can also be a fire hazard.

Different recipes call for different cooking times, so it’s important to watch closely and adjust heat accordingly if necessary to ensure even cooking and avoid burning.

Recommend deep fried cornish hen recipe

Crispy Deep Fried Cornish Hen

Marinate a Cornish hen in olive oil, garlic, thyme, oregano, and rosemary for at least four hours or overnight. Heat oil in a deep fryer to 375*F. Rinse the marinade from the hen and pat dry with paper towels.

Carefully lower the hen into the hot oil and fry for about 8 minutes until the outside is golden brown and crispy. Drain on paper towels to remove any excess oil before serving.

Fried Cornish Hen with Cajun Seasoning

Start by marinating a whole Cornish hen with olive oil, garlic, paprika, oregano, onion powder, cumin, cayenne pepper, sea salt, and black pepper for at least two hours or overnight.

Then heat a gallon of vegetable or canola oil in a large stockpot over medium-high heat until it reaches 350*F degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Gently lower the chicken into the hot oil and cook for 8-10 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.

Remove from pot with tongs and drain on paper towels before serving.

Barbecue Fried Cornish Hen

Begin by marinating a whole Cornish hen in your favorite BBQ sauce overnight or for at least four hours in the fridge. Heat two cups of vegetable oil to 375*F in a deep fryer or large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat.

Once the oil is hot enough, carefully lower the chicken pieces into the hot oil using tongs and fry for 8-10 minutes until golden brown and cooked through all pieces reach an internal temperature of 165*F. Serve warm with extra BBQ sauce on the side if desired! 

Asian Fried Cornish Hen

Start by marinating a whole cornish hen with soy sauce, garlic chili sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, honey, and green onions for at least two hours or overnight in your refrigerator covered with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.

Heat two cups of vegetable or canola oil in a large pot over medium-high heat until it reaches 375*F degrees on an instant-read thermometer then carefully lower each chicken piece into the hot oil using long-handled tongs or chopsticks and cook for 8-10 minutes until golden brown all around and cooked through (internal temperature should be 165*F).

Drain on paper towels before serving either as is or served over steamed rice with extra hoisin sauce on top if desired!

How taste of deep fry cornish hen in turkey fryer?

Tasting a deep-fried Cornish hen cooked in a turkey fryer is an unforgettable experience. Not only does it taste scrumptious, but it also has a unique flavor from being cooked in the fryer.

The outside is perfectly crispy and crunchy and the inside is incredibly juicy and tender. Furthermore, the herbs and spices added to the coating of the batter give it a distinctive flavor that goes perfectly with the moist texture of the hen.

The combination of oil, heat, and seasonings makes for an exceptional dish that highlights all the flavors and textures one could ever want from this poultry classic.

Plus, cooking it in a turkey fryer ensures even cooking throughout resulting in evenly fried goodness that’s sure to be enjoyed by your guests!

Is deep fried cornish hen healthy?

Deep-fried Cornish hen is not the healthiest meal option, but it can be an occasional indulgence if consumed in moderation.

  • It is high in fat and calories, offering around 8 grams of fat and 81-135 calories depending on the size of the hen. Moreover, deep frying adds an additional layer of unhealthy fats to these numbers due to the oil used for frying.
  • Additionally, marinades and sauces may add carbohydrates and sugar to the meal. Although there are some benefits to consuming deep-fried Cornish hen such as protein and certain vitamins and minerals, it should not be a part of a regular diet.
  • The occasional indulgence can be enjoyed with healthier side dishes like salads or steamed vegetables for a more balanced meal.


What herbs and spices go best with a deep fried cornish hen?

A deep-fried Cornish hen is a classic treat that pairs beautifully with herbs and spices.

  • For a traditional taste, opt for oregano, thyme, garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper. These ingredients will bring out the succulent texture of the bird while providing subtle notes of earthy flavor.
  • Alternatively, you can go for a more exotic combination such as cumin, curry powder, turmeric, and coriander. This blend will add delightful floral undertones and a hint of heat to the dish without overpowering it.
  • For those looking to make their meal even more flavorful, adding some grated ginger or minced onion can provide yet another layer of complexity to your deep-fried Cornish hen.

How can I make my deep fried cornish hen extra crispy?

To make deep-fried cornish hen extra crispy, start by making sure the oil is at a high temperature before you begin frying. This will help ensure that the coating is quickly sealed and that the inside of the hen remains moist.

Additionally, it’s helpful to soak the hen in a buttermilk or egg wash beforehand, which will help create a crispier exterior when it’s fried. For an even crispier result, you can double-dip the hen in your coating of choice.

When it comes to coatings, try to find one with a combination of flour and spices for maximum flavor and crunch. Finally, when frying your cornish hens, be sure to keep them moving constantly so they don’t stick to one spot in the pan and become soggy.

Following these tips carefully should provide you with a delicious and crispy deep-fried cornish hen.

Does size of the cornish hen matter when deep frying it?

When deep-frying a Cornish hen, the size of the bird does matter. A larger hen will take longer to cook, requiring more oil and heat to cook it through thoroughly.

The amount of time necessary to properly fry a Cornish hen depends largely on its size; smaller birds can be cooked in as little as 10 minutes while larger hens may require up to 25 minutes or more. Additionally, when frying multiple hens together, size consistency is important for achieving evenly cooked birds.

Furthermore, a too-large bird may not fit comfortably into the fryer basket and can lead to overcrowding which causes prolonged cooking times and inconsistent exterior browning. For best results, try to keep the Cornish hens similar in size for proper frying.

Can you put raw chicken in a deep fryer?

Yes, you can put raw chicken in a deep fryer. This is an ideal way to prepare chicken if you are looking for a juicy, succulent meal that is lightly battered and incredibly flavorful.

Should you deep fry chicken with a covered or uncovered one?

When it comes to deep frying chicken, there are two different approaches that can be taken: either with a covered or uncovered pot.

When using a covered pot, the chicken will be cooked faster due to the sealed environment, as the steam created in the pan helps cook it more quickly. The downside to this method is that some of the crispy texture from deep frying will be lost, as some of the oil vapors and moisture produced by cooking are sealed inside.

On the other hand, when you deep fry in an uncovered pot, more of the crispiness is preserved while still getting tenderness inside. Despite taking longer to cook, this method also means that excess fat and oil can drip off as well as steam released which helps keep your kitchen clean.

Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference – if you’re looking for faster cooking time then use a covered pot; however if you want to preserve crispiness then go with an uncovered pot.

How do you keep chicken moist when deep frying?

One of the best ways to keep chicken moist when deep frying is to ensure the oil temperature is at the correct level. The ideal temperature range for deep frying chicken should be between 350-375 degrees Fahrenheit, as this will help create a crispy outer layer while maintaining moisture on the inside.

What should you not do when deep frying a cornish hen?

When deep frying a Cornish hen, there are a few key things to remember in order to avoid an unsafe or unappetizing experience.

  • Firstly, you should ensure that the oil temperature never exceeds 350 degrees Fahrenheit; overheating can cause the bird to burn on the outside while still being raw on the inside.
  • Secondly, it is important to never add water when deep-frying a Cornish hen; adding water can cause dangerous splattering, and it will also affect the taste of your food.
  • Thirdly, never leave a deep-frying Cornish hen unattended; not only could this be hazardous for obvious reasons, but it will also likely lead to overcooking and dryness in the finished dish.
  • Finally, remember not to overcrowd your fryer when cooking your Cornish hens; this can lower oil temperature, preventing even cooking of all pieces.

Following these simple guidelines will help you achieve a safe and delicious meal every time!

Do you flip chicken when deep frying?

When deep frying chicken, it is important to flip the chicken in order to ensure that it cooks evenly on both sides. This helps to ensure that the chicken cooks through completely and remains juicy and tender.

Additionally, flipping the chicken while cooking helps to prevent burning or overcooking as one side of the chicken will not be exposed to direct heat for an extended period of time.

Why is my deep fried chicken not crispy?

The most common cause is that I haven’t used enough oil in the pan, or didn’t heat it up enough before adding the chicken. If I don’t use enough oil, the chicken won’t be able to fry properly, leaving it soggy and not crispy

Why do you dip chicken in egg before frying?

When preparing fried chicken, dipping the chicken in egg beforehand is important because it helps seal in the moisture and adds flavor while also helping to create a crispy coating.


There you have it – a delicious, perfect deep fried cornish hen that is sure to be a crowd favorite. We hope you enjoyed this recipe and we look forward to hearing your feedback. As always, thanks for reading, and happy cooking!