To split hens, use a sharp knife to cut along both sides of the breastplate, through the breastbone and along both sides of the backbone.


Credit: Chelsea Zimmer; Prop Styling: Mindi Shapiro

Recipe Summary test

40 mins
1 hr 40 mins
8 servings


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion and celery; cook, stirring often, until onion is tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Stir in rice; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Stir in chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed, about 1 hour and 5 minutes. Stir in grapes, chopped thyme, ½ teaspoon of the salt and ¼ teaspoon of the pepper. Transfer to a bowl; let cool for 15 minutes.

  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Place a wire rack in a foil-lined large rimmed baking sheet; coat rack with cooking spray. Stuff warm rice mixture into cavities of hens; tie ends of legs together with kitchen twine and tuck wing tips under. Place hens breast-side up on rack. Rub with remaining 2 tablespoons butter and sprinkle with remaining 1½ teaspoons salt and ¾ teaspoon pepper. Bake until golden brown and a thermometer inserted into thigh registers 160°F, about 35 minutes.

  • Meanwhile, combine vinegar, honey and thyme sprig in a small saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil, stirring occasionally, until mixture is syrupy and reduced to about ¼ cup, 7 to 8 minutes. Discard thyme sprig.

  • After hens have baked for 35 minutes, brush with vinegar mixture. Continue baking until hens are deeply browned and a thermometer inserted into thigh registers 165°F, about 10 minutes. (Shield hens with foil if needed to prevent excessive browning.) Remove from oven and let stand for 10 minutes. Split hens in half length

Nutrition Facts

481 calories; fat 29g; saturated fat 10g; cholesterol 186mg; fiber 1g; protein 34g; carbohydrates 21g; sodium 681mg; iron 2mg; calcium 31mg.