Baked Grouse with Brown Rice, Cranberries and Walnuts

It’s been a good hunting season for ruffed grouse, or partridge as most folks here call them. Do you know the difference between grouse and partridge? The locals say grouse is what you hunt with a guide and bird dog while partridge is what you hunt on your own, the difference being the amount of money spent on the excursion. 🙂 We’re going with grouse today. Baked grouse, brown rice, cranberries and walnuts – could we get any more autumn with this recipe!

baked grouse

Steve went up north to bird hunt with some of his friends. They usually got their daily bag limit of four, ate those birds for supper, and got more the next days. He came home with seven of the eight total possession limit. With 16 birds in the freezer we’ll be eating the rest of what we take fresh.

I love a good one-pot meal. Use a 10″ Dutch oven or skillet, both at least 3″ deep and with covers.

Preheat the oven to 350°. Total baking time is 50 minutes. First time is 30 minutes, you’ll fluff the rice and add the grouse, and then bake another 20 minutes.

There should be plenty of moisture for the rice to cook. The dried cranberries will absorb a small amount of water but that should be replaced by the moisture in the mushrooms. If you don’t think there’s going to be enough when you add the grouse and walnuts at the 30 minute point, add 1/4 cup hot stock or water to the pan.

I like to serve this with roasted carrots and a white wine.

Baked grouse is a great dish to serve family style. Use a pot holder or trivet to protect the table from the hot pan. Add a large spoon for serving and you’re good to go.

Baked Grouse with Brown Rice, Cranberries and Walnuts

Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Author Robin Follette


  • 4 grouse breasts unsplit
  • 1 cup brown rice
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups fresh mushrooms sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup walnuts chopped
  • 1/2 cup cranberries dried
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tablespoons butter
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste


  • Preheat the oven to 350°.
  • In a medium hot skillet or Dutch oven, toast the uncooked rice in 1 tsp olive oil for two minutes.
  • Add 2 tablespoons of butter and then the mushrooms. Cook three to four minutes, stirring two or three times.
  • Add 2 cups of hot chicken stock and the cranberries. It's especially important that the stock be hot if you're using cast iron. Cast iron can crack the same way glass does when you add hot to cold or cold to hot.
  • Bake at 350° for 30 minutes.
  • Fluff the rice. Nestle the grouse into the rice, add the walnuts, and return the cover. Continue to bake for an additional 20 minutes.