This beer battered fish and chips recipe is so crispy and delicious, you'll never want to order it from a restaurant again! But don't worry, if you're not a fan of beer you can leave it out and substitute it with a special secret ingredient and still get perfectly crispy results!
Delicious, crispy fish and chips are something I've always loved! I've always appreciated a large, hearty portion of seafood since I'm originally from New Brunswick, Canada!
When I'd go home to visit my Grammie in the past few years, she'd always ask for fish and chips takeaway to bring back as a special treat from the local diner down the road. Now, every time I make this recipe, it reminds me of how happy my Grammie would be when we'd bring her home some delicious crispy fish and chips with all the fixings. ❤
This comfort food classic is one of my favorites and I'm so happy to be able to share it with you!
I hope you enjoy this recipe! ❤️ If you give it a try, please let me know how it turned out for you in the comments section at the bottom of the page or share a pic of your om noms on Instagram and tag @dishesanddustbunnies! ❤️
What is beer batter made of?
Beer Battered Fish Ingredients
Beer batter for fried fish is made from a combination of dry ingredients such as all purpose flour, cornstarch, a little sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, onion and garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper. Cold beer is then combined with the dry ingredients to create the batter.
If you don't want to use beer in this recipe, simply substitute an equal amount of club soda – that's the secret ingredient! The batter will be just as crispy and delicious!
What is the best fish to use with beer batter?
It's best to use mild white fish such as haddock, halibut, or cod. You can use other fish such as sole or basa too, but highly recommend my personal favorite; haddock for its flaky firm texture!
Be sure to see the recipe card at the bottom of the post for full ingredients & instructions!
How to make Beer Battered Fish – Overview
You can find the full recipe details, including ingredient amounts and the full instructions, at the bottom of this post, but first, here's a quick overview on how to make beer battered fish.
Prepare the fish beer batter by combining the dry ingredients (flour, cornstarch, onion powder, garlic powder, seasonings, etc) and combining it with cold beer or club soda.
Remove any excess moisture from the surface by patting the fish dry with paper towel (pat gently). This is important so that the batter sticks to the fish while cooking. Next, dredge the fish in flour, dip them into the batter, then drop them into the hot oil of a preheated (375 °F) deep fryer (or heavy pot of oil on the stove).
The fish are cooked for 3-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Once cooked, they're placed on a wire rack over a baking sheet to drain and maintain their crispness while cooking the remaining fish.
Serve immediately with a side of classic “chips” or french fries, some coleslaw, lemon wedges, and tartar sauce.
What beer is best for fish batter?
There is no definitive answer to this question, as different beers will impart different flavors to the batter. However, a light, mildly flavored beer is generally a good option for fish batter. If you want to avoid using beer altogether, you can substitute sparkling water or club soda.
What does beer do in fish batter?
Beer helps to make the batter light and crispy. The beer also evaporates as it cooks, so you're left with fish that's not greasy or oily.
What can I use instead of beer in the fish batter?
Instead of using beer in your fish better, you can use club soda or soda water. Club soda aerates the batter, making it light and crispy!
How do you get the batter to stick to the fish?
To make sure that the batter sticks to your fish, make sure to pat it dry with a paper towel, then dredge in flour before dipping it into the batter.
Should I put an egg in my beer batter?
No, you don't need to put an egg in your beer batter.
Why is my fish batter not crispy?
There are a few things you can do to make your beer batter crispy. One is to use a light beer rather than a dark one, as the darker beers will make the batter more dense.
You can also add some extra leavening agents such as baking powder or soda to help it rise and create more bubbles, which will give it a crisper texture. Finally, make sure you fry the fish in oil that is hot enough so that it bubbles when you add the batter-coated fish to it. This will help to create a nice crispy outer coating.
Can you batter and fry frozen fish fillets?
In my experience, it's best to use fish that is fresh or has been thawed. Battering frozen fish fillets is not a good idea as the batter will slide off the fish when cooking. If you're using frozen fish, please be sure to thaw and dry them with paper towel before battering.
What to serve with Beer Battered Fish
Beer battered fish goes great with a side of classic “chips”, fries or tater tots! You can also try serving it with a side of coleslaw or macaroni salad.
Leftovers – How to Store and Reheat
Fried or breaded fish is best served immediately, however, if you do have leftovers, be sure to store them in an airtight container in the fridge and eat them within 2 days. To prevent the fish from sticking to each other while stored in the fridge, it's a good idea to wrap them in parchment paper.
To reheat: Place the battered fish on a wire rack over a cookie sheet and bake at 350°F for 10-15 minutes.
Crispy Beer Battered Fish (With or Without the Beer!)
- Total Time: 45 minutes
- Yield: 2 lbs of battered fish (# of servings depends on the size you cut the pieces) 1x
- 2 lbs fish – any firm white fish will work, but I recommend haddock, cod, or halibut
Please see my note at the bottom of the recipe about cutting the fish.
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup all-purpose flour – reserved for dredging the fish
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp salt
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp onion powder
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp paprika
(I used smoked paprika for this recipe, but regular or other varieties work fine too)
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- 2 cups (16 oz) *COLD* club soda OR beer
- Homemade “chips” – recipe coming soon!
- Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce
- Lemon wedges
Prepare the Fish
- Remove any extra moisture from your fish before battering it by patting each portion with paper towel. This step is important to ensure that the batter sticks to the fish.
Prepare the Fried Fish Batter
In a mixing bowl, using a whisk combine 1 ½ cups flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and black pepper.
- To the dry ingredients, add the club soda OR beer and mix until just combined. The mixture should look a little bubbly!
Cook the Battered Fish
- Before frying, make sure to preheat your oil to 375°F.
- Put the reserved ½ cup of flour in a shallow dish.
- Dredge the fish pieces in the reserved flour one at a time, then dip them into the batter. Let excess batter drip off and back into the mixing bowl. Drop the battered fish piece into the hot oil and cook for 3-5 minutes on each side or until golden.
- Once cooked, place the fish on a wire rack over a baking sheet. This is important to maintain the crispness of the fish. IMPORTANT: DO NOT lay the fish on paper towel as this will make them greasy and lose their crispness. While frying the remaining fish, you can keep the finished fish pieces in the oven to warm (at 200°F) while on the wire rack.
Serve immediately with a side of classic “chips,” some coleslaw, tartar sauce, and lemon wedges.
Cutting the fish:
The fish pieces may be cut to whatever size is most convenient for you and the capacity of your deep fryer. I prefer to fry one large whole piece at a time because, while my deep fryer can hold several small pieces, a big piece of fried fish on my plate reminds me so much of the type you get in restaurants! Looks and tastes impressive! It's entirely up to you how big you want your fish to be!
You may use a deep fryer or you can cook them in a large, heavy bottom pot with at least 3 inches of oil on the stove. Make sure that your oil is preheated to 375°F before frying your fish.
To prevent the fish from sticking to the bottom of the fry basket while cooking:
When frying, sometimes your fish will sink to the basket's bottom and adhere to it!
Tip #1: When dropping your battered fish into the deep fryer, hold it in the oil with your fingertips for a couple of seconds to fry it lightly, then allow it to fall in. This will allow the batter a chance to fry for a little before sinking down and becoming trapped on the basket's bottom.
Tip #2: Make sure the fry basket is fully immersed in oil before adding the fish. If you put a piece of freshly battered fish in the fry basket and then submerge it, the fish will stick to it.
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 30 minutes
- Category: Main
- Method: Frying
- Cuisine: English