This crispy Beer Battered Fish is a must-make for your next fish and chips feast. The flavorful beer batter is perfectly seasoned, and it complements the flaky white fish beautifully.
How to Choose the Right Beer for Fish and Chips
When it comes to making beer batter, the most important ingredient choice is the beer. Since all beer isn't created equal, my rule of thumb is much the same as cooking with wine. Choose a beer that you would like to drink.
Just a few pointers:
- If you're a stout fan, hands down it's Guinness for the win. Full bodied, slightly sweet and bold.
- Mass produced beers such as Pabst Blue Ribbon or Coors will give sufficient airiness to the batter but, tend to add a less intense beer flavor. This is perfect for those, who aren't really looking for the flavor punch of beer from the batter. Each to their own.
- A brown beer, such as Newcastle, will give the batter caramel undertones without the bitter aftertaste.
- An IPA or pale ale, can be used as well. Choose a quality beer, as the hops can leave a bitter aftertaste. A good choice of pale ale would be Harpoon IPA.
Helpful Tips for Making Beer Battered Fish
- As discussed above, begin with your favorite flavored beer for the batter.
- I use cod for this recipe but, you may use any flaky white fish.
- This beer batter works equally well for onion rings.
- You may cut the fish fillets into any proportions you like. Larger pieces may take slightly longer to cook while, bite-size pieces will take less time. Adjust accordingly.
- Fried fish is best made and eaten so, it's not an ideal choice for make-ahead dining. If you have a deep fryer you can take outside or burners on your gas grill, a fish fry is a fun excuse to enjoy outdoor cooking.
- The best oil to use is, one that won't add or change the flavor of the batter. I like to use vegetable or canola oil. Peanut oil works great, too.
Dishes to Serve with Fried Fish
If you prefer to make the "chips" for fish and chips in the oven, checkout my recipe for oven fried blackened potato wedges. Cilantro lime cole slaw is a nice addition to the menu as well as classic hushpuppies to round-out the meal. You may also enjoy this recipe for tarter sauce from Miss in the Kitchen.
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Beer Battered Fish
- 2 - 2 ½ lbs cod fillets cut into 4 x 2-inch pieces
- ¼ teaspoon salt adjust to taste
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper adjust to taste
- 1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon seafood seasoning i.e. Old Bay or similar
- ½ teaspoon seasoned salt
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 large egg beaten
- 1 cup beer
- 6-8 cups vegetable oil for frying
- Place the oil in a deep pot or dutch oven and heat to 365-370°F.
- Rinse and pat dry the cod fillets. Season lightly with salt and black pepper on all sides. Set aside.
- In a shallow bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, baking powder, seafood seasoning, seasoned salt, paprika, garlic and onion powders. Remove ⅓ cup to a separate shallow dish.
- Whisk egg and beer into remaining dry ingredients until fully combined to form batter.
- Dip the coated cod fillet first into the reserved dry ingredients then into the batter allowing any excess to drip off. Carefully lower into the oil.
- Cook in batches for 6-8 minutes total, turning as needed until deep golden brown. Have nearby a pan lined with paper towels to drain. Season lightly with additional seasoned salt immediately upon removing from oil.
- Serve immediately with chips, malt vinegar or tarter sauce.