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Best Beer Batter Recipe: How to Make It & 6 Must Know Tips

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Best Beer Battered Fish

Learning how to make the best beer batter recipe is very rewarding, but getting it spot on requires more than just a great recipe.

There are 6 critical things needed to make the best beer batter. Before I jump into these, rest assured there is an awesome beer batter recipe below.

So what are the 6 most important things when making beer batter?

They're simple, and once you know them you'll never forget them. Guaranteed to make you look like a master chef and impress friends and family!

So here they are:

1. Only Use a Cold Beer

Some beer batter recipes will say to add ice or place the beer batter in the fridge to 'rest' for 30 minutes.

Forget it!

Adding ice will water down your batter and refrigerating the beer batter just takes time. Simply start with a cold beer and you'll be one step ahead.

Two more reasons to use a cold beer?

The secret to great batter is to go from very cold to very hot, very quickly.

And if you take a cheeky sip while preparing the beer batter it's better cold than warm!

2. Use Self Raising Flour

There is no need for bicarb soda or yeast. Just use self raising flour. Also, the flour does not need to be sifted.

Self raising flour will make the batter light and crisp.

3. Don't Overwork The Batter.

Having some lumps in the beer batter is OK.

People often overwork their beer batter with a whisk. Not good. This takes extra effort and isn't unnecessary. A few lumps here and there in the batter is a good thing.

4. Choose The Right Beer

Skip this step at your peril. This one choice can make or break your dish. Here’s a simple guide to selecting the perfect beer to compliment the fish you’re using.

Flathead / Barramundi –  Lager or Pale Ale

Cod –  Pale Ale or English Bitter

Sardines –  Lager

Oysters –  Stout or Porter

5. Hot Oil

Frying something in oil that isn't hot enough results in soggy food. The goal is light and crispy.

heat your oil to 180º C (350ºF)

6. Don’t Overcrowd

Overcrowding the fryer or pan can lead to soggy food.


Placing too many cold pieces of fish into hot oil will make the oil temperature drop. 


The secret to great batter is to go from very cold to very hot, very quickly.

If you are doing a lot of pieces of fish either get a larger pot with more hot oil or deep fry batches of fish at a time. Once each batch is cooked you can keep them warm in an oven set to 100º C until the final batch is cooked.

Now for the recipe...


Fish of your choice (boneless and skinless)

330ml of cold beer of your choice

220g (1 ½ cup) self raising flour

½ cup rice flour (or plain flour)

Salt and pepper to season

Vegetable oil for frying


1. Cut fish into even pieces to ensure cooking times will be consistent.

2. Make the beer batter by gently mixing the beer with self raising flour, salt and pepper in a bowl. Use a fork to mix and do not overwork the batter. Some lumps are OK.

3. Coat each piece of fish with rice/plain flour. This will give the batter something to attach too.

4. Dip each piece of fish into the batter and place in oil.

5. Cook until golden brown and then place on paper towel to absorb residual oil.

Serve with garden salad, chips and a few wedges of lemon.


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