Battered Fish
Battered Fish
5 from 2 votes
Battered Fish – it’s simple, it’s delicious, and it's irresistibly golden! This delightful seafood dish is a true crowd-pleaser, offering a taste of the ocean, reimagined in a home kitchen. A perfect blend of flavours and textures, this recipe promises a culinary experience that leaves a lasting impression.
Battered Fish

Ah, Battered Fish! Just saying the name brings a salivating sensation, doesn’t it? The dish’s history stretches across the oceans, with every coastal region adding its own spin.  

As I delve into the origins, it’s worth noting that we’re talking about a universally loved dish, prevalent in various forms, from British fish and chips to the tempura of Japan. 

Now, how difficult is it to replicate this joy in our own kitchens? Here’s a little secret: it’s easier than you might think! With the right ingredients, a dash of patience, and some culinary magic, you can whip up this delectable dish in no time. 

Let’s dig a little deeper into the origins. British fish and chips, perhaps the most recognized form of battered fish, became a staple in the 19th century. The amalgamation of a Belgian-style potato dish and fried fish introduced by Jewish immigrants resulted in a dish that would soon become a British icon.  

Now, it’s found in every nook and cranny of the British Isles, from London’s bustling city streets to the quaint seaside towns. 

But let’s not forget our Asian counterpart, Tempura. This dish, a delight in its own right, has roots tracing back to the Portuguese residing in Nagasaki in the 16th century. Over the years, the Japanese have skilfully adapted and refined this culinary art, adding it to their rich tapestry of cuisine. 

So, there you have it, battered fish, a testament to cultural exchange and culinary evolution. From the chilly Atlantic coasts to the vibrant streets of Tokyo, it’s fascinating how this dish has seamlessly integrated into diverse food cultures. 

Now, moving onto the fun part – the preparation! Fret not, my friend; it’s not as daunting as it may seem. The key is to create a light, crispy batter that perfectly complements the tender fish fillets.  

No worries if you’re not a seasoned chef; it’s a beginner-friendly recipe. With the right ingredients and the instructions I’ve laid out, you’re all set to amaze! 

Battered Fish – it’s a celebration of the sea, served up on a plate. It’s the familiar comfort of a well-loved dish, paired with the thrill of creating something new in your own kitchen. It’s food that transcends cultures, and it’s right at your fingertips. 

So why wait? Dive in! The world of battered fish awaits you. And who knows? You might just discover a hidden passion for the culinary arts along the way! Battering fish, after all, is just the beginning. There’s an entire ocean of recipes waiting to be explored. 

What Ingredients to Use & Why 

With Battered Fish, the beauty is in simplicity. The ingredients are basic yet essential, each playing a role in creating that perfect harmony between the golden, crispy batter and the tender, succulent fish.  

But, as with any recipe, understanding the why behind each ingredient can elevate your cooking from good to fantastic. Let’s dive into these ingredients and their purpose in our dish. 

White Fish Fillets: The star of the show is, of course, the fish. For this recipe, I recommend using white fish fillets such as cod or haddock. These are lean, mild-flavoured fish that are perfect for frying.  

The flesh of these fish is firm enough to hold together well during cooking but delicate enough to create a pleasing contrast with the crisp batter. If you don’t have these available, other firm white fish like pollock, halibut, or catfish can also work. 

All-Purpose Flour: This ingredient forms the base of the batter. It creates the structure that encases the fish, contributing to the light and crispy texture we all love. An alternative could be rice flour, which gives a lighter, even crispier finish. 

Baking Powder: This is the ingredient that makes the batter puff up and become airy and light when it hits the hot oil. Without it, the batter would be dense and heavy. If you don’t have baking powder, you could use beer instead of sparkling water; it contains yeast and will act similarly to lighten the batter. 

Salt: Salt is essential to bring out the flavours in our dish. It seasons both the fish and the batter and helps to balance out the flavours. 

Cold Sparkling Water: The bubbles in the sparkling water help to aerate the batter, making it light and crisp. The cold temperature also helps prevent the batter from becoming over-mixed, which would result in a tougher texture. If you don’t have sparkling water, you could use beer or soda water. 

Vegetable Oil: For deep-frying, vegetable oil is a great choice due to its high smoke point. It’s also neutral in flavour, so it won’t affect the taste of the fish or the batter. Alternatives could be canola oil or sunflower oil. 

Lemon Wedges: Serving the dish with lemon wedges allows guests to add a bit of tanginess to cut through the richness of the dish. It’s a classic. accompaniment to fried fish, highlighting and enhancing the flavour of the seafood. 

Each ingredient in our Battered Fish recipe has a role to play, contributing to the dish’s ultimate success.  

Whether it’s the flour creating the crispy structure or the baking powder giving the batter its lightness, each component has a purpose. Remember, understanding your ingredients and their function can be the key to mastering any recipe. 

With this newfound knowledge, you’re not only well-equipped to make a fantastic Battered Fish but also ready to experiment and perhaps even innovate.  

Because that’s what cooking is all about – understanding, experimenting, and above all, enjoying the journey. Now, go ahead, put on your chef’s hat and have fun cooking! 

The Best Type of Fish for Battered Fish 

There’s something truly delightful about biting into a piece of perfectly cooked Battered Fish. The crisp, golden exterior giving way to tender, flaky fish is a flavour combination that has won hearts around the globe. But let’s dig a little deeper.  

What’s the secret to achieving this perfect balance? The answer lies in selecting the right type of fish. 

When it comes to Battered Fish, I usually recommend white fish fillets such as cod or haddock. These varieties have lean, mild-flavoured flesh that perfectly complements the rich batter.  

The texture of these fish is firm enough to hold up well during the frying process, yet delicate enough to yield that perfect, tender bite. Cod, in particular, has large, succulent flakes that create a beautiful contrast with the crispy batter. 

Haddock, on the other hand, offers a slightly sweeter flavour. Its white, flaky meat and relatively firm texture make it another excellent choice for Battered Fish. But what if cod or haddock isn’t easily available or within budget? 

Fret not, my friend! There are numerous other options that work just as well. Other types of firm white fish such as pollock, halibut, or catfish can also deliver fantastic results. These fish are also lean and mild in flavour, making them an excellent canvas for the flavourful batter. 

What you ideally want to avoid is fish with a strong flavour or oily fish such as mackerel or salmon. These types of fish can overpower the simple, delicate flavour profile we’re aiming for in this dish. Plus, oily fish can often become tough when cooked at the high temperatures required for frying. 

To sum it up, the choice of fish can make or break your Battered Fish. Going for lean, white, and mildly flavoured fish varieties can ensure you hit the mark every time. Armed with this knowledge, you’re now ready to select the best fish next time you decide to whip up some delicious Battered Fish! 

The Art of Frying without Deep Frying for Battered Fish 

Ah, deep-fried food, how we love thee! But let’s face it, sometimes we all want to enjoy that delicious crispness without all the oil, right? Yes, I’m talking about making Battered Fish without deep frying. Is it possible? Absolutely! 

Now, to achieve the desired crispness without deep frying, there are a couple of methods you can resort to. The first one is pan-frying.  

Pan-frying requires less oil than deep frying, but can still give you a beautiful golden crust. You’ll want to heat a generous amount of oil in a frying pan – enough to come halfway up the sides of your fish pieces. The key here is to ensure that the oil is hot enough before you add your battered fish. 

Another option is oven baking. To mimic the effect of deep frying, you’ll need to preheat your oven to a high temperature and also preheat the baking tray with a bit of oil on it. When you add the fish, it will start cooking immediately, helping to create a crispy exterior. 

If you own an air fryer, this modern gadget can also come to your rescue. It works by circulating hot air around the food to cook it, which can provide a crispy finish similar to deep frying but without excessive oil.  

Just make sure to spray the battered fish with a little bit of oil before air frying to get that golden colour and crispy texture. 

It’s worth noting that while these alternatives can give you a lovely crispy Battered Fish, the result may not be exactly the same as deep frying. Deep frying quickly cooks the batter, creating a protective shell around the fish that alternatives are worth a shot! 

Deciphering the Oil Temperature for Frying 

Battered Fish perfection requires more than just the right type of fish and a good batter. It also demands the correct oil temperature. Yes, the difference between soggy, oily fish and crisp, golden perfection often comes down to this crucial detail: the heat of your oil. 

The magic number you’re aiming for when deep frying Battered Fish is approximately 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit). But how can you know when your oil has reached this temperature, especially if you don’t have a cooking thermometer at hand? 

One classic method is the ‘bread cube’ test. Drop a small cube of bread into the oil. If it turns golden brown in about a minute, your oil is ready for frying.  

If the bread cube browns too quickly or gets burnt, the oil is too hot, and you need to reduce the heat. If the bread cube takes too long to brown, you’ll need to heat the oil a little longer. 

Another way to check is to dip the handle of a wooden spoon or a wooden chopstick into the oil. If the oil bubbles steadily around the wood, it’s ready. If it bubbles vigorously, it’s too hot. If there are only a few to no bubbles, it needs more heating. 

Remember, maintaining the right oil temperature is crucial to achieving delicious, crispy Battered Fish. Too low, and your fish will soak up oil, becoming greasy and heavy.  

Too high, and the batter will burn before the fish is cooked through. So, pay attention to your oil’s heat, and you’ll be well on your way to creating the perfect Battered Fish! 

Why We Serve Lemon Wedges with Battered Fish 

Ever wondered why we often serve battered fish with a wedge of lemon on the side? It’s not just for the visual appeal, though it does add a nice pop of colour to the plate.  

The role of the humble lemon wedge goes beyond the aesthetic, offering a culinary benefit that enhances the overall dining experience. 

Lemon and fish are a classic combination, and there’s science to back it up. You see, fish contains amines, compounds derived from amino acids, which can sometimes give off a slight fishy odour. The acidity in lemon neutralizes these amines, reducing any fishy smell or taste. 

Additionally, the sharp, bright flavour of lemon cuts through the richness of the fried batter, providing a beautiful contrast that enlivens the palate. It’s like a refreshing burst of sunshine on a cloudy day. Just a squeeze of lemon can elevate your battered fish from delicious to truly divine. 

Now, while lemons are a traditional choice, they’re not the only option. Other acidic elements can serve the same purpose. Think vinegar, other citrus fruits like lime or grapefruit, or even tart fruits like cranberries.  

So, next time you’re serving up battered fish, don’t forget that squeeze of acid for a perfect balance of flavours. 

Understanding the Role of Baking Powder in Battered Fish 

If you’ve ever wondered why we add baking powder to the batter in our Battered Fish recipe, you’re about to discover its magic. Baking powder, my friends, is a key player when it comes to creating that light, crispy batter we all love so much. 

In essence, baking powder is a leavening agent, and it’s composed of an alkali, an acid, and a filler, usually corn starch. When baking powder gets wet, the alkali and acid interact to create carbon dioxide gas.  

When it’s heated, it creates even more gas. This gas gets trapped in the batter, creating little pockets of air. 

These pockets of air are what give our batter that beautiful lightness and crispiness. They expand when the batter is fried, creating that delightful airy texture.  

If you’ve ever bitten into a piece of battered fish and marvelled at the thin, crispy crust that gives way to tender, juicy fish, you have baking powder to thank for that. 

Now, can you make Battered Fish without baking powder? Sure, but you might end up with a denser, less crispy crust. If you find yourself out of baking powder, you can use baking soda and cream of tartar in its place.  

Use two parts cream of tartar to one part baking soda, and you’ve got yourself a homemade baking powder substitute. 

In a pinch, you can even use beer or sparkling water in place of the baking powder. These beverages are carbonated, so they’ll add some lightness to your batter, but the result may not be quite the same. 

So, there you have it. The next time you’re whisking together your batter for Battered Fish, remember the critical role that little teaspoon of baking powder plays. It’s the secret weapon behind every light, crispy, golden piece of Battered Fish you create. 

Preventing Batter from Sticking to the Bottom of the Pan 

You’ve mixed your batter, prepped your fish, and you’re all set for some frying action. Then, as you gently lower your first piece of fish into the oil, you notice the batter is sticking to the bottom of the pan. Uh-oh! But fret not, I have a few tips to prevent this common kitchen dilemma. 

First and foremost, ensure your oil is hot enough before you start frying. The ideal temperature for deep-frying battered fish is approximately 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit). Cold oil doesn’t immediately seal the batter, causing it to stick to the bottom of the pan instead. 

Second, don’t just drop the fish into the pan from a height. Hold it at the surface of the oil for a few seconds before releasing it. This way, the batter has a chance to cook a bit and form a shell, which reduces sticking. 

Third, ensure you don’t overcrowd your pan. Too many pieces of fish can lower the oil’s temperature and cause sticking. Cook in batches, giving each piece of fish enough room to swim around. 

Lastly, a non-stick pan or a well-seasoned cast-iron skillet can be your best friend when it comes to frying. They have surfaces designed to reduce sticking, making your cooking experience a whole lot smoother. 

And there you have it. With these tips in your culinary arsenal, you’ll be frying up batches of non-stick Battered Fish in no time! 

Perfect Pairings for Battered Fish 

When it comes to pairing side dishes with Battered Fish, the culinary world is your oyster. The key is balancing flavours and textures to complement the crispy, tender fish. Let’s explore a few tantalizing options. 

Classic Fish and Chips is a tried and true pairing. The soft, fluffy interior of the chips (or fries, as they’re known stateside) perfectly complements the crispness of the battered fish. Consider adding a side of mushy peas or coleslaw for an authentic British touch. 

For a lighter option, a fresh, crisp salad can do wonders. A green salad with a tangy vinaigrette, or a tomato and cucumber salad sprinkled with fresh herbs, can cut through the richness of the fish and provide a refreshing contrast. 

Another lovely accompaniment to battered fish is a side of grilled or roasted vegetables. Think sweet bell peppers, zucchini, or eggplant, perhaps with a drizzle of balsamic glaze. The slight char and sweetness of the vegetables offset the savoury fish nicely. 

If you want to get creative, consider serving your battered fish in a taco with some spicy salsa and creamy avocado. Or, serve it on a bed of tangy Asian slaw for a fusion twist. 

Don’t forget the sauce! Tartare sauce is traditional, but you could also offer ketchup, malt vinegar, or a squeeze of fresh lemon. 

Whether you opt for the traditional or decide to experiment with something new, the most important thing is to create a meal you’ll enjoy. After all, the best pairings are those that make your tastebuds dance with joy. 

Storing and Reheating Leftover Battered Fish 

Let’s face it, sometimes our eyes are bigger than our stomachs, and we end up with leftover Battered Fish. Don’t worry! Leftovers can be just as delicious if stored and reheated properly. Let’s delve into the art of dealing with leftover Battered Fish. 

To store, let the Battered Fish cool completely at room temperature. Don’t leave it out for more than two hours, as bacteria can multiply rapidly at room temperature.  

Once cool, transfer the fish to airtight containers or tightly wrap in aluminium foil or plastic wrap. Store in the refrigerator and consume within 2-3 days for the best quality. 

When you’re ready to reheat, the oven is your best bet. Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit). Place the fish on a baking sheet and heat for about 15-20 minutes, or until heated through. This method helps to keep the batter crispy and the fish moist. 

A toaster oven or air fryer can also work well for reheating, as they circulate hot air and recreate the original cooking method. Avoid the microwave, as it tends to make the batter soggy. 

Remember, safety first! Always ensure leftovers reach an internal temperature of at least 74 degrees Celsius (165 degrees Fahrenheit) to eliminate any potential bacteria. 

Using Gluten-Free Flour for Battered Fish 

If you’re following a gluten-free diet or cooking for someone who is, you might be wondering if you can still enjoy the delight that is Battered Fish. The answer is a resounding yes! Gluten-free flours can absolutely be used to make the batter for Battered Fish. 

Rice flour is a popular choice, as it’s naturally gluten-free and has a light texture that results in a crisp, golden crust. You can use it in a 1:1 ratio to replace all-purpose flour in the batter recipe. 

A blend of gluten-free flours can also work well. Many supermarkets sell gluten-free flour blends that are designed to mimic the properties of wheat flour. They usually contain a mix of rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca starch, among others. They can also be used in a 1:1 ratio in your batter recipe. 

Bear in mind that gluten-free flours absorb liquid differently than wheat flour. You may need to adjust the amount of sparkling water to achieve the right batter consistency. Start with less water and add more as needed. 

Finally, always ensure all other ingredients and your cooking oil are gluten-free. Cross-contamination can occur if the same oil is used to fry foods containing gluten. 

So, there you have it. With a few tweaks, Battered Fish can indeed be a part of a gluten-free diet. Now go forth and fry up some delicious, gluten-free Battered Fish! 

Making Battered Fish Batter Ahead of Time 

Sometimes we all need a little bit of a head start in the kitchen. The idea of making your Battered Fish batter ahead of time certainly has its appeal. But can you do it? The answer, in short, is yes. However, there are a few things to keep in mind if you want to retain the quality of the batter. 

Firstly, batter made with baking powder as a raising agent is best used straight away. The moment liquid meets baking powder, it starts producing gas that helps create a light and crispy batter. If you let the batter sit, the gas dissipates, and your batter might lose some of its puff. 

However, if you’re prepping a few hours ahead, you can still get away with it. Mix your dry ingredients—flour, baking powder, and salt—and leave them at room temperature. When you’re ready to start frying, you can quickly stir in the cold sparkling water. 

If you need to prepare the batter a day ahead, refrigerate the mixture. This slows down the gas reaction, so you’ll still have some lift when it’s time to fry. But remember to whisk it again before dipping your fish to ensure it’s well combined. 

Achieving the Crispiest Battered Fish 

There’s nothing quite like the crunch of biting into a perfectly cooked piece of Battered Fish. That golden, crisp exterior giving way to tender, flaky fish…it’s enough to make any mouth water. But how can you achieve that level of crispness? Here are some tips. 

The key to a crispy batter is the temperature of your oil. Too low, and the batter will absorb the oil and become greasy. Too high, and it’ll burn before the fish is cooked. Aim for an oil temperature of around 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit). 

Sparkling water in the batter helps create a lighter, airier batter which turns wonderfully crisp when fried. Make sure your water is ice-cold. Cold batter going into hot oil creates steam, which helps to keep the batter light and crispy. 

Your choice of flour also plays a role. All-purpose flour works well, but for an extra crispy batter, consider mixing in some rice flour or cornflour. These flours fry up crispier than wheat flour and can give your batter that extra crunch. 

Lastly, don’t overcrowd your pan. Overcrowding lowers the oil’s temperature and causes the fish to steam rather than fry. Leave enough space between the pieces to allow the oil to circulate. 

By following these tips, you’re well on your way to the crispiest Battered Fish of your culinary career. 

Check Out These Other Recipes 

First things first, let me assure you that if you’re a fan of our Battered Fish recipe, you are going to be totally hooked on these others. I’ve hand-picked a few that, while they may not all involve the same battered technique, have that tantalizing taste of the sea that’ll leave you wanting more. 

The Fish Curry is just begging to be tried. I promise it’s a captivating symphony of warm spices and tender fish pieces. The depth of flavour will whisk you away to coastal regions where seafood rules the kitchen. Once you’ve tried it, I believe you won’t be able to resist the lure of Fish Curry again. 

Then, there’s the Coconut Prawn Curry. Let me tell you, it’s a true joy to the palate. Imagine juicy prawns, bathing in a creamy, coconut-infused sauce. It’s the kind of dish that makes your taste buds dance with delight. 

Next up, is the Tuna Pasta Bake. You might think, “Tuna and Pasta? Together?” And to that, I say “Absolutely!”. It’s a heartwarming combination of succulent tuna chunks with pasta, all drenched in a sumptuous sauce and baked to perfection. A heartier seafood dish, perfect for those comfort food days. 

And we can’t forget the Masala Fish. You see, it’s got that touch of Indian spice magic, making it a delightful culinary adventure. The mix of traditional spices with flaky fish will make your senses come alive. 

Finally, the Fish Tikka – it’s all about taking fish to another level. Just envision tender fish pieces marinated in a medley of yoghurt and aromatic spices, then grilled to smoky perfection. It’s a flavour journey that’s sure to leave you entranced. 

So there you have it, my recommendations for anyone who’s a fan of Battered Fish. You’ll find the full recipes on our website, each one ready and waiting to transform your kitchen into a seafood paradise.  

And hey, I’d love to hear how these dishes turn out for you. Let’s share our seafood love in the comments section, shall we? 

Battered Fish

Battered Fish

by Nabeela Kauser
Battered Fish – it’s simple, it’s delicious, and it's irresistibly golden! This delightful seafood dish is a true crowd-pleaser, offering a taste of the ocean, reimagined in a home kitchen.
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine British, Western
Servings 4
Calories 257 kcal


  • 500 g Fish Cod, haddock
  • 150 g Plain Flour
  • 1 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 250 ml Sparkling Water Cold
  • Vegetable Oil For frying


  • Start by preparing the fish fillets. Rinse them under cold water and pat them dry with paper towels. Cut them into evenly sized pieces and set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Whisk together until well combined.
  • Gradually pour in the cold sparkling water while whisking the flour mixture. Continue whisking until the batter is smooth and lump-free. The consistency should be similar to a thick pancake batter. If it's too thick, add a little more sparkling water. Set aside for a few minutes.
  • In a deep frying pan or pot, heat vegetable oil to a depth of about 2-3 cm (1 inch). Heat the oil over medium-high heat until it reaches a temperature of approximately 180 degrees Celsius (350 degrees Fahrenheit).
  • Dip each piece of fish into the batter, ensuring it is completely coated. Allow any excess batter to drip off before carefully placing the battered fish into the hot oil. Fry the fish in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan.
  • Cook the fish for about 3-4 minutes on each side or until the batter turns golden brown and crispy. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to carefully flip the fish halfway through cooking.
  • Once cooked, remove the fish from the oil and transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate to drain off any excess oil.
  • Serve the Battered Fish hot with lemon wedges on the side for squeezing over the fish. It pairs well with tartar sauce, coleslaw, or chips (fries).


It’s important to maintain the oil temperature throughout the frying process. You can use a kitchen thermometer to check and adjust the heat as needed. Be cautious when working with hot oil to prevent any accidents.
Nutritional facts:
The provision of nutritional information is done so merely as a courtesy and should not be taken as a guarantee.


Calories: 257kcalCarbohydrates: 29gProtein: 29gFat: 2gSaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 63mgSodium: 476mgPotassium: 419mgFibre: 1gSugar: 0.1gVitamin D: 4µgCalcium: 80mgIron: 3mg
Keyword Cooking, Fish, Food, Fried, Recipe, Seafood
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Cook with Nabeela

Hi, I'm Nabeela!

I love to cook! I want to share with you my favourite, delicious family-friendly recipes. I want to inspire you to create fantastic food for your family every day.

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