Make restaurant-quality, English style fish and chips in your own kitchen in less than 20-minutes! Easy recipe with simple ingredients and a no-beer batter!
Fish and chips is one of the most popular menu items in the United Kingdom, but you don't have to fly across the big pond to enjoy this crispy British cuisine!
With this easy recipe, you can make tender white fish, coated in a light and crispy no-beer batter in your own kitchen!
Classic fish and chips is the quintessential British food! It consists of fried whitefish, usually cod or haddock, coated in a beer (or no-beer) batter, then lightly fried and served with potato "chips," or french fries.
Enjoy this British pub-fare with a side of malt vinegar or tartar sauce.
You'll love this recipe!
Sparkling or carbonated water is the secret ingredient that keeps this no beer batter light, fluffy and crispy!
- No Beer? No Problem - you probably have the ingredients for no beer batter in your kitchen
- Quick - fish cooks fast! Each filet is ready in about 10-minutes--5-minutes per side!
- Two-Step-Prep - Two bowl clean-up...in and out of the kitchen in no time!
Ingredients and seasonings for No Beer batter
Ingredients: flour, baking powder, cornstarch, carbonated or sparkling water
Seasonings: salt, pepper, paprika and cayenne pepper
Chips: frozen steak fries or thinly sliced peeled potatoes
This recipe uses frozen steak fries which cook up beautifully! Bake "chips" according to package while you're cooking the fish.
How to make it
Pat the fish dry, then follow these directions:
What type of fish do I use?
Make this English fish dish with either cod or haddock. Both are thick whitefish that hold up well to high heat.
According to the National Federation of Fish Friers, there are over 10,000 fish specialists in the United Kingdom and over 60% of these fisheries use cod and 25% use haddock.
Beer or No-Beer?
In order to produce a light, fluffy coating, carbon dioxide must be present in the batter.
The combination of baking powder and carbonated or sparkling water makes the no-beer batter light and fluffy.
The science behind it
In Ireland and the UK, the batter recipe is typically water, flour, baking soda and vinegar, which is the activating "acid" that helps produce carbon dioxide and makes the batter light.
This recipe calls for baking powder instead of baking soda because baking powder already contains an acid--cream of tartar!
After you give the fish a quick dip in cornstarch (which reduces glutenization of the flour and ensures a light, crispy coating), dredge the fish in batter and fry.
Note: make the batter last. You want the bubbles from the carbon dioxide to "fluff" the fish coating.
If you let the batter sit out, the bubbles go away and the coating will not be as light.
The batter consistency is thick, which lends itself to sticking to the fish and producing a crispy bite of fish!
Frying Oil and temperature
For best results, use an oil that is tolerant of high-heat such as peanut, walnut, grapeseed, vegetable or canola oil. The ideal temperature of the oil is between 312 and 350ºF, which is really hot!
Make sure you heat the oil and a heavy-duty stock pot or cast-iron skillet and use long-handled tongs.
Frying fish at home and in such a hot temperature can be a bit intimidating, if not outright scary! The fish fries up nicely when the oil is around 312-320ºF.
It takes a few minutes longer to reach the ideal internal temperature of 145ºF, but I feel safer working with a lower temperature.
How long do I fry the fish?
Generally speaking, a one-inch thick piece of cod or haddock takes about 10-minutes total to fry (about 5-minutes per side); however, times may vary due to the type and heat of the oil, as well as the thickness of the fish filet.
To ensure it's completely cooked, use a thermometer. Once the filet reaches 145ºF at the thickest part of the filet, remove it from the oil and drain on a paper towel.
The best way to reheat no-beer batter fish and chips is to place them on a wire rack in a 300ºF oven and bake for 15 minutes uncovered. If you use a microwave or wrap the fish in foil, the crust gets soggy.
Serve this crispy no beer batter fish and chips with malt vinegar, tartar sauce or maple baked beans!
I like to serve no-beer batter fish and chips with a dash of malt vinegar and Creamy Creole Coleslaw!
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Fish and Chips No Beer Batter Recipe
- Heavy bottom pan for high-heat cooking; cast-iron recommended
- Long-handled tongs
- 1½-2 lbs. whitefish cod, haddock
- 3-4 cups oil (canola, vegetable, peanut-not olive oil)
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 cups flour , all-purpose
- 1 cup cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon paprika , smoky
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1½ cups sparkling water or club soda
- 1 package Frozen steak fries
- Kosher salt , for garnish
- Malt vinegar , for dipping
- Place frozen steak fries in oven and cook according to package directions1 package Frozen steak fries
- Pat fish dry with paper towel1½-2 lbs. whitefish
- Cut fish into pieces; lightly salt and pepper
- Pour cornstarch in a medium size bowl1 cup cornstarch
- Heat oil (medium-high heat; keep an eye on the oil while you're making the batter!)3-4 cups oil
Make the batter and fry
- Combine flour, baking powder, cayenne, paprika, salt and pepper in large bowl2 teaspoons salt, 2 cups flour, 1 tablespoon baking powder, ½ teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon pepper
- Pour in sparkling water; combine well1½ cups sparkling water
- Dip fish pieces into cornstarch; shake off excess and dredge in batter1 cup cornstarch
- Place battered fish in hot oil and cook approximately 5 minutes per side or until golden brown; internal temperature should be 145ºF
- Place hot fish on paper towel; sprinkle with kosher salt and a drizzle of malt vinegarKosher salt, Malt vinegar
- Remove chips from oven and serve with malt vinegar or tartar sauce