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Crispy Beer-Battered Fish

A local restaurant made a similar breading for shrimp po' boys, but we think this version's better. I serve the beer battered fish with a ranch dressing and hot sauce mixture as a dip. —Jenny Wenzel, Gulfport, Mississippi
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. Cook: 5 min./batch
  • Makes
    4 servings


  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Creole seasoning
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 1/3 cup beer or nonalcoholic beer
  • 2 cups crushed unsalted top saltines (about 40)
  • 4 cod fillets (6 ounces each)
  • Oil for deep-fat frying


  • In a shallow bowl, combine the cornstarch, baking powder, salt, Creole seasoning, paprika, cayenne and 1/2 cup flour. Stir in milk and beer until smooth. Place crackers and remaining flour in separate shallow bowls. Coat fillets with flour, then dip in batter and coat with crackers.
  • In an electric skillet or deep-fat fryer, heat oil to 375°. Fry fish in batches for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
Want to cast a wider net? Check out these 40 easy fish recipes that are ready in 30 minutes or less!
Nutrition Facts
1 fillet: 513 calories, 27g fat (3g saturated fat), 66mg cholesterol, 775mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 30g protein.

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Average Rating:
  • Monica
    Jun 6, 2020

    This is by far the best recipe I have tried!

  • BradleyMac
    Mar 19, 2020

    Really good, used Halibut, nice

  • Tami
    Feb 26, 2020

    This was phenomenal! I couldn’t get a better order of fish and chips in a restaurant!! I tweeked the recipe as per Tony’s 4/19 comments. I used corn flake crumbs instead of cracker crumbs, and whole milk. I did use Bud Light as my beer. I used Canola oil for frying in a cast iron skillet. It was so crisp and crunchy, the costing, and the fish was cooked to perfection!! I didn’t make my own fries because my oven is down, so I made my fries in the toaster oven, and seasoned with Old Bay.

  • Tony
    Apr 18, 2019

    Thisis identical to the one I use in my restaurant except for the saltine crackers and 2% milk. **This is a top notch recipe! I've been using it for catfish filets and or nuggets instead of cod fish for years. It makes for a dynamite catfish po-boy too. My only differences are that I use crumbled corn flakes instead of saltine crackers and whole milk instead of 2%. Lastly Make sure the beer used is a lager, stout or pilsner ... don't use Mexican urinal water, near-beer or "lite" beer. It has to be a full bodied beer. There is no need to let the beer go flat to fight the fiz either... adding the milk the same time you add the beer takes care of that problem. I serve it with my version of a Mississippi Come Back Sauce. To Simplysandi ... if you're thinking to use bread crumbs, think panko instead ... you'll get a better crunch. Or for true cajun technique, use cornmeal and flour mix.

  • Simplysandi
    Mar 3, 2017

    Can't wate to try this receipt. Can you use bread crumbs for crackers?

  • I_Fortuna
    Feb 12, 2016

    I believe baking soda is better to use than baking powder. It does need to be replenished, however, if left to stand too long. Also, club soda (seltzer water) can be used instead of beer but beer produces more of a bubbly batter or you can add a little lemon or lime to a club soda batter and it will create more bubbles.

  • KimberlyRL
    Apr 9, 2015

    Great batter. I used Old Bay seasoning. My family loves fish fries and this recipe is a hit!

  • gucci65
    Mar 5, 2015

    Use any kind of fish. I have used haddock and cod. Wonderful. !

  • LMCheatham
    Jan 19, 2015

    Can't wait to try this. Does any fish work well? (I am a catfish lover). Please advise. Thank you, absolutely LOVE your recipes.

  • tastyneedle
    Dec 24, 2014

    Excellent! Very crispy and tasty batter! The fish was better than any we've ever made at home. My husband is a picky eater and he not only cleaned his plate but went back for seconds! The only change I made to the recipe was to use cajun seasoning as I could not find creole. I crushed the saltine crackers in my blender to make them extra fine. Will absolutely make this again!