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fried fish in fish batter
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4.93 from 42 votes

Basic Fish Batter

Basic fish batter contains only four simple ingredients, but produces the crispiest battered fish that you can imagine. Unlike many fish batter recipes, this basic fish batter contains no beer. Also, it doesn't contain spices that will mask the delicate taste of the fish.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
Total Time15 minutes
Course: Dinner
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 71kcal


  • 4 ounces all-purpose flour (¾ cup plus 1 Tablespoon)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ¾ cup (6-ounces) water (See Tip 1)
  • 6 pieces (3 to 4 ounces each) fresh cod or other white fish (See Tip 2)
  • Peanut oil for frying (See Tip 3)


  • Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl. Add water; whisk until the fish batter is smooth.
  • Heat oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat to 360°F. Dip fish into batter, allowing excess to drip off. Place in hot oil. Cook until golden brown on one side, about 5 minutes. Turn and cook on the other side until golden brown, another 5 minutes. Drain well. (See Tip 4)
  • Yield: 6 servings. (See Tip 5)


  1. If you prefer a thicker batter, reduce the amount of water to 5 ounces.
  2. Unless you can purchase locally caught fish at a local fish market, your best bet for freshness is to purchase good quality frozen fish and thaw it right before cooking.
  3. I like to use peanut oil for frying because of its high temperature quality. However, you can also use regular vegetable oil. I would not, however use olive oil in this recipe.
  4. I would recommend discarding any unused batter. 
  5. For traditional fish and chips, serve the batter fried fish with mushy peas, French fries (a.k.a. chips) and malt vinegar on the side.


Calories: 71kcal | Carbohydrates: 15g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 293mg | Potassium: 125mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 1IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 1mg