Gluten-Free Beer-Battered Fried Fish

Gluten-Free Beer-Battered Fried Fish on a plate

The Spruce Eats

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 10 mins
Total: 20 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Yield: 2 pounds
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
429 Calories
21g Fat
27g Carbs
27g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 429
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 21g 27%
Saturated Fat 4g 19%
Cholesterol 63mg 21%
Sodium 610mg 27%
Total Carbohydrate 27g 10%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 27g
Vitamin C 1mg 7%
Calcium 81mg 6%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 327mg 7%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This recipe for gluten-free beer-battered fried fish produces a crisp, light, and golden end result without the gluten. This batter also is perfect for onion rings and other vegetables. Try it with shrimp—it's delicious.

When it comes to crispy fried fish, it's all about the batter. Without regular flour, you might think it would fall flat. But the batter is dependent on air more than the type of flour you use. The air comes from adding a carbonated liquid like beer (in this case, gluten-free beer) or club soda to the thick batter. The second factor in light and golden fish is properly heated frying oil—when the fish hits the oil, the batter rises and puffs up around it, keeping it crisp.

A mild-flavored white fish like cod, pollock, or even tilapia is the way to go when making this recipe, and a good-quality gluten-free all-purpose mix without xanthan gum or guar gum like Bob's Red Mill All-Purpose Gluten-Free Baking Mix is ideal. Serve gluten-free beer-battered fish with sides like french fries and coleslaw.

"What a light and crispy treat! This tastes great as a gluten-free option. Nothing is missed." —Renae Wilson

Beer Battered Fried Fish on a wire rack over a baking sheet
A Note From Our Recipe Tester


  • 1 cup gluten-free all-purpose baking mix (like Bob's Red Mill)

  • 1 cup cornstarch

  • 1 teaspoon gluten-free baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon sugar

  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper

  • 12 ounces gluten-free beer, or club soda

  • 1 cup oil, preferably peanut or coconut oil, for high-heat frying

  • 8 (4-ounce) skinless cod fillets, patted dry with a paper towel

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for gluten-free beer-battered fried fish gathered

    The Spruce Eats

  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the gluten-free flour, cornstarch, baking powder, sugar, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. 

    Dry ingredients mixed in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats

  3. Add gluten-free beer or club soda and mix until the batter is smooth and not too thick or too thin. Add more liquid if the batter is too thick (it should be a bit runny, but you shouldn't be able to see the fish through it).

    Fried fish batter mixed in a bowl with a whisk

    The Spruce Eats

  4. Heat the oil over medium heat in a large skillet to 375 F. If you don't have a thermometer, you can tell if the oil is hot enough when bubbles form around a chopstick or skewer when it is placed in the oil.

    Oil heated in a pan using a thermometer

    The Spruce Eats

  5. When the oil has come up to temperature, dip the fillets in the batter one at a time making sure both sides are coated. Hold above the bowl to let excess batter drip off.

    Fish fillet dipped in beer batter in a bowl

    The Spruce Eats

  6. Carefully place fish in the hot oil and fry for 3 minutes or until the batter has set. Fry the fish in batches of 2 to 4 pieces at a time, depending on the size of the skillet.

    Fish fillets frying in a skillet

    The Spruce Eats

  7. Using a spatula, turn and cook for another 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown. If you have an infrared thermometer, use it to check the fish, which should be at 145 F (a conventional instant-read thermometer won't work because the fish is too thin to take an accurate temperature). Otherwise, take a peek inside with a thin knife. The fish should be white and opaque when done.

    Gluten-free beer-battered fried fish cooking in the pan

    The Spruce Eats

  8. To keep the first batch warm while you fry the remaining fillets, transfer to a rimmed baking sheet and place in a heated 250 F oven for up to 20 minutes. Finish frying the rest of the fish.

    Gluten-free beer-battered fried fish on a baking sheet

    The Spruce Eats

  9. Drain on paper towels and serve while still warm.

    Gluten-free beer-battered fried fish draining on a towel with lemons

    The Spruce Eats

Gluten-Free Reminder

Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans, and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.


  • If you're wondering if cornstarch is gluten free, the answer is yes. Pure cornstarch is gluten free due to the starch being made from corn. However, not every brand of cornstarch is considered gluten free due to the way that it is manufactured. Some manufacturers don't always take the necessary precautions to prevent cross-contamination when it comes to processing and packaging gluten-free items; they use the same facility in which they process other grain products. That being said, make sure to read the labels on all products you purchase to ensure that you are buying gluten-free items.
  • Reminder: Make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans, and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.

What Can I Use Instead of Beer for Fish Batter?

Beer adds delicious flavor and airy texture to fish batter. If you don't have beer handy or prefer not to use it, use club soda instead. Gluten-free beer can be used for those on a gluten-free diet.