beer battered fish tacos with spicy slaw

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beer battered angelfish tacos with spicy slaw

A whole cluster of circumstances led me to create this recipe. Including; a desire to create a summery recipe using beer for an article I was contributing to,  a love of Mexican food, inspiration from my favourite Mexican restaurant El Burro, and stumbling on these delicious flavour combinations while messing around in my kitchen a few weeks ago.

So what you want is nice crispy golden fish.  As fresh as possible.  I used angelfish because its cheap, tasty and very sustainable (Green on SASSI).  You can also just lightly pan fry the fish pieces in olive oil or chilli infused olive oil after you have dusted these in flour.  I like to season the flour with smoked paprika , salt and pepper.

Coleslaw is a really nice way to give these tacos texture and juiciness, as well as to carry the added spice and heat.

You could also add avocado slices or guacamole. There are no rules.

I love the pink onions they serve on the side at El Burro. Simply pickled in red wine vinegar to take the edge off the sharp flavour of the onion.

crispy golden fish with spicy crunchy slaw

What you need to make this: (this will be enough for 4 – 6 nicely stuffed tacos)

  • 450 – 500gms firm white fish fillets cut into strips / or chunks ( I used 2 fillets of angelfish)
  • 1 1/2 cups flour (and 1/4 cup for dusting)
  • 300ml beer
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika to add to the dusting flour (optional)
  • 1 red onion finely sliced and soaked in red wine vinegar for about 4 hours or longer in the fridge
  • soft flour taco’s or tortillas / wraps
  • oil for frying
  • lime or lemon wedges
  • fresh coriander leaves
For the spicy slaw:
  • grated carrot (quantity as per requirement)
  • finely sliced cabbage to a 50:50 ratio to the carrot
  • a good quality mayonnaise to coat the carrot and cabbage
  • hot sauce of your choice to season the slaw.  I used a Mexican chipotle hot sauce, but green tabasco or any other chilli sauce will work. I also love the Orinoco Venezuelan sauce (green). You could also just add chopped pickled jalapeno chillies into the slaw.
  • make the slaw by tossing the shredded cabbage and grated carrot in a  bowl with the mayonnaise and hot sauce
How to make these:
  • heat enough oil in a deep pot to fry the fish pieces (about half full)
  • toss the fish pieces in a bowl with the flour,smoked paprika, salt and pepper to lightly coat
  • in another bowl mix the flour and baking powder and then add the beer and whisk lightly to a thick runny consistency
  • when the oil is hot enough, dip each piece of fish into the batter and gently drop into the oil
  • turn the pieces over when they are golden brown and drain on kitchen paper
  • repeat until all the fish is cooked
  • heat the tacos / tortilla’s by either microwaving for 10 seconds or heating on a dry hot pan
  • assemble the tacos adding the slaw, a few fish pieces and coriander
  • season with salt and a spritz with lime juice
made with beer and perfect with beer


  1. Those tacos look divine. Definetely a must try

  2. YUM! And I dont even like fish that much, but this sounds divine! Mexican food 🙂

  3. Thanks Lori, you would love this, crispy and spicy 🙂

  4. This speaks to my seafood addiction in a BIG way – and I love that it incorporates yummy Mexican styles and flavours. Beautiful, Sam!

  5. These look even more amazing on my pc screen. The slaw sounds great too and I love you for not putting condensed milk in it

  6. Where did you get the Chipotle sauce from?

  7. Hi Tamsyn, I bought this very fabulous Cholula hot sauce (imported from Mexico) from Giovanni’s

  8. Eeew Hila condensed milk in coleslaw! *the horror* (Ps I am not a fan of condensed milk at all, cloyingly sweet and was trans fats in it.

  9. Hi Sam, love how all your food just pops off the blue table. Lovely pics. I’ve made a mental note of the G&T jelly…. summer’s coming…

    cheers, B

  10. Thanks Bianca, I do love shooting on blue, it does amazing things to food.
    The Gin and tonic jelly is a winner. I want to make all sorts of other boozy Jellies too.

    Sam x

  11. Hi Sam,

    Where on earth can I find Cholula Sauce?? It’s my absolute fave but haven’t managed to find it anywhere!

    Please help!

  12. Hi Carla, I got mine at Giovanni’s in Greenpoint. They stocked the normal plus Chipotle and I am totally addicted. They are currently out of stock but I keep nagging them to get it in. Speak to Nicholas or Giovanni and ask them to call you when they get it in. It is so delicious splashed into a slaw. Cant eat a coleslaw now without it.

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