Beer Battered Fish Tacos & The Chelada

Summer is better effortless and a little messy. Let your hair down, get your toes in the sand, forget the makeup, embrace the post-work cocktail, and let that cilantro jalapeño crema run down your cheek.

Fish Tacos

These California fish tacos are messy (in the best possible way) and their cocktail sidekick, the chelada, is effortless. I’m excited to make them again, like woah.

Elizabeth and I had a little dinner party featuring these bad boys (kinda like the one with these bad boys). The summer evening light flooded the kitchen, and our cocktails in hand, we blasted the Salsa Fever Pandora station (pro tip), and we were ready to whip up what would be the best fish tacos I’ve ever had. You should absolutely throw this dinner party – people will hate you…for how awesome you are.


Let’s start with our totally effortless beer cocktail, shall we? (This one would also do!) Rim a pint glass with coarse salt, add a few cubes of ice, squeeze the juice of one lime in your glass, pour in your favorite light lager (we used Pacifico – just don’t use a flavorless light beer), give it a quick stir, and voila! a wonderfully refreshing and totally easy summer cocktail: The Chelada ladies and gentlemen.

Now here’s the deal with the tacos: there are tons of fun toppings all of which are optional, but highly encouraged – you do you. The only thing you MUST promise me you’ll make is the cilantro jalapeño crema. That’s a nonnegotiable. The crema is what sets these fish tacos apart from all the rest. It’s a crema revolution, get on board.

Beer Battered Fish Tacos

We’re gonna make a beer batter for our tacos first so that it can chill out in the fridge where the flavors will marry. That gives us time to shred the cabbage, dice the tomatoes, scoop the avocado, and crumble the queso fresco. We just dip the small cod filets in the batter, fry ‘em up, warm the tortillas, and we’re all set!

Fish tacos = summer. You should probably make these today.

Here’s what we did:

Beer Battered Fish Tacos

*Serves 6-8

In a medium bowl, whisk together:

  • 1 ½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp. baking powder
  • 1 ½ tsp. coriander
  • 1 ½ tsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • ¼ tsp. cayenne pepper
  • salt & pepper
  • 1 12oz. bottle light lager (like Pacifico)

Let the beer batter chill out in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, we’ll prep the other components.

In a large frying pan, start heating ½ to 1 inch of:

  • vegetable oil

For the Cilantro Jalapeño Crema:

Mix in a blender until smooth:

    • 8 oz. light sour cream
    • 1 ½ c. chopped cilantro
    • 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
    • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1 ½ tsp. salt

Taste and add more salt and lime if needed. Set in the fridge until ready to serve.

Toss together and set aside:

  • 2 c. shredded red cabbage
  • the juice of one lime

Toss together and set aside:

  • 1 ripe avocado, cubed
  • 2 tomatoes, cubed
  • ¼ c. finely diced red onion
  • juice of ½ a lime
  • salt & pepper

Crumble up:

  • 1 c. queso fresco or cotija cheese (or as much as your heart desires!)

Dip into the beer batter, letting the excess drip off:

  • small white fish fillets (cod, halibut, tilapia, etc.), cut into thick strips

Gently place a few pieces of the fish in the hot oil to fry (don’t crowd the pan). About 2-4 minutes per side, until golden brown. Transfer the cooked fish to a paper towel-lined plate and sprinkle with coarse salt. Keep the fish on an oven-proof dish in a 200 degree oven until you’re ready to serve. Repeat until you’ve fried all the fish.

Serve tacos with:

  • warm flour or corn tortillas
  • lime wedges
  • fresh cilantro
  • prepared red cabbage
  • prepared avocado tomato salsa
  • queso fresco
  • your favorite hot sauce


P.S.- find more fun recipes like this one at Fiesta Friday!

SoCal Sunset

French phrase for fun:

L’été en Californie est le meilleur…tout simplement le meilleur.

Summer in California is the best…simply the best.

12 thoughts on “Beer Battered Fish Tacos & The Chelada

  1. Pingback: Fiesta Friday #28 | The Novice Gardener

  2. What a party, and amazing yet simple flavours! I could almost imagine myself in Californian summer, instead of winter in our corner of the world. Thank you for bringing your party to Fiesta Friday – a party within a party!

Penny for your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s