Keto Old Bay Fish Fry

Dive into a keto-friendly twist on a beloved classic with my Keto Old Bay Fish Fry recipe! Crafted with a flavorful almond flour batter and seasoned with classic Old Bay seasoning, these crispy fish fillets offer a wholesome alternative to traditional beer batter! Join me in the kitchen and let’s dive into this guilt-free indulgence together!

Keto friendly old bay batter fried fish served in a red basket with a wedge of lemon.

Why I Love This Recipe

I’m bursting with pride over my latest creation, the Keto Old Bay Fish Fry, which takes inspiration from the beloved beer-battered featured in my Keto Fried Calamari recipe. Crafted with care and using keto-friendly ingredients, this dish boasts a golden-brown perfection that rivals traditional fish fries, while still adhering to your dietary goals!

Its savory taste, paired with my handcrafted tartar sauce, offers a delightful dining experience suitable for anyone seeking a simple yet scrumptious main course. Join me in savoring the flavors of this special recipe that’s sure to become a favorite among keto enthusiasts—it’s time to elevate your culinary journey with every crispy, delicious bite!

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • Cod – patted dry with a paper towel. Can also use other firm white flesh fish such as halibut, white fish, mahi-mahi, ono, or pollock,
  • Almond Flour – fine ground Almond Flour for a keto, gluten-free and low-carb recipe.
  • Old Bay Seasoning  – premixed Old Bay Seasoning found in the seafood section in grocery stores.
  • Grated Parmesan – use grated parmesan or a blend found in the self-stable section of supermarkets.
  • Garlic Powder  – ground garlic powder.
  • Red Pepper – ground.
  • Egg – beaten.
  • Sparkling Water – non-flavored carbonated water. Can also use low-carb beer if preferred.

Fish Substitutions

If you don’t have cod available, you can substitute it with other firm white flesh fish like Halibut, White fish, Rockfish, Mahi-mahi, or Pollock. These alternatives will maintain the texture and flavor profile needed for the dish while offering flexibility based on availability.

Keto friendly old bay batter fried fish being dipped into homemade tarter sauce.

Directions

Step 1 Start by patting dry the cod fillets thoroughly with a paper towel to ensure the batter adheres properly.

Fish fillets being prepared.

Step 2 Next, prepare the batter by combining almond flour, grated Parmesan cheese, bay seasoning, garlic powder, red pepper, egg, and sparkling water with a hand mixer.

Old bay batter in a mixing bowl.

💡 Batter Pro Tip

After preparing the batter, Work Swiftly because the longer it sits, the more liquid the almond flour will absorb, resulting in a thicker consistency.

Step 3 Dip the cod fillets into the batter and deep fry them in hot oil for 1-3 minutes per side until they turn golden brown.

Fish fillets being coated with batter.

💡 Deep Frying Pro Tip

Make sure the oil reaches 375°F before frying, and Avoid Overcrowding the pan to maintain the oil temperature consistently.

Step 4 After frying, place the fillets on a drying rack and serve them with the optional tartar sauce.

Fried fish on a drying rack.

Pairing Recommendations

Pair with my Crispy Baked Garlic Kale Chips for a healthy, keto-friendly alternative to French fries.

Keto friendly old bay batter fried fish served in a red basket showing cross sectional cut of deep fried cod.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know when the oil is hot enough for frying?

The best method is to use a thermometer. However, if you don't have one, you can try the batter test. Simply add a small amount of batter to the oil, and if it sizzles and starts cooking immediately, the oil is likely hot enough for frying.

Can I make the batter ahead of time?

It's best to prepare it fresh. Over time, the batter may start to thicken, affecting its consistency and potentially the final result of your dish.

Can I bake the fish instead of frying it?

Baking is not recommended for this recipe. Since the batter is liquid and needs to bind immediately, frying is essential to achieve the desired texture and consistency.

How do I prevent the batter from becoming too thick while frying multiple batches?

To prevent the batter from becoming too thick while frying multiple batches, it's advisable to work in smaller batches. I recommend frying no more than two batches at a time using the same batter. If you need to make additional batches, it's best to prepare another set of batter.

Storage Tips

To store leftovers, place the fried fish in an airtight container and refrigerate for 2-3 days. When reheating, it’s optimal to refry, air fry, or use an oven to maintain its texture.

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Watch How To Make It

Keto friendly old bay batter fried fish served in a red basket with a wedge of lemon.

Keto Old Bay Fish Fry

Discover the mouthwatering flavors of Keto Old Bay Fish Fry – a delectable twist on a classic favorite! Crafted with care and keto-friendly ingredients, this crispy delight is perfect for a satisfying main course. Join us on a journey to crispy perfection!
4.45 from 34 votes
Course: Appetizer, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: keto fried fish
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 3 minutes
Total Time: 8 minutes
Servings: 2
Print Recipe
Calories: 359kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Cod Fillets or any neutral firm white meat fish
  • 1/2 Cup Almond Flour
  • 2 tbsp Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • 2 tsp Bay Seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Red Pepper Powder
  • 2 Whole Egg
  • 1/3 Cup Sparkling Water

Optional Sauce

  • 2 tbsp Mayo
  • 2 tbsp Dill Pickles minced, about 1/2 spear
  • 1/4 tsp Onion Salt
  • 1/8 tsp Lemon Juice

Instructions

  • Gather all the ingredients.
    Ingredients to make keto old bay fish fry on the countertop.
  • If making the optional sauce, finely mince dill pickle spears and place into a small mixing bowl along with mayo, onion salt and lemon juice. Otherwise, skip to step 4).
    Tarter sauce in a mixing bowl.
  • Prepare fillets by washing with cold fresh water and then drying fillets very well with a paper towel. Cut fillets into about 3 x 2 inch cuts and set aside.
    Tarter sauce in a mixing bowl.
  • Prepare batter by combining almond flour, grated Parmesan cheese, Old Bay seasoning, garlic powder, red pepper powder, egg and sparkling water. Use a hand/stand mixer to mix (you can hand whisk, but batter won't be as airy).
    Tarter sauce in a mixing bowl.
  • Take a piece of fillet and dip into batter mix and set aside.
    Fish fillets being coated with batter.
  • Pour enough cooking oil to cover half the fillets into a vessel of choice and heat oil up to 375F. Once up to heat, reduce heat to medium, carefully add coated fillets and cook for 1-3 minutes until golden brown. Flip and cook the other side for 1-3 minute until golden brown. Once done, transfer fillets to drying rack and leave for about 1 minute (if you don't have a drying rack, you can just place them on a plate with paper towels).
    Battered coated fish fillet being deep fried.
  • Once all excess oil has dripped off, transfer the fried fish fillets to a serving plate and serve with optional sauce.
    Fried fish on a drying rack.

Nutrition

Calories: 359kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 45g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 106mg | Sodium: 623mg | Potassium: 985mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 299IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 118mg | Iron: 2mg
*Values Based Per Serving
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16 Comments

  1. I did the recipe exactly, however the batter did not stay on the fish and my pan and oil where Hot!!! ?

    • LowCarbingAsian

      Hi Maggie – sorry to hear that. Was the batter thick when you made it? If not, there is a chance too much carbonated water or too little almond flour was used.

      • Old post, but I second Deb’s comment. Swap the sparkling water for a lo-carb beer for a little more flavor. Also, I can confirm you can sub powdered chicharrones for the almond flour, but it makes the batter MUCH thicker amd requires twice the amount of liquid to get a good consistency.

  2. Best coating ever, I didn’t have sparkling water but I did have an ice cold Mic Ultra that was the perfect substitute! Thanks for sharing my new go to breading,

    • LowCarbingAsian

      Hey Deb! Great to hear you liked the fish batter! Yup, a Mic Ultra will do just fine as well.

  3. I had the same problem with the batter not sticking. I followed the directions because I wasn’t sure with the almond flour how it would turn out, but in normal bartering, you want to go wet-dry-wet. So typically you would coat your fish (wet) in flour (dry) and then dip in the batter. Dipping wet fish (even if it’s patted dry) into wet batter will only result in slide offs unfortunately. Next time I’ll try dipping the fish in either some extra parm or almond flour first.

    The taste of what did stick was great, and I modified the sauce by adding some extra lemon juice and some old bay and garlic powder, and it made a great remoulade type sauce to dip it in.

    • LowCarbingAsian

      Hey Adam – The only thing I can think of is the fish fillets might have not been thoroughly dried or the batter was too watery. You can try to add some flour before the batter, but if the fish fillets are properly dried, the the flour probably won’t stay on the fillet.

      Update – Hey Adam, after getting your comment, we decided to we test this recipe and we found out adding another egg to the batter really helps bind the batter in place once it hits the oil. So if you decide to give this recipe another go, please give that a try!

  4. Sharon Barlow

    Made this for dinner tonight and it was so good. I did add 1 tsp more almond flour and patted the fish really dry, the batter stayed on perfectly. I also added a drop of mustard to the tarter sauce but it is a keeper.

  5. hi, can i ask what type of frying oil you guys use?

    • LowCarbingAsian

      Hi Toby! We use regular ol’ vegetable oil but you can use whatever your preferred frying oil is. Just make sure the oil is up to temp otherwise it will become a soggy mess (personal experience)!

  6. do you think this would work in an air fryer?

  7. Cassandra Robertson

    Make as instructed, used electric mixer and added 2 1/2 tsp corn starch. Used coating for jumbo shrimp and extra dry, flounder filets, they came out crispy and NONE of the batter came off. GREAT FLAVOR & NONE of the guilt! Excellent alternative for keto!

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