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Low-Carb Fish and Chips

4.6 stars, average of 33 ratings

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Do you miss proper British fish and chips on a low-carb diet? Today, I have a solution to your fish and chips cravings! A lot of low-carb fish and chips recipes are made using nut flour based batters which can result in less than exciting breaded fish, dense and not very crispy.

These keto fish and chips on the other hand are awesome! A light, crispy batter with the perfect flakey fish waiting inside (you can use either cod or haddock), and served with the best low-carb fries!

We're using these low-carb fries which are made with parsley roots as opposed to rutabaga (swede), kohlrabi, celeriac or turnip meaning the carbs are much lower, and guys, they taste the best.

If you’ve not tried parsley roots before, here in the UK I get them from Ocado or Natoora. They taste a bit like a parsnip but not as sweet. Once you try them, I guarantee you’ll have them on repeat order in your shopping basket!

Can't find parsley roots? Try rutabaga, turnips or kohlrabi instead. Here's the full Low-Carb Parsley Fries recipe for more step-by-step photos and all the alternatives you can use instead.

Note that these fries won't taste like potatoes but they are by far the best vegetable alternative I've tried.

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Top Tips for the Best Low-Carb Fish and Chips

1. Pre-Cook your Fries

Parsley roots take longer to cook than potatoes so it's important to pre-cook them. Pre-cooking the fries before deep-frying them will ensure that they are cooked through on the inside and then when you fry them, they’re crisp on the outside too. Prolonged deep frying would make them too dry.

To pre-cook, microwave the parsley fries for 4 to 6 minutes before frying. Alternatively, you can boil the parsley fries. To do that, place in a saucepan filled with water. Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of salt and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cook for 7 to 10 minutes. Once cooked, pour through a colander to drain. They should be crisp tender so when you fry them they are cooked inside and crisped up on the outside without getting too dry.

You can find our step-by-step guide on how to make Low-Carb Parsley Fries here.

2. Use Sparkling Water For Fluffy Batter

Using sparkling water as opposed to commonly used cream in most keto recipes makes the batter super light. Traditionally, a fish and chip batter doesn’t use egg I know and if you can't eat eggs you can omit it in this recipe but to be honest, egg-free batter doesn’t stick to the fish as well as the one with an egg. It’s much better if you can use an egg. You could even use low-carb and gluten-free beer instead of just sparkling water.

3. Swap Protein Powder For Flour

Using whey protein to replace standard flour or nut flours results in a nice crisp, light batter! Make sure to use isolate (very low-carb), and not concentrate. I kept the flavouring of the batter really neutral for this recipe but you can always experiment with 1/4 tsp paprika, 1 tsp garlic powder or using low-carb beer instead of sparkling water for beer battered fish!

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Hands-on Overall

Serving size 1 fish fillet + about 85 g/ 3 oz fries

Allergy information for Low-Carb Fish and Chips

✔  Gluten free
✔  Nut free
✔  Nightshade free
✔  Pork free
✔  Avocado free
✔  Coconut free
✔  Shellfish free
✔  Beef free
Pescatarian
Low FODMAP

Nutritional values (per serving, 1 fish fillet + about 85 g/ 3 oz fries)

Net carbs5.5 grams
Protein54.4 grams
Fat40.4 grams
Calories582 kcal
Calories from carbs 4%, protein 36%, fat 60%
Total carbs10 gramsFiber4.5 gramsSugars0.2 gramsSaturated fat4.9 gramsSodium1,388 mg(60% RDA)Magnesium176 mg(44% RDA)Potassium1,084 mg(54% EMR)

Ingredients (makes 3 servings)

Chips:
  • 900 g parsley roots, peeled and cut into fries (2 lbs) - see tips above for alternatives
  • 3/4 tsp sea salt, or to taste
  • enough frying oil for the fries and fish (avocado oil, ghee, goose fat or duck fat work best)
Fish:

Instructions

  1. To make the fries, you'll need about 900 g (2 lbs) parsley roots. Once peeled and trimmed, you'll get about 750 (1.65 lbs) of net weight which is what I used in this recipe. Peel and slice the parsley roots into 1 cm thick fries.
    Note: Can't find parsley roots? Try rutabaga, turnips or kohlrabi instead. Here's the full Low-Carb Parsley Fries recipe for more step-by-step photos and all the alternatives you can use instead. Low-Carb Fish and Chips
  2. Cook in the microwave for 4 to 6 minutes or until al-dente. (The length of time will depend how fresh your parsley roots are and also how thick you cut them so start at about 1 1/2 mins and increase in 30 second increments.) You want them almost cooked but with a good bite left so when added to the hot oil, you’re simply crisping the outside.
  3. Pour about 3 cups of oil in a small but deep sauce pan, or as much as you need to fully cover the fries and later to also fit the fish fillets, one at a time. (Note: I only included a small part of the oil in the nutrition facts as most will be discarded.)
  4. Heat the oil to very hot, about 180 °C/ 355 °F. When hot, add the parsley fries using a slotted spoon and fry for 5 to 10 minutes until golden. Once cooked, using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate or tray lined with paper towel to get rid of any excess oil. When still hot, sprinkle with salt to taste. Low-Carb Fish and Chips
  5. While the fries are cooking, prepare the batter to coat the fish. Combine the whey protein, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Make a well in the centre. Add the egg and gradually add the sparkling water (or use low-carb beer), using a hand balloon whisk stir until well combined, then whisk through the egg.
  6. To fry the fish, dip each piece of fish, one at a time, into the batter to evenly coat. Fry for 6 - 8 minutes (depending on the thickness of your fish) or until crisp and golden on the outside and cooked through on the inside. Use a slotted spoon to remove the fish from the hot oil.
  7. Repeat for the remaining fillets. Transfer to a plate lined with kitchen paper and repeat with remaining fillets. Low-Carb Fish and Chips
  8. Serve with a sprinkling of flaked sea salt, lemon wedges and Mayonnaise or Sugar-Free Ketchup. Low-Carb Fish and Chips
  9. This keto fish & chips meal is best served immediately. If needed, it can be reheated in the oven or microwaved. Low-Carb Fish and Chips

Ingredient nutritional breakdown (per serving, 1 fish fillet + about 85 g/ 3 oz fries)

Net carbsProteinFatCalories
Parsley roots, fresh
4.3 g5.9 g1.5 g29 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Whey protein powder (protein isolate, Jay Robb)
0.8 g19.7 g0 g83 kcal
Baking powder, gluten-free
0.3 g0 g0 g2 kcal
Salt, sea salt
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Water, sparkling
0 g0 g0 g0 kcal
Egg, whole, fresh, raw (free-range or organic eggs)
0.1 g2.1 g1.6 g24 kcal
Fish, cod, Atlantic, raw
0 g26.7 g1 g123 kcal
Avocado oil, extra virgin
0 g0 g36.3 g321 kcal
Total per serving, 1 fish fillet + about 85 g/ 3 oz fries
5.5 g54.4 g40.4 g582 kcal

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Jo Harding
Creator of ModernFoodStories.com

Jo Harding

Food is one of life’s most powerful medicines. I’m a true testament that once you find the right approach for you, you can overcome poor health through the healing power of food.

I believe the secret to radiant health starts and ends with a healthy gut so my recipes are all grain, gluten and refined sugar free. Most are also dairy-free.

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Comments (14)

I cannot eat whey or eggs - any suggestions for a crispy batter without them?

Hi Mary, I'm sure you could use other options but I'd need to test them to give any detailed tips the amounts. I'm thinking about ground pork rinds, lupin flour or a combination of nut and seed flours with a pinch of xanthan gum.

That gives me a direction to go in - thank you!

Can I substitute whey protein powder for something?

You could use egg white protein powder or use a completely different coating a method: (does not require deep frying): Low-Carb Czech Christmas Fried Fish

Was not a fan of the whey batter.  When fried, it tasted a bit "gritty" and was very greasy as it didn't form a tight enough coating to block absorption of the oil.  On the plus side , it was very light and tempura like.  I think it has great potential, but might work better using a 50/50 mix of lupin flour with the whey protein powder.  Will try that next time and let you know how it worked.  

Thank you Deb, that's an interesting suggestion to use lupin flour. I'll try that next time but if you do it first, please let me know how it went. Thank you!

Tried the lupin/ whey mix.  Did 50/50 for the first batch....too much lupin, the batter puffed up far too much for me, even though the crust was nice as crispy.  For those who may actually like a breadier coating, this might be for you.
On attempt #2, did 50 g whey and 25 g lupin (plus needed a bit more liquid...used low carb beer).
This was a BIG winner.....had a nice crispy tempura feel to it but was more cohesive and much less greasy when fried than the whey alone.  This will be my new "go to" batter for seafood and chicken fingers.  Thank you for the inspiration using the whey......a game changer!

Thank you so much, I will need to give this a go! I'll make sure to update the recipe tips too

I just made the fish and it was absolutely delicious.... as all of your recipes! Thank you so much. Now I need to try the parsley roots, I've seen them at Whole Foods 😊

Thank you Sandra, I'm glad you enjoyed!

Could you use an air fryer for either of these?

Yes, you can make the fries in an air fryer! I have instructions on how to do it here: Crispy Low-Carb French Fries
As for the fish I'm not sure as I haven't tried it. I don't think it will work the same way as deep frying and I worry the batter may stick to the air fryer and peel off in parts where it touches it. I'd use a pan with enough oil to fry on both sides.

Thank you!