Thursday 11 April 2013

Gluten Free Crispy Batter - Finally!

crispy gluten free batter
Chicken In Crispy Gluten Free Batter
The search for a versatile crispy gluten free batter has been a constant since the birth of Free From G in 2010. I had experimented so many times over those years that I came close to thinking it was impossible to get a great gluten free crispy batter. I got good batters but never great, never something I was happy enough to share and if you know anything about this blog it's that I never post recipes that I'm not proud of at the time. Sure I sometimes better my original recipes but they're always good enough to post to begin with.

This was just another of those experiments, one that I didn't hold high hopes for hence why there's no great photos. When I mixed the batter to begin with I knew I had something. When the batter hit the hot oil I knew that finally I had accomplished something that has been a constant niggle for the past few years. Proper crispy gluten free batter that could easily be used on a variety of foods.

crispy gluten free batter
So Ordinary Looking
That right there is it. It's the batter mix that looks just the same as all the others but the one that was actually able to deliver the desired end result.

gluten free sweet and sour chicken
Sweet And Sour Chicken
I'm still playing around with the sauce recipe for Sweet and Sour Chicken because I had it, it was perfect, but I got so excited by the sight of the crispy puffed up batter that I did something incredibly stupid - though I hope understandable as I had finished my quest - I put corn starch into the sauce to thicken it without adding liquid. I rectified my mistake but it meant that the ingredients quantities were off so I have to do it again for a recipe post. It's a bit good.

So how did I make this crispy gluten free batter?

gluten free self raising flour
I don't even know why I bought this last weekend, I had no intention of making cakes but I just felt like it was something I should experiment with, more for pastry really, I don't think using if for batter occurred to me until I started making the stuff.

The plan was to make Sweet and Sour Chicken and what I initially intended to do was use masa for the batter. I've done this before with Fish and Chips and Fish Fingers and it works a treat but it's time consuming and the masa doesn't work with smaller things such as Onion Rings, it wouldn't have worked well with the chicken either, would have been too doughy in comparison to the amount of poultry.

I needed a rethink.

That came in the form of:

1/2 Cup Doves Farm Self Raising Flour
1/2 Cup of Chilled Water
Pinch of Sea Salt

And that's it. No weighing out random flours, no mixing them together, just a shop bought self raising flour mix that worked perfectly.

I mixed the batter together with a fork and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes before I needed it. Then I put the marinated chicken pieces into the batter and covered using the fork.

A Crisp N Dry block was melted on high and once hot enough I dropped each battered piece of chicken into the oil and watched them immediately puff up before my very eyes. 4 Minutes later and the first batch was done.

I couldn't contain my excitement and I'm still a bit shocked as to how easy it all was. I had made light but crispy gluten free batter that was effortless and could be used on all manner of things. Hello to those onions rings I'm yet to make with it!

If you can't get hold of Doves Farm Self Raising GF Flour the mix consists of these ingredients:

Rice, Potato, Tapioca, Maize, Buckwheat, mono calcium phosphate, sodium bicarbonate and xanthan gum.

I of course want to fry everything in this batter now but I'm being good. There's plenty more versions of this to come but as a basic crispy gluten free batter this is the place to start. There's plenty of flavours that I want to add in and hopefully I'll be documenting them soon.

Sometimes the most simple of things are surprisingly the best.

UPDATE: Here's some recipes where this batter has been used:

Sweet and Sour Chicken
Fish and Chips
Red Pork In Crispy Batter


  1. Thanks :) but I'm already on there!

  2. Thks for great recipe. I used orgran gluten free self raising flour. First time ive successfully made CRISPY batter. I mafe banana fritters

  3. Hey Lee

    Not sure if this will help you but as a fryer and menu planner is Fish restaurant, adding a little malt vinegar to your mix will help make it extra crisp and colour a lovely golden, its a trick we use in traditional Chippys and our restaurants

  4. Hi,

    I've always understood malt vinegar to be a nono on a gluten free due to it coming from barley but I'll look into it more.

    Thanks :)

  5. definatley NOOOOOO mault vinegar


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