Pic of Onion rings in beer batter and tartare sauce

Onion rings in beer batter and tartare sauce

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Vegetarian mains

Onion rings in beer batter and tartare sauce

Side Serves 4 40 min
Onion rings are a fun way to improve on your fish and chips or a lovely crisp snack on their own. Any kind of beer can be used with this recipe, or even just fizzy water – it's the sparkle that gives you a nice, light batter. The tartare is also great with the usual seafood, steak or chips, or as a dipping sauce for veg.

Cook's notes

Try these with mushy peas as a vegetarian alternative to battered fish, chips optional! Or serve as an appetizer, with sweet chilli sauce instead of tartare if you prefer.


  • 6 tbsp mayonnaise
  • leaves from a few sprigs of fresh tarragon, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1 ½ tbsp capers, finely chopped
  • 1 ½ tbsp gherkins, finely chopped
  • juice of ½ lemon or few tsp white wine vinegar
  • 5 tbsp plain flour for batter
  • 3 tbsp cornflour (or use another 3 tbsp plain flour) for batter
  • 1 ½ tbsp baking powder
  • 150ml lager, beer or sparkling water
  • 3 medium onions, sliced into neat rings about ⅓-½cm wide
  • 4 tbsp seasoned plain flour
  • oil for deep frying, e.g. vegetable
  • salt and pepper


Prep time: 20 min
Cooking time: 20 min
  • Step 1

    First make the tartare sauce by combining mayonnaise with herbs, capers and gherkins. Taste and add lemon or vinegar to make a sharp sauce and season with salt and pepper.
  • Step 2

    Make the batter by combining the flour, the cornflour and baking powder in a bowl. Mix in the beer or other liquid to make a thick cream.
  • Step 3

    Heat the oil in a deep fryer (best) or heavy saucepan filled no more than half way with oil, until hot enough to sizzle a small piece of bread. If using a pan, remove it from the heat from time to time during cooking to keep the oil from getting too hot, being extremely careful not to burn yourself.
  • Step 4

    Line a plate with absorbent paper for the cooked rings and use tongs or a slotted spoon.
  • Step 5

    Toss the onion rings in the seasoned flour, making sure all the pieces are well coated. Then turn the rings in the batter, again making sure they are well coated. Working in batches, carefully drop the rings one by one into the hot oil. Don't crowd the pan or the rings will stick together. They will sizzle and puff slightly.
  • Step 6

    Cook until golden brown- a couple of minutes- then fish out of the oil and start the next batch. Serve quickly with the tartare sauce alongside.

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