This beer battered onion rings recipe is easy to make from scratch with simple secrets for light and airy batter that’s extra crispy. No beer? No problem! Check out my easy substitution options and get ready to make the best homemade onion rings!
If you’re looking for a no-fail recipe for the best homemade onion rings, you’ve come to the right place. I thoroughly researched each ingredient for this recipe to fully understand what role they all play to make sure these onion rings are light, airy, and crispy, with batter that actually sticks to the onion ring.
Check out all of my simple secrets below. Happy frying, friends!
See recipe card at bottom of post for ingredient amounts and full instructions
- Yellow Onion – You can also use Vidalia onions for a sweeter taste. Choose onions that are nice and firm.
- Cornstarch– See below on what role this plays
- All Purpose Flour
- Baking Powder
- Garlic Powder
- Beer– Pale Ale is great, see below for other suggestions
How to Cut Onion Rings
Peel the Onion and slice the stem off.
Place the onion on its side with the stem side facing out. Cut a small slice on the bottom to create a flat surface to keep the onion in place.
Cut into 1/2 inch slices. A mandoline slicer helps to ensure even slices.
Separate the slices into rings.
What Temperature to Fry Onion Rings
- An oil temperature between 365°-375° is perfect for deep fried onion rings.
- Canola oil or Vegetable oil are the best to use for deep frying.
- PRO TIP: The onions should rise to the top of the oil almost immediately if the oil is at the right temperature. If it’s not hot enough, the onion ring will sink (and likely stick) to the bottom and the batter will fall off.
The Role of Beer in Beer Batter
- The carbonation in beer provides lift while the batter is deep frying in oil, which makes it light and airy.
- It also adds acidity to the batter which limits the amount of gluten that can develop when the beer is combined with the flour. Limiting gluten in the batter prevents it from becoming tough, and makes it crispier
Cooks illustrated outlines this information in more detail.
Best Kinds of Beer for Beer Batter
- The kind of beer that you use can be a matter of personal taste, but you really can’t go wrong with using a pale ale like Sierra Nevada. Here is a guide with 6 additional suggestions for the best beers for beer batter.
- Seltzer/Club Soda water makes a great substitute for beer in beer batter. You can experiment with other carbonated beverages such as root beer and ginger ale.
How to Keep the Batter From Falling Off
- Crucial Tip: The oil has to be hot enough. Otherwise the batter will melt right off of the onion.
- Coating each onion ring in cornstarch is another way to ensure that the batter stays on the onion ring and that you have extra crispy results:
- Cornstarch provides a textured surface around the onion ring which allows it to grip and hold on to the batter so that it doesn’t slide right off.
- If also prevents gluten from developing, which yields crispier results. Additionally, it absorbs moisture, which also makes them extra crispy.
Soaking Onions in Ice Water
- This is optional. Soaking onions in water for 15-20 minutes helps to neutralize the flavors of the onion and lessen the “bite”. It also brings out a sweet flavor and makes them a bit crunchier.
Easy Onion Ring Sauce
- Combine equal parts BBQ Sauce + Ranch Salad Dressing. Taste, and add more of either one per your taste preferences.
- Optional: Heat for a few seconds in microwave prior to serving.
- Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days and can be reheated in a 350° degree oven or air fryer for up to 5 minutes, until heated through.
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Onion Rings Recipe
- 1 jumbo yellow onion, about 1 pound
- 1/3 cup corn starch
- 48 oz. vegetable oil, can also use canola
- 1 ½ cups flour, + 2 TBS as needed
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1 12 oz. can beer, can sub seltzer water
- Optional: Soak onions in ice water for 15 minutes and pat them completely dry before frying. This neutralizes the flavors and brings out a hint of sweetness instead of a harsher bite. It also makes them a bit crunchier.
- Place cooling racks over a baking sheet next to where you’ll be frying.
- Peel the onion and position it so the stem is facing outward (not up or down). Slice onions into ½ inch thick slices and separate the slices into rings. (See post for step by step photos and PRO tips for cutting onion rings.)
- Toss thein cornstarch. This helps the batter stick to the onions. It also absorbs moisture and prevents gluten from developing, which makes them crispier.
- Whisk the 1 ½ cups flour and remaining dry ingredients together until well-combined. Gradually pour in the beer, whisking continuously. Add up to 2 additional tablespoons of flour if needed. The consistency should resemble a thin pancake batter.
- Heat oil to 365-375 degrees. Dip 4-5 onion rings in batter and gently shake off any excess. Carefully lower them, one at a time, into the preheated oil. If the oil is at the right temperature, they should rise to the top almost immediately. If it's not, they'll sink and stick to the bottom and the batter will fall off.
- Fry for about 1 minute + 20 seconds. Flip them over when the first side is golden brown. Cook for another 45 seconds or so, then remove and place on cooling racks. (I find that using a fork is the best way to handle them.)
- Repeat until all onion rings have been fried. Serve with dipping sauce. (Ketchup, Ranch, BBQ Sauce, or a combination sauces!)
- PRO Tip: To keep fried onion rings warm, place the cooling rack with the onion rings in a 200-degree oven.
Easy Onion Ring Sauce:Combine equal parts BBQ Sauce + Ranch Salad Dressing. Taste, and add more of either one per your taste preferences. Optional: Heat for a few seconds in microwave prior to serving.