Fried anchovies - small, crispy salty bites, make a perfect beer snack.
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5 from 4 votes

Fried Anchovies

Fried anchovies (or other small fish such as smelt) simply seasoned with lemon juice and salt make the perfect snack to enjoy with a cold lager. 
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Appetizer, Beer Garden Food, Entree
Cuisine: American, Bulgarian, Italian, Spanish
Servings: 4
Author: CraftBeering


  • 2 lbs small anchovies (or smelt)
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • 2-3 quarts vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 lemons for garnish


  • Clean, rinse and dry the fish. 
  • Heat the oil in a heavy bottomed pan to 350 F. Prepare a paper lined plate or sheet pan to place the fried fish. 
  • Dredge each fish in flour, first on one side then the other. Shake off excess flour and gently drop into frying oil.
  • Fry no more than a dozen fish at a time, depending on the size of your pan. Fry for about 4 minutes or until the fish begin to turn a deep golden color. 
  • Remove the fish with a spider and place onto the paper lined plate. Season with salt. Proceed with the next batch.
    Serve in paper cones or in small paper trays with lemon wedges and (optional) fries and dips. Have cold beer at the ready. 


Consult the tips for cleaning small fish in the post accompanying this recipe card.