Cali-Baja Fish Tacos


Cali-Baja Fish Tacos

Cali-Baja Fish Tacos

Tacos de Pescado Cali-Baja

Recipe Yield

6 Servings

Cooking time

40 minutes

Rate this recipe

4.72 from 7 votes


  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour plus extra flour for dusting the fish
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt or sea salt or to taste, plus more to season the fish
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 cup Mexican beer preferably a light beer (but anything short of a very dark bitter beer will work)
  • Safflower or canola oil for frying
  • 1 pound mild firm white fish such as cod, haddock, or halibut, cut into 1x4-inch strips
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

To Prepare

  • In the bowl of a standing mixer, set with the paddle attachment, beat the egg whites at medium speed until stiff, but not dry, peaks form. Remove the bowl from the mixer.
  • In another bowl, combine the all-purpose flour with the salt and cumin and whisk in the Mexican beer. In 4 additions, gently fold the flour mixture into the egg whites, taking care not to deflate the egg whites.
  • Pour the oil into a heavy, wide skillet or casserole to a depth of ¼” and heat over medium heat for at least 5 minutes. Test the heat by dipping a wooden spoon or the tip of a piece of fish into the oil: it should bubble happily around whatever you introduce into it. Set a cooling rack on a baking sheet and cover the rack with paper towels. If you don’t have a cooling rack, just cover the baking sheet with paper towels.
  • While the oil is heating, you can season and flour the fish strips. Season them lightly with salt and pepper. Place flour on a plate, and gently press each fish strip into the flour, flip over and flour the other side. Tap off excess flour and place on the rack.
  • When the oil is hot, one by one, dip the floured fish strips into the batter and immediately, but gently, place into the hot oil. Add as many as you can without crowding the pan. Fry until crisp and lightly golden brown, which should take 2 to 3 minutes; then flip and fry on the other side, for another 2 to 3 minutes or until crisp and lightly golden.
  • Remove with tongs - the type with the heat-proof coating on the ends are best, if you want to avoid tearing the batter - or a slotted spoon and place on the paper towel-covered rack. Cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Serve on a flour tortilla with salsa macha and creamy slaw. Optional, pickled red onion and a jalapeño marinated in fresh squeezed lime juice and salt to taste.


96comments inCali-Baja Fish Tacos

  1. Mastaneh O

    Oct 04

    The batter you made for fish is fantastic , what can I use to substitute for beer , can I use club soda ?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 05

      Absolutely, go for it 🙂

  2. Juan C.

    Aug 07

    I love that recipe 👍

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 15

      So happy to hear, yay Juan 🙂

  3. Aracely Carcamo

    Aug 03

    Hola Paty se acerca Septiembre, me encantaria la receta original de los Chiles en Nogada! Los preparas tú?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 15

      Si! Que emocion, de mis temporadas favoritas porque me encantan los Chiles en Nogada, aqui te pongo el enlace a mi receta Aracely, ojala que los disfrutes. Un abrazo 🙂

  4. Margo A Gray

    Aug 01

    Definitely will cook this fish taco

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 14

      Awesome Margo, enjoy!

  5. Dawn Marie Klauke

    Jul 31

    Too good

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 14

      Happy you like it Dawn!

  6. Linda

    Jul 30

    Love fish tacos, thank you for sharing so much. Very happy your family is going hiking, have a ball.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 11

      Gracias Linda!

  7. Lynn from Kansas

    Jul 30

    My mouth is watering!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 11


  8. Linda Patch

    Jul 30

    Thanks, Patti. I was going to make fish tacos tonight so I’m gonna try this recipe. I’m sure it will be delicious. Good timing. Safe travels!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 11

      I hope you enjoyed the tacos Linda 😉

  9. Merrill

    Jul 30

    HI Pati,
    In the short description you suggest serving on corn tortillas, but the recipe says flour tortillas. I guess either type will work, but which would be better?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 11

      You are absolutely right Merrill, sorry for the confusion. Most of the times I am partial to corn tortillas, but these tacos are originally served on flour. Enjoy!

  10. Carol

    Jul 30

    Quick question regarding the matcha salsa, which we love…we’ve had it at our now-closed favorite restaurant in Seattle, but it was smooth, whereas yours looks chunky. Is there any reason not to blend it to a smooth consistency? Or are there other similar matcha recipes that produce a smoother consistency? Thanks and looking forward to the new season.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 11

      Hey Carol, you can blend it if you prefer, it is just that I love the crunchy version of it. Enjoy!

  11. Bruce Schomisch

    Jul 20

    They looked SOoo Good

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 21

      They are yummy good Bruce 🙂

  12. Gary & Stephanie

    Apr 17

    Just made the Cali-Baja taco’s with all the toppings. WOW, thank you Pati for introducing us to all these authentic flavors! We enjoy your show and all your recipes!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 25

      Thanks so much guys, so happy you enjoy the tacos and that you are tuning in 🙂

  13. Alejandra

    Mar 30

    I added a tiny bit of mustard to the green slaw and it gave it that kick 🙂

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 04

      Great idea Alejandra, thanks for sharing 😉

  14. Debra Garland

    Mar 06

    Nice! The Fish Taco recipe is wonderful.
    Love the egg whites idea, and all the details in this dish.
    Thank you so much!!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Mar 07

      Thanks to you for the feedback Debra, so glad you liked these tacos 😉


    Feb 20

    Love your recipes.I have a question about the salsa you serve with tthe baha calil fish tacos,do I really need to use one and 1half cups of oil?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Feb 20

      Hi Catherine! So glad you like these tacos. About the Salsa Macha, if you consider that this recipe yields 3 cups of salsa and that it calls for nuts and dried chiles, then 1 1/2 cups of olive oil is really not that much. Hope you give it a chance, enjoy!

  16. Aimee

    Jan 27

    I was wondering where you get your tiny chime grinder? For like the small chiles like the Pequin and others?
    Thank you!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jan 31

      Hey Aimee, I got mine in a street market in Mexico, but they sell them online as well; look it up as “chiltepin grinder” 🙂

  17. Mrs. Gonzalez

    Jan 03

    Pati, these are hands down the best fish tacos I have tried both in SoCal and Mexico-los mejores de los mejores! I’m a little lazy to do things like whip egg whites, but it absolutely makes a difference. The Salsa Macha is my new favorite on ANYTHING, and the pickled onions were already a secret weapon since you published the Pollo Pibil recipe some years ago. El unico cambio? Tienen que ser con unas buenas tortillas de maiz (my personal preference).
    I have three boys similar to yours in ages, and your tv show is one of the few that we sometimes watch together, both for the delicious food and the rich stories and heritage behind it. Gracias por hacer un programa tan lleno de orgullo y amor por Mexico, y por ser una persona digna de representar a su pais y ser una liga entre los ciudadanos de los dos lados. Te mando un abrazo y muchas porras para seguir adelante!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jan 06

      Te agradezco muchisimo las porras y tus lindas palabras, que amable! Me encanta saber que les gustaron estos tacos, les mando abrazos a todos 😉

  18. Laura Waters

    Dec 10

    I love you pati !!! I’m a big fan!! I’ve been watching you for a long time !!! I saw you when you came to San Antonio,,,, Elian Hotel & Spa
    You even signed my cookbook! 😍 I have some pictures too!! 💙💙
    I will be cooking this recipe this weekend!!! 🐟 I love ingredients you can drink! 😂🍺
    Big Love hugs from SAN ANTONIO!!!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Dec 11

      Thanks so much for the sweet words Laura, looking forward to visiting San Antonio soon. Un abrazo!

  19. Edith Sandoval

    Dec 05

    Hi Patti,
    Just made the fish tacos with all the garnishes you recommended. WOW, what an amazing dish. My man and I were overwhelmed with the explosion of flavors! Thank you.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Dec 06

      Yay Edith! So glad you guys enjoyed these tacos 🙂

  20. Virginia Lopez

    Oct 13

    Hola Patti….going for it for dinner tonight. I just don’t have the salsa matcha. I do; however, have my own canned 💃 salsa. We make our own flour tortillas (gonna use corn though)…..😜 crazy thing I’ve never had a fish 🌮. The hubby asked me to make some so naturally I am leaning towards your recipe.. Wish me luck! Hope all is well with you. Stay safe.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 22

      Hola Virginia, how did the tacos come out?

  21. Don & Carolyn McPherson

    Sep 21

    Hi Pati

    My wife Carolyn and i love you and your show. Cannot wait to try try your beer batter the next time with have fish.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 24

      Hi Don and Carolyn, thanks for tuning in guys! Hope you will do as well for the big premiere of the New Season from Sonora this October 3, enjoy!

  22. Daniel

    Sep 13

    Hi Pati! Thank you for teaching us about the different cuisines of México and inspiring us all to love Mexican cuisine as much as you do! Even though Mexican ingredients are hard to find here in Australia, tracking them down is worth it because the end result is always great.

    I was just curious as to why you have opted for flour tortillas for the recipe? Is this the traditional tortilla used in Ensenada fish tacos? Is it because they prefer flour tortilla in the North? Or is it American influence since Baja borders California? Anyhow, I’m sure it’s delicious with both corn or flour 😊

    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 17

      Hola Daniel and greetings to Australia! About the flour tortillas, I think it is a bit of everything you say, but definitely flour is more popular than corn in the North of Mexico. Keep cooking and having fun 😉


    Sep 03


    1. Pati Jinich

      Sep 05

      Awesome Sue, how did they come out! Hope you enjoyed them 😉

  24. Marla from Toronto, Canada

    Aug 12

    Enjoy your show. Love your recipes. Easy and simple to make using fresh ingredients. Always so tasty.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 12

      Thank you so much Marla! New season premiering the first weekend of October, enjoy 😉

  25. Mary González

    Jul 21

    Dear Pati,
    On this episode, you spoke to a woman who makes the fish tacos and sells them from her cart. I think you said she includes grated garlic in her batter. Did I understand that correctly? I love your batter recipe, but would love a little more info about it with garlic. Thank you!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 26

      Yes Mary, I spoke to Martha from Lily’s Tacos, she adds garlic and onion to her batter and also a bit of mustard, those are her secrets. Enjoy!

  26. Lydia Juaréz

    Jul 04

    Señora bella, I love your recipes and they are easy to follow, the fish taco batter is excellent. My family loves everything I cook from your authentically delicious selections. One question, the beautiful braising is the larger size I’m looking for. Is it Le Creuset? What size? Thank you 😊

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 05

      Thanks for the kind words Lydia! Yes, it is a Le Creuset 5.5 qt, I love it!

  27. Diana V.

    Jun 14

    The best fish tacos. The beer makes the batter like pancake batter, thus making the fish crust fluffy and crispy good. My go to for veggies and shrimp, too. Gracias, Marcela.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jun 18

      Gracias a ti! Glad to hear you enjoyed this recipe 😉

  28. Jean Dreher

    May 10

    Watched you making this recipe on your show. My husband and I can’t wait to make this! Looks amazing!
    Happy Mother’s Day Pati

    1. Pati Jinich

      May 11

      Thank you Jean! Hope you had a great day as well 😉

  29. Bob Naegele

    Feb 03

    This is just the best batter for fish tacos…
    Like others have said, try it with shrimp, too.
    Salmon is also delicious.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Feb 04

      Glad you like them Bob!

  30. Ian Allen

    Nov 06

    Just saw the episode that has this recipe but where can I find the recipe for the tortilla?
    We’re going to try this recipe asap.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Nov 11

  31. Trudy Richardson

    Oct 12

    Thank you so much!
    Love this

    1. Pati Jinich

      Oct 12


  32. Perlita

    Aug 11

    En donde se ubica la señora Guerrerense? Sobre que calles se pone?

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 15

  33. Kate Ward

    Jul 18

    I don’t like to use the suggested oils …,what other oil could I use to deep fry the fish – Thank you for any direction you can give me

    1. Pati Jinich

      Aug 09

      You can use peanut oil instead of safflower or canola oil, Kate.

  34. LauraN

    Jul 17

    These were simply amazing! Ive made them with shrimp also and they were just as good. I went to a mexican restaurant and ordered these. How disappointing! Just fish and tartar sauce…. they should use your recipe!!!!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 18

      I’m so glad you loved the recipe, Laura!

  35. Vinnie

    Jul 06

    Love your recipes!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jul 08

      Thank you, Vinnie!

  36. S.L.M.

    Jun 16

    Just made these, they’re amazing! Haddock worked perfectly.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jun 18

      So happy to hear this, S.L.M.

  37. aanjali Edwards

    Jun 05

    I loved it!Me and my brother wanted to make it so badly but my mom said NO.You are the best mexican cook i ever saw on the TV before!It is so hard to describe you !

    1. Pati Jinich

      Jun 06

      Thank you, Aanjali!

  38. Anne

    Apr 08

    Best find from this great recipe was the salsa macha. WOW! What flavor. I’m going to keep a pot of this in the fridge for quick chicken, sweet potato and sweet pepper bowls. This satisfied all our umami tastebuds. Thanks Pati!!

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 13

      Super! I sometimes eat it right out of the jar….

  39. Tcooks

    Apr 03

    It’s funny that I accidentally made these with corn tortillas (hey, my best excuse is that I was recently watching your video about which kind of tortillas are most often used…) and only after serving them I noticed it calls for flour after all!
    Never mind my mistake, they were positively good with flavors working in very delicious complement together.

    1. Pati Jinich

      Apr 13

      Oh they are so good either way!

  40. Anne

    Feb 24

    Luv fish tacos, do you have a recipe for creamy slaw? What to make them right. Thank you 😀

  41. mishel

    Jan 29

    i like your style and of cooking also, you make cooking look so easy . also like when your boys come eat at table, and you showing them how to cook, make me so hungry. i like your show and everything you cook. is yummy. like your accent too/ and especially the way you say the P word- not going to spell it out. but i love it. admirable

    1. Pati

      Feb 02

      Thank you for tuning in, Mishel.

  42. Jacquie

    Jan 24

    Best fish tacos ever!!! After moving from So Cal to the East Coast my husband and I were craving some authentic food inspired from south of the boarder. As we were randomly flipping through channels we saw you cooking these and and couldn’t stop watching. Thank God for you and your cooking show and your recipies!!! This fish taco recipe was not only simple but also delicious (we used fresh wild caught cod and light corona). Even my 2 year old loved it! Thank you thank you, I’m excited to make more of your meals!

    1. Pati

      Jan 25

      I’m so glad you found me and the taco recipe, Jacquie!

  43. Sara

    Jan 12

    My Mom and I love your shows and the recipes! Every Saturday we watch then Sunday we try. Some weeks are more successful than others, but we always have fun. It’s a great way to spend time with my Mom!

    1. Pati

      Jan 14

      Oh please say hi to your mom for me, Sara!

  44. Bob in Nampa, Idaho

    Jan 12

    the best fish taco batter EVER… I used fresh salmon filet, cut as directed, and it was excellent!
    We just moved to Idaho from San Diego and miss the great fish (and shrimp) tacos from some of the local spots.
    The slaw mix was perfect, too. Actually had people talking about how good the slaw was.
    Only change I made was for the salsa macha. I wasn’t ambitious enough to make it, so I used one of my favorite “off the rack” salsas; Herdez Salsa Ranchera. Wanted shrimp tacos, too, and I had enough batter left over to do some shrimp, too. Taco Tuesday was a hit.

    1. Pati

      Jan 14

      Your Taco Tuesday sounds super yum, Bob!

  45. Will

    Nov 22

    Wow you are “maravillosa” love the recipes but more than anything the way you present them that makes my mouth watery. Love the accent and the and the sprinkle of Spanish words…delightful

    1. Pati

      Nov 24

      Aww thanks, Will!

  46. Jennifer in Colorado

    Nov 22

    I live in Colorado and we do not have a good selection of fresh fish at our market. Can I use frozen filets or would you recommend only fresh fish?

    1. Pati

      Nov 28

      You can also use frozen filets, Jennifer. Enjoy!

  47. Tom & Linda -San Diego...

    Oct 21

    We record all the shows. Wife knows I’m in love with Pati and doesn’t care because everyone’s in love with Pati and her cooking…
    There isn’t ‘1’ recipe that we have tried that we weren’t blown away by. Looking forward to trying so many more.

    Thank you… and don’t stop sharing..

    1. Pati

      Oct 22

      Aww thank you so much Tom and Linda!

  48. Michael

    Oct 13

    I love your wonderful dishes. Living in Texas all my life and I have never found such a good recipe for fish tacos. I’m going to try, one time I made a fish fry using beer batter that was my wife’s recipe. It was quick and easy but it was the best batter! Your version looks lighter and puffy. Now I’m inspired to make my own flour tortillas. I want to try them with butter and salt too!

    1. Pati

      Oct 17

      Oh I’m so glad you were inspired, Michael! Enjoy the tacos and tortillas!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.