Runner Bean Fritters

If you grow runner beans, you’ll know how you long for the first ones to ripen, a few at a time, but very soon you’re completely over-run and pressing bundles of them wrapped in newspaper on all your friends and neighbours: which is probably why they are called runners, come to think of it, they just run away with themselves!

These simple fritters are just so delicious: ideal for a glut situation: eat them on their own for breakfast, lunch or tea or any time at all or as an accompaniment to almost anything – they even work beautifully with a curry, a kind of runner bean bhaji but a bit less in the way of spice!

Immediacy is Key

Use the batter immediately for best results or the baking powder will become inactive and the fritters will lose their lovely puffiness.

Similarly, for maximum deliciousness; serve them immediately, straight from the pan onto the plate.

Makes 12-14 fritters

  • 110g plain flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 large egg
  • 150ml milk
  • 225g runner beans, topped and tailed, side strings removed, sliced and steamed until tender
  • ½ small onion, finely chopped
  • Black and white pepper and salt to taste
  • Small pinch of chilli flakes (optional)
  • Sufficient oil to cover the frying pan to a depth of ½ cm or a little less

Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl.

Make a central well and crack in the egg.

Add the milk slowly whilst incorporating the flour with a dinner fork: change to a whisk once the mixture becomes looser.

Once all the milk added and the batter is smooth, chop the beans more finely and stir in with onions. Season to taste.

Heat the oil in pan over a moderate heat and add a tablespoon of batter for each fritter.

Fry one or two fritters at a time for about a minute on each side or until golden.

Drain on kitchen paper and eat immediately.


Did you know, runner bean flowers are edible. Use them in salads or to garnish your fritters. If you have a glut you won’t mind sacrificing just a few.