Nothing compares to the British love for a takeaway. Indian cuisine is one of the most reliable top picks, with local restaurants heralded by critics for serving some of the best Indian food in Europe.
However, evidence suggests that fish and chips might be a firm favourite – despite chicken tikka masala claiming the title as our official national dish. To find out more about the facts behind this uniquely British takeaway rivalry, read on.
Fish and chips takes the top spot
According to a recent study by online bingo site Jackpotjoy, more than 200,000 people ask Google for recommendations on the best fish and chip shops to visit each month. With searches up 172% since March, it’s clear that local chippies are enjoying an overdue post-pandemic renaissance.
How do you eat yours?
Fish and chips is the subject of intense debate, especially concerning how it should be eaten.
So much, in fact, that it’s possible to explore the UK’s North-South divide through different opinions around the dish: you can even take an online chip shop order quiz to be told if you’re from the North or the South.
Brits might recall seeing other items on the counter alongside the freshly fried fish. Mysterious rumours of the deep fried Mars bar circulate through rural towns, but you don’t often hear of anyone choosing something other than cod or haddock.
What do Brits order in the chippy?
Luckily, Jackpotjoy’s study also delivered answers to the nation’s top ten chippy orders:
- Battered cod – 60%
- Battered haddock – 33%
- Battered sausage – 26%
- Sausage – 20%
- Fishcake – 15%
- Donner kebab – 14%
- Steak pie – 13%
- Chicken burger – 11%
- Battered chicken – 10%
- Scampi – 10%
So, somewhat surprisingly, only a tenth of Brits choose scampi – and just over a quarter opt for a battered sausage. Not all chip shops offer donner kebab, but there’s certainly a demand for it.
What should you put on fish and chips?
There’s no hard and fast rule on what you should top your chips with, but many Brits feel strongly about this detail. From curry sauce to cheese and gravy, there are plenty of special ways to enjoy some comforting, chunky, deep-fried chips.
Jackpotjoy’s study also revealed the nation’s top five favourite chip toppings:
- Salt and vinegar – 44%
- Just salt – 12%
- Ketchup – 8%
- Curry sauce – 8%
- Mayonnaise – 5%
Northerners might be surprised to see that gravy doesn’t even claim a spot on this list – however, it could be down to the fact that more specific data on sauces is needed. Furthermore, it wouldn’t be unreasonable to suggest that more than 5% of people choose mayonnaise but won’t admit it.
One thing’s for sure: the cultural significance of fish and chips will never die down in the UK. However you prefer to eat it, you’ll always be able to rely on your local chippy.