Deep-fried salt and pepper octopus

Never cooked octopus at home? Try this easy entrée recipe today!

Deep-frying, when done properly, is a great way to cook seafood. It’s fast, cooking most foods in a few minutes, it quickly seals the food’s surface, locking in flavour and moisture and it adds appealing crunch, colour and aroma.


1kg baby octopus, cleaned and cut into small pieces
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
1 tablespoon crushed coriander seeds 
2 tablespoons salt flakes, crushed 
1 tablespoon crushed white peppercorns 
2 cups tapioca starch
Vegetable oil, for deep-frying


1. Place octopus, fish sauce and lemon juice in a bowl and marinate for 30 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
2. Place chilli, coriander, salt, pepper and cornflour in a large freezer bag, add the octopus and shake well to coat. Place octopus in a colander and shake well to remove excess flour.
3. Heat oil in a wok or deep-fryer to 190ºC. Add octopus and cook for 1-2 minutes, until crisp and tender.


  • Alternative species: Calamari, cuttlefish, squid, green prawns (peeled and deveined).  
  • Season: Available year round. 
  • To Buy: When purchasing fresh whole Octopus look for intact bright skin, intact head and arms, and a pleasant fresh sea smell. 
  • To Store: Make sure Octopus is gutted and cleaned thoroughly. Wrap in plastic wrap or place in an airtight container. Refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months below -18ºC.