Rechargeable batteries based on metallic anodes are of interest for fundamental and application-focused studies of chemical and physical kinetics of liquids at solid interfaces. Approaches that allow facile creation of uniform coatings on these metals to prevent physical contact with liquid electrolytes, while enabling fast ion transport, are essential to address chemical instability of the anodes. Here, we report a simple electroless ion-exchange chemistry for creating coatings of indium on lithium. By means of joint density functional theory and interfacial characterization experiments, we show that In coatings stabilize Li by multiple processes, including exceptionally fast surface diffusion of lithium ions and high chemical resistance to liquid electrolytes. Indium coatings also undergo reversible alloying reactions with lithium ions, facilitating design of high-capacity hybrid In-Li anodes that use both alloying and plating approaches for charge storage. By means of direct visualization, we further show that the coatings enable remarkably compact and uniform electrodeposition. The resultant In-Li anodes are shown to exhibit minimal capacity fade in extended galvanostatic cycling when paired with commercial-grade cathodes.