Paneer / Cottage cheese / Tofu is the most popular ingredient used in vegan cooking in India. It is the most common food item that you’ll find on the restaurant menu regardless of state or region. And there are some common paneer dishes which are famous all across India and every restaurant makes sure to have these dishes on their menu card. These dishes are not only delicious but simple to cook.
Most common Paneer Recipes in India
Paneer butter masala Recipe
The Paneer Butter Masala is a Punjabi curry prepared using cottage cheese, tomato, onion, cream and butter. It’s a little sweet gravy based dish which is mostly eaten with Naan or Chapati or tandoori roti.
- 125 grams paneer
- 1 tomato (grind to a fine paste)
- 1 Tsp tomato puree
- 2 onions (grind to fine paste)
- 1 tsp Cumin Powder
- 1 tsp Dhania Powder (coriander powder)
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste
- 3 cloves
- 1 tsp cashews
- 1 Cinnamon stick
- 1/2 tsp Garam masala powder
- 1/4 tsp chilli powder
- 3 Tsp Yogurt
- coriander leaves
- 4-5 Tsp butter
- Grind cloves, cinnamon to fine powder
- Heat oil, fry few paneer cubes on medium heat until golden brown. Set the paneer pieces aside.
- Grate remaining paneer and keep it aside
- Heat oil or butter, fry onions, ginger garlic paste, for 3 minutes.
- Add tomato paste and puree and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add cashews, Dhania powder, Cumin powder, garam masala powder, salt,chilli powder, extra butter and masala powder from step 1.
- Add yogurt and stir until gravy becomes thick. Add fried paneer cubes, grated paneer add 1/2 -1 cup water and simmer for 5 minutes, until all the flavour is absorbed into paneer.
- Serve hot garnished with coriander leaves.
Palak Paneer Recipe
It is another very famous Cottage cheese based dish which is loved all over India. The main ingredients of this dish are Palak (spinach), cream and Paneer (tofu). Palak Paneer is actually a Dhaba dish which is found in all the road side restaurants in Northern India. The dish is basically spinach gravy with diced tofu pieces. Some people fry the pieces first and then add them to the gravy and some add the tofu at an initial stage of the gravy preparation and cook it with the gravy.
- Spinach – 500 gms
- Onions – 5 medium sized
- Garlic – 2-3 flakes
- Cooking oil – 6-7 tbsps
- Cummin seeds – 1 tbsp
- Paneer – 150-200 gms
- Salt to taste
- Garam Masala
- Geera Powder
- Chilli Powder
- Cook the spinach in water.
- Drain the water and then make puree of the spinach leaves.
- Cut 4 of the onions finely and saute them till transparent.
- Grind the other onion and the garlic flakes to a fine paste.
- Add this paste to the sauted onions. Also add the puree and the spice powders. Add some water if necessary.
- Let boil for a minute or two.
- Cut the paneer to cubes of desired size (preferably not too small). Fry this in oil till golden brown
- Add this paneer to the prepared palak.
- Serve hot with rice or rotis.
Mutter(green peas) paneer Recipe
This is a very common dish often made in Indian households. One of the easiest curry based dish is probably the tastiest Paneer dish. The main ingredients of the dish are green peas, Paneer, onion and tomato. It is cooked like any other day to day curry.
- 1 1/2 cups of green peas
- 1 cup of paneer cubed
- 2 medium onions chopped
- 1 tomato chopped
- 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- pinch of asafetida (hing)
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 tsp poppy seeds
- 5 cashewnuts
- salt per taste
- 3 tbsp oil
- coriander to garnish
- Boil the green peas and keep aside.
- Heat the oil in a pan.Put the onions, asafoetida, ginger garlic paste and fry till the onions are slightly browned.
- Put the tomatoes, turmeric powder and fry for another 5 minutes on low flame.
- Add red chilli powder, garam masala and saute for few minutes.
- Add the peas with little amount of water and bring it to a boil.
- Meanwhile grind the cashews and poppy seeds to a fine paste.
- Now add the cashew-poppy paste .Stir gently and let the gravy thicken.
- Finally add the paneer cubes.Cook for a minute and remove from fire.
- Garnish with coriander leaves and serve hot
Paneer Tikka Recipe
The most preferred vegetarian starter and undoubtedly the delicious one is the Paneer Tikka. The big chunks of marinated cottage cheese are simply mouth watering. The dish hails from the North Indian state Punjab. It is the best barbecued paneer one can ever have.
- 250 gms Paneer
- Pinch tandoori color
- 1/2 cup Curd (tied in cloth for 2 hours)
- 1 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tsp red Chilli Powder
- 1/2 tsp tandoori Masala
- 1/2 tsp Chaat Masala
- 1/2 tsp garam masala
- 1/2 tsp Cumin Seeds, crushed
- 1 tbsp each Capsicum, Onion, Tomato, Carrots, sliced in long stripes
- Coriander leaves, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp Butter
- Add red chili powder, garam masala powder, ginger garlic paste, tandoori color, tandoori masala, coriander leaves, salt to curd and mix well.
- Add chopped paneer pieces. Keep it aside for about an hour.
- Heat oil and some butter in a pan. Fry the paneer masala till paneer turns golden brown. The tikka is ready.
- Add remaining butter to pan, heat.
- Add sliced vegetables, chaat masala and salt to taste.
- Pour over the paneer tikka.
- Serve hot with sauce or green coriander chutney or mint chutney.
Paneer Bhurji Recipe
The paner bhurji looks like scrambled eggs cooked with onion and tomato. The bhurji is a side dish but some people have it as a main course as well. The recipe is simple but the taste is exotic.
- 2 tbsp oil
- 4 tsp chopped garlic
- 1 tbsp chopped ginger
- 1-2 chopped green chillies
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 diced onions
- 1/4 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp chilli powder
- 2 tomatoes diced
- 400 gm crumbled paneer
- 1 diced capsicum
- 1 tbsp chopped coriander
- 1/2 tsp chat masala
- Heat oil in large pan. Add ginger, garlic and chillies.
- After 20 seconds stir in cumin and onions. Cook onions until soft, stir in turmeric and chilli powder over a fast flame.
- Add tomatoes and allow juices to evaporate. Lower heat, add paneer and heat through.
- Season well. Add capsicum and coriander.
- Sprinkle with chat masala before serving.