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Butter Paneer Masala

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Butter Paneer Masala is a rich entre made with Indian cheese and a creamy sauce. This dish is tasty when served over white rice or with Naan or Tandoori Roti.

Serves 2 to 4

Butter Paneer MasalaIngredients:

  • 1/2 lb. paneer (cubed)
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 1 green chili
  • 1/4 inch piece ginger
  • 1/2 cup green peas (optional)
  • 1/2 cup yogurt, whipped
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • Pinch of asafetida (hing)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds (jeera)
  • 1 tablespoon coriander powder (dhania)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric (haldi)
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder (lal mirch)
  • 2 bay leaves (tajpat)
  • 1 teaspoon salt adjust to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro (Green coriander)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (optional)

Method

  1. Deep-fry the paneer on low-medium heat until the paneer has a little golden- brown color. Set aside.
  2. Blend tomatoes, green chilly and ginger to make a puree.
  3. Heat the oil in a saucepan. Test the heat by adding one cumin seed to oil; if seed cracks right away oil is ready.
  4. Add hing and cumin seeds.
  5. After the cumin seeds crack, add the tomato puree, coriander powder, turmeric, red chili powder and bay leaves. Cook for about 4 minutes on medium heat.
  6. Tomato mixture will start to leave the oil and will reduce to about half in quantity.
  7. Add the whipped yogurt into the gravy. Stir occasionally for about 3 minutes on medium heat.
  8. To thicken the gravy, dissolve the cornstarch in 3 tablespoons of water and add to the gravy.
  9. Add the green peas and paneer. Let it cook for a few minutes until the peas are tender.
  10. Add the garam masala and cilantro. Add a little sugar if the gravy is sour.

Variations

  1. You can substitute the yogurt with heavy cream for a richer flavor.
  2. 1 tablespoon of fresh or dried methi leaves (Fenugreek leaves) can be added at the end.
  3. Add in the yogurt powder of 4 to 5 cashews to make it creamier.
  4. This gravy can be used in any combination of vegetables you desire.

This recipe is only a method – feel free to be creative and experiment!


151 thoughts on “Butter Paneer Masala

  1. Thank U Manjula Aunty for such delicious recipes. actually i m newly married and i learn a lot of things to cook from ur site. my husband loved the butter paneer masala so much that he desired this one only for three consecutive days…m so happy. Thank U so much.

  2. Manjula!
    What a wonderful website. Had I known about it sooner I would have been making my own paneer sooner. I want to know specifically what kind of milk I should use to get the flavor of paneer I find in Mumbai when I visit? Is it goat, buffalo or cow milk I should be using? And what percent? PErhaps it does not make a difference. Thank you for your quickest response. I so want to make this soon.

  3. Hello Manjulaji–I made this for dinner two nights ago along with paneer from your recipe. It was so very delicious. I really appreciate you taking the time to put your recipes and videos on your website so everyone can learn to cook Indian food. I have tried several other Indian cooking websites and actual cookbooks but the food never turns out as good as yours. Also, the amount of salt is always perfect in your recipes!

  4. Nice one! I have tried a few of your recipes and they have come out well. Just a quick question on this one – why do we add yogurt to this dish?

    Thank you so much for your time.

  5. mam, i have noticed one thing u r not using onion in your receipes really wonderful without onion u r making delicious dishes thank u mam

  6. Made this for my grandmom who doesn’t eat onion or garlic. She normally eats the same bland paneer matar every week, so this was a lovely change for her. She was thrilled. It turned out perfect, and I like that it used curd instead of butter or cream. Somehow seems far healthier that way ;)

  7. Delicious..I like a little cinnamon and sugar too. This may be funny, but the dishes are the easy part; it’s the basmati that I can’t get just right and fluffy. It’s always sticky-what am I doing wrong?? I didn’t know rice could be so complicated.

  8. I tried Butter Paneer Masala and it came out well. My family loved it and this is the first time i made it. But it taste too sour and pls tell me what can i do to reduce it. I also add little sugar.
    Thanks for your lovely recipies .

    1. Hi Preethi- One of the reasons it can become sour is if you use the market paste for ginger…or else the yoghurt was too sour. Try subsituting this with fresh cream, as i always use fresh cream…u can also add a spoonful of honey..that also works for me…

  9. we are living in auckland, NZ and everytime i am watching your video and making new recipe for my family. we are very happy for ur suggestions. looking forward for it…

    Thank you.

  10. I had once eaten a sweet in india. and it was called PINNI
    it was so tasty and i can not find it in europe anywhere.
    is it possible to make this dish in my home. do you have any recepie for it. it was brown in colour and had gum inside it as well.
    was moth watering and i had understood it was also very nutritional.

  11. What did I do that made the end result a bit bitter? Is that why you offer the option of adding the sugar which i did not do?

    Thank you my special cooking friend!

  12. Manjula,

    My new BFF as the kids would say. We tried this tonight.

    I have never been able to cook the Paneer without it falling apart. We fried it a bit long, it got browner than yours but the dish came out fantastic!

    We like hotter food so I used one jalapeno and one cherry pepper without the seeds or pulp. Then added two of the small thin very hot green peppers the size of a pen cap and left in the seeds.

    Also used 1/2 cream and 1/2 Stonyfield (they are a customer of ours) Greek yogurt.

    All else was the same, I would have paid $20 for this dish in a nice copper bowl at a restaurant.

    Peace

  13. I have now made paneer and this recipe a couple of times and my family love it. I’m an orthodox Jew and your recipes work wonderfully for our lifestyle. My daughter loves to watch your videos, too! I’m looking forward to making more recipes from your site.

  14. HI
    I wanted to know what can i buy if i Can’t get Paneer.. I live in UK and I tried looking into supermarkets for Paneer.. Will any Hard, drained Cottage cheese will do the same??

  15. thanks for your recipes which look so easy to make/

    But why dont you use Onions and garlic. Could you please specify

    Thanks

    1. she’s jain, and in jain cuisine, onions and garlic are not used – …i don’t know, but I’d estimate anywhere between 4-6 cloves of garlic, minced finely and 1 onion, minced finely…especially for recipes like rajma, shahi paneer, etc. You would fry them initially with the oil, after adding the jeera (cumin), and before the tomatoes.

      1. Onions & garlic are not used in Buddhist cooking either, and I believe in orthodox Hindu, as well. They are considered impediments to meditation. Usually asafatoeda (hing) are used as a substitute. In my experience, the other spices make up for them not being used in that the food is delicious without it.

  16. Hello Manjulaji, I tried this receipe and we loved it. Thank you so much for making cooking such a easy job. Regards, Shalaka

  17. Thank u MANJULA JI for being JAIN! because we also don’t eat ONION n GARLIC.I’m so thankful to u to open such a lovely website.After my daughter found this website and we discovered that you are not using onion and garlic I was so HAPPY I was not able to controll my HAPPINESS !!!!!!!! Now I open your website to know more and more RECIPES!!!!

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