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Monday, 21 January 2019

Paneer Makhani Recipe

Paneer Makhani is a delectable North Indian dish in which soft cottage cheese (paneer) cubes are simmered in a rich tomato cashew gravy along with butter and milk cream . This creamy rich dish is bit spicy, tangy and mildly sweet in taste. Paneer makhani tastes great with Indian flat breads like roti, naan or paratha but can also be served with jeera rice . Paneer makhani can be easily made at home and served on festivals and special occasions. 

Paneer or Indian cottage cheese is a good source of protein and calcium. It is an integral part of Indian cooking and we Indians fondly use this versatile ingredient in our curries, snacks, desserts. Paneer makhani is one of the most popular paneer recipes and is often found on the menus of restaurants and dhabas. Paneer makhani is rich in calories and should be consumed in moderation by weight watchers. However, on special occasions and festivals, you can pamper yourself by making it at home. By controlling the amount of butter and nuts going in the dish, we can certainly cut down few calories. Milk cream can be replaced my making the gravy in skimmed milk and a low-fat homemade paneer can be opted further to keep a check on the calorie count. 

Tomatoes form the base of this dish. Butter, milk cream, cashews lend the silky creamy texture to the gravy. Here I have used blanched almond and cashew paste and whisked the homemade full cream. Whole spices like, bay leaf, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, and black pepper add flavor and aroma. I have used homemade paneer in this dish, you may use store bought if you wish. 

I had seen a basic makhani recipe some 10 years back on a cookery show on television. Over the years, I have tailored it as per the taste of my family. Now I am so confident making this particular dish that whenever I have guest over dinner, paneer makhani is sure to be on my menu. So for this #179th week on #FoodieMondayBlogHop when Seema came up with a theme #foodmagbest, I knew for sure that I would be sharing this infallible recipe of Paneer Makhani. For this theme, we had to think of a time, when as a food blogger if we would become famous, which dish we would love to see on the cover page of a food magazine. Do try out this recipe for your loved ones and watch them ask for more. This paneer makhani dish is surely a crowd pleaser. You got to try yourself to believe me. So let's get started.

Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4

  • 250 grams paneer /Indian cottage cheese, cubed ( i have used homemade)
  • 5 medium size tomatoes
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 5-7 cashew nuts
  • 7-8 almonds
  • 2-3 tablespoon milk cream
  • 1-2 teaspoon kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • 3 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2-3 cloves
  • 2-3 black peppercorn
  • 1-inch cinnamon stick
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Salt to taste
  1. To begin with, we will make the tomato puree. For that take 3 tomatoes. Wash them, make 2 cuts (resembling +) on the base of the tomatoes with a knife. Add them to a saucepan with boiling water and cook for 3-4 minutes. Put off the flame, peel the skin, chop the tomatoes roughly and blend them to a lump-free puree in a grinder jar.

2. While the tomatoes are boiling for puree, we will make the onion tomato paste. For that heat 1 1/2 tablespoon butter in a pan and add the whole spices (bay leaf, cinnamon, cardamom, black peppercorns and cloves). Let the spices fry in butter for about half a minute. Next add in the finely chopped onions and saute for 1-2 minutes. Chop the remaining 2 tomatoes finely and add to this. Saute the onions and tomatoes for 2-3 minutes. Put off the flame. Allow the mix to cool down a bit. Try to remove as many whole spices from the mix as possible before transferring it to a grinder jar. Blend to make a fine paste without adding any water.

3. Blanch the almonds and cashews. For this, place them in a glass bowl with water and heat in a microwave for 3 minutes. Now peel the almond skin and transfer them to  a grinder jar and adding water, little at a time, and make a fine paste.

  1. Now that we are ready with the tomato puree, onion tomato paste, almond cashew paste and paneer cubes, we will proceed with cooking the paneer makhani curry. For that heat remaining butter in a pan. Add the tomato puree to it and cook until it is reduced and thick.

2. Add the onion tomato paste to it and stir fry the mix for 2-3 minutes or until it starts releasing oil.At this stage add the red chili powder and sugar. Mix well and stir fry for half a minute.

3. Next add almond cashew paste and blend it well with the gravy masala. Now lower the flame, whisk the milk cream well with a whisker and add it to this masala. Give a good mix.

4. Add half cup of hot water and salt to taste. Stir well. Next tip in the paneer cubes. Mix them well with the gravy. Cover cook the paneer makhani for 3-4 minutes on low to medium flame.

5. Lastly add garam masala and crushed fenu greek leaves. Give a quick stir and put off the flame. Cover the pan and allow the aroma and flavor of kasuri methi and garam masala to infuse in the curry for about 5 minutes, before serving the gravy.

6. Serve the utterly delicious paneer makhani with chapati. naan or jeera rice and enjoy with your loved ones.

 Recipe Notes:
  • This recipe does not call for addition of garlic ginger paste. You may add though if you wish.
  • Use of kashmiri red chili powder is recommended to get this lovely color to the gravy.
  • You may add about a cup of hot water to the masala to get a little runny consistency of the gravy. We love it this thick. If you are making this gravy ahead of time, add little more water and adjust the cooking time as the gravy thickens further on cooling.
  • Do not skip the sugar , as paneer makhani is mildly sweet in taste which balances the tangy , spicy flavors of the gravy.
  • To cut down a few calories from this rich paneer makhani, without compromising much on flavor, you may add skimmed milk instead of water to make the gravy and skip the milk cream completely. Use low fat milk to make paneer and replace the cashews completely by almonds. 
If you ever try this recipe, do share your feedback with us in the comment section below.
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For more paneer recipes, do check out the following 





  1. That surely is a crowd pleaser, poonam ! And I loved ur recipe and clicks too .. I make it very similarly , but omitting
    The cream totally and adding a little more cashew / soaked almond paste which makes it very creamy -

  2. The Paneer Makhani looks delicious, Poonam! :) Love the way you have made it, and the photograph too.

  3. I agree, some days you should just enjoy eating a little extra and make up on other days. That's one way of living your life happily with good food, isn't it? Love the Makhani gravy. Excellent for winters to scoop up with hot parathas on a weekend.

  4. Paneer makhani is making me drool. Its so creamy and super tempting. Love homemade paneer makhani as its way better than restaurant bought one.

  5. Love the colour of the paneer makhani! The image looks very attractive and I would be happy to dig into the dish with some hot tandoori roti.

  6. Paneer Makhni looks so creamy and rich.A hot fovourite with my boys.Home made is always the best.Awesome share Poonam.

  7. Loved this creamy rich Paneer Makhani recipe with almonds and cashews!! The bowl looks so tempting and you have captured the colors so beautifully!!

  8. Your paneer makhani makes me drool. Loved your click. Fabulous share Poonam. Colour of the gravy is just wow.

  9. The paneer makhani looks super delicious Poonam   Love that you have picked up this dish for theme sharing here

  10. Beautifully presented paneer makhani. The makhani looks n sounds so yummy. I want to rush n cook it up in my kitchen though I have no paneer or tomatoes:D

  11. ooo super love. Look at that luscious treat. Truly Foodmagspecial indeed.

  12. This looks so good Poonam. This is my daughter's favourite. Love the way you have photographed it

  13. I Just recommend you to Use - Kagome Foods India Pvt Ltd: No.1 Tomato Company in India
    Kagome Food India manufactures Crushed Tomato, Tomato Soup Base, Italian Pizza Pasta Sauce, Tomato Puree,Makhani Gravy Base.

  14. Thanks for wonderful post!!!!