Saturday, February 26, 2011

Paneer Butter Masala - Quick & Tasty + Restaurant ki Swad

We all love paneer :) Paneer by itself is yummy and you can make your food even more delectable by adding stuff like tomatoes, onions and spices. I can't imagine how boring Indian vegetarian cuisine would have been, had paneer not been invented! Paneer is a type of cottage cheese of Indian origin. You can make delicious kurmas/curries with paneer or make Paneer Biriyani with rice.

Whenever I want to whip up a quick yet delicious meal (and I mean 15 minutes!) on a lazy Saturday afternoon, I end up making Jeera rice or Garlic rice and Paneer Butter masala. I would like to share with you, this really quick recipe for Paneer Butter masala that tastes just like the one you get in restaurants. Yes, bilkul asli taste :)

I have passed on this recipe to a my family and friends (which in turn, has been spreading like viral!) and everyone who tried it has absolutely loved it! :)

Paneer-Butter Masala Restaurant-Style!

You Need -

Paneer - 20 cubes of 1 cm (You can find cubed Paneer in the Indian grocery stores in the Frozen section)
Butter - 1 tbsp
Fried Onions - 3 tbsp (optional, for added crunch)
Onions (chopped) - 1/2 cup
Ginger-Garlic paste - 1 tsp
Tomato puree - 3 tbsp OR Tomato paste - 2 tsp
Dhania powder (Powdered Coriander seeds) - 1 tsp
Garam masala -1/2 tsp
Red chilli powder - 3/4 tsp
Kasuri methi - 1/2 tsp
10 Cashews soaked in 3 tbsp hot milk -> Make a paste of this and use
Salt - to taste
Milk - 4 tbsp
Cream - 2 tbsp (minimum)

Steps -

  • Take a bowl, mix together the spice powders - dhania, chilli powder, garam masala and kasuri methi. Then add tomato paste and mix everything together adding water little by little. Alternatively, you may add tomato puree, but note that paste is more concentrated and should be used in lesser quantity than puree, as specified. Add the cashew paste too. Finally, add milk to this mixture. Whisk everything in the bowl together. 
  • Now, add paneer cubes into the mixture in the bowl, let it coat every piece and let the paneer marinate for about 30 to 45 minutes atleast. This marination step is cruical, more so if you're using Tofu.
  • After 45 minutes, Take a pan, Melt butter , add ginger-garlic paste and fry for 2  minutes.
  • Fry freshly chopped onions for a while and then optionally, add fried onions for a crunchy effect.

  • Pour the marinated mixture into the pan and cover for 5 minutes.You may add a little water (100 ml) as well and let it all boil together.
  • Add salt.
  • Keep flame on "Sim/Low".
  • After 5 minutes, add cream finally, mix well and switch off after 2 minutes. Garnish with coriander leaves, if you like :)
Wasn't that quick 'n easy?
Paneer-Butter Masala in 15 minutes!

Serve with roti /chapathi /phulka /naan or any Pulao rice :)


Cream is the secret to that perfect restaurant-style taste. I have tried Nestle, Amul as well as Bulla Thickened cream and they are all good. Feel free to use fresh cream, if you have the time and patience to prepare it at home. You'll need full-cream milk (milk with atleast 6% fat) to extract cream.


If you do not have paneer at home and can't travel to your Indian store, just substitute it with Tofu, if its easier to find Tofu. It then becomes Tofu-butter masala, of course! While using Tofu, I suggest marinating tofu cubes with the bowl of spices + tomato paste + cream added. About 20 minutes would do. For those who are suspicious about Tofu's taste (and don't believe me!!!), use 50% paneer and 50% tofu and try for yourself! :)


  1. Looks so Yummmm , i am gonna try this recipe :)
    Thanks for vising my site ! All the best !


  2. Hi Divya, i wnated to ask you if you use store bought tomato puree. somehow i dont like the taste of this tomato puree here in US. So when you say tomato puree or past what exactly do you mean?

  3. Hi! I have tried with both store-bought paste and puree as well as making fresh puree by extracting the juice of ripe tomatoes (remove seeds for enhanced taste). Both come out well. The secret ingredient is the Cream we add finally. Hope that helps! Cheers!


Did you like it? Found something interesting? Do you have a alternate way of doing it? Please leave a line here. Thanks!


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