Palak Paneer – Indian Cheese-Spinach Curry


Palak Paneer is a delicious, hearty North Indian dish prepared with spinach and Indian cheese. This traditional greens based vegetarian dish is a rich, smooth, creamy curry where paneer cubes are cooked in a onion-tomato-spinach based gravy which is moderately spiced with Indian spices.

I have tried various variations of the Palak Paneer curry and one of my favorites has been this particular recipe given to me by a dear Punjabi friend, Darshan.

The smooth and creamy consistency, melt in the mouth paneer cubes and the simple ingredients which go into making this dish give it a delightful subtle sweet flavor that is sure to keep you satisfied. This curry makes a great accompaniment with rotis, naan or hot steamed rice.

Palak Paneer Recipe

Recipe source: My friend Darshan

Prep & Cooking: 45mts

Serves 5-6 persons

Cuisine: North Indian

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Ingredients:

250 gms paneer (cubed and lightly fried till brown in a tsp of ghee)

3 big bunches spinach (discard the coarse stems) – blanch in hot water for 2 mts and make a paste and keep aside

1 ½-2 tbsp ghee (clarified butter)

1 tsp cumin seeds

2 onions finely chopped

2 green chillis slit length wise

1 tsp ginger garlic paste

1 tsp red chilli pwd

1 tbsp coriander pwd

2 big juicy tomatoes (blanched in hot water, peeled and pureed)

1 cup water (use the water in which spinach was blanched)

salt to taste

½ tsp garam masala pwd (make a pwd of 2 cloves, 1 cardamom and 1” cinnamon stick)

1 tbsp malai (top of milk)

¼ tsp kasuri methi (optional)

1 Add ghee in a heavy bottomed vessel and add cumin seeds and let them splutter. Add the onions and green chillis sauté them till light brown. Don’t burn them.
2 Add ginger garlic paste and fry further for 3 minutes. Add red chilli pwd and coriander pwd and combine well.
3 Add the tomato paste and let it cook for 5-6 mts on medium heat. Add the palak paste and let it cook further for another 4-5 mts.
4 Add the fried paneer cubes and combine. Cook covered on low heat for 3 mts. Add the palak water and salt and cook on medium heat for 10-12 mts.
5 Add malai, garam masala pwd and kasuri methi and mix well.
6 Reduce flame, cover and cook for 2 mts.
7 Serve hot with rotis or white steamed rice or rotis.

Note:

You could also add paneer directly (without frying in ghee) to the cooked spinach. Another variation you could do with the spinach is coarsely chop the spinach and stir fry in a little ghee instead of pureeing it and add it ( instead of the palak paste). But to get the creamy consistency, you have to blanch and puree the palak.

Palak Paneer – Indian Cheese-Spinach Curry

  Prepare time:
 Serves: 2

 Main Ingredients:

  •  spinach
  •   paneer

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116 thoughts on “Palak Paneer – Indian Cheese-Spinach Curry

  1. hi
    i am big fan of ur cooking site and thank u for ur great recipies ..ur palak paneer looks yummy…i got this secret tip .try adding half tsp of tamarind paste at the end of the cooking and let it cook for few more mins.. u have to try it to know the difference thank you!!

  2. Mouth watering presentation! Palak paneer is one dish I always order at restaurants but I am disappointed with the ones made at home. I will try your recipe soon.

  3. WOW…those are wonderful pictures Sailu, great job. I just love paneer, any restaurant I go a paneer dish is a sure one and more so Palak paneer. I’ve never tried making it at home as the paneer I get here is not so good. But next time I get some good paneer I’m going to give ur recipe a try 🙂

  4. Just found your site and love it, as I am passsionately interested in Indian food and am currently teaching myself how to make the wonderful dishes. I have tried a Palak Paneer recipe at home, turned out OK, the paneer was very good but the spinach lacked something. I want to try yours, can you explain what is meant by making a paste from the spinach? Is it chopped, blended in food processor…..that part confuses me. Any help is appreciated!! Thanks, Kate.


    Spinach is not chopped, Kate. Blanch in hot water, strain and blend to make a fine paste. Use the strained water during the cooking process. Hope this helps.

  5. Sailu,

    I tried this recipe although the taste was great, the texture of the panneer in the gravy was like rubber. I used store brought paneer. Do you have any suggestions to make them absolutely melt in the mouth kind as shown in your picture.

    Thanks in advance,
    Raji

  6. hi sailu,
    the paneer looks delicious. lovely photos. hadn’t been to your blog for a while but i’ve bookmarked it now (i’m still old fashioned!) and will return regularly.

  7. Hi Sailu,
    I just discovered your site and I am amazed! Not only by your cooking but your photos as well! They are awesome! I have tried to use your techniques but not coming out the same (have a look at http://theclothedcook.blogspot.com).
    Also I am not a big fan of paneer and I was wondering if I could substitute for tofu. Do you think the essence of curry will be lost?
    Will be coming here regularly!
    Praveena.

  8. the recipe and the pics bring back my faith in palak paneer sailu. the past few times i had this both in other people’s houses and restaurants, i hated the stuff. most people up north put too much of butter and that kinda mars the taste.
    will try out your recipe one of these days.
    btw how is your little one?

    I am sure you will enjoy this version of the palak paneer as its not very high in calories, Rums. Thanks for enquiring about my lil fella, he’s doing good..::)

  9. Will go to the Indian groceries today and buy palak and paneer and make the dish and surprise my daughter who always says “amma, how can you manage to be such a bad cook. It takes an effort, isn’t it?” Well daughter, wait and see what amma serves next.

    So the little one is in for a surprise from Amma..:):). I hope you guys enjoy this delicious dish, Chandrika.

  10. Hi Sailaja,
    I was always waiting for our indian dishes.
    Thank you for the work you are doing.
    I will try this out this week end..
    yash

    Thanks for dropping by, Yasaswy. I hope you like the recipes..:)

  11. i need some advice,i’ve been tryin ure recipes from time to time, recently i tried a new recipe, a mustard curry fish recipe, but the curry came out tasting quite bitter, and i’m confused why? and what could i do to decrease the bitterness….
    thanks for ure help….

  12. hai Sailu!!!
    ur recipe is very nice and very easy to prepare..
    I want to know the recipe of dry fruit halwa. Can u help me out??

  13. hi,sailu
    ur recipe is very nice its so easy and i want to know the recipe of chicken biryani.can u please help me,take care

    thank u,
    chinni

  14. hai sailu,
    i saw all ur dishes made by paneer and can u help me in doing 1 thing. i am going to participate in a contest which will be held in few more days in my hometown and we have to do snacks with paneer so can u send me the recipe of any snacks made with paneer and i am very sure that i can win the contest if u help me in sending the recipe.

    I will be preparing a paneer snack tomorrow and will blog about it too. You can check my blog for the recipe on 4th or 5th March. Hope the recipe serves your purpose, Manju.

  15. It is a pleasure to check the recipes at your blog. It is done with so much appreciation and care. Thanks.

    May I add one tip please?. The palak retains the green colour if it is blanched in hot water and immediately held under cold water. Another tip is to add some sugar while blanching to retain the green colour.

    Please do continue your good work. god bless

  16. Hi,
    I found your recipe from a google search that i did… i made it with a couple of changes but with the same ingredients that you mentioned : (a) After frying the paneer, i added the cream to it and let it soak for 15 mins to soften it, and so didn’t add the cream as in the step 5 of your recipe. (b) green chilli: I added it while making the ginger garlic paste and therefore didnt add it separately while frying as in step 1.

    Overall the result was absolutely delicious and thanks a lot for providing this recipe. I made it for the first time, and it was amazingly delicious with hot rotis!

  17. I tried your recipe and it turned out awesome! I made my own paneer and did not fry it… still yummy! Thanks for sharing.

  18. hi sailu,

    ur receipe is very nice & very easy, i am tempted a lot to prepare it by seeing the photos of the dish in ur site, it’s really superb. all the best.

  19. Hi,
    I am in love with your website.Beautiful and definitely mouth watering presentation.Yesterday I made chicken masala meatballs my son loved them.I find myself drawn to your website and comming back to check your website for more.I appreciate you sharing your recipes and making it excitng to cook.Thank you.

  20. Hey Sailu,

    I love this site because it gave me all the receipes i’ve been looking for, especially the Andhra style of cooking. I come from Hyderabad and currently living in NY. I’ve always wondered how they made the pachadi’s. Thanks to you now i know, i’ve tried them out and they were just like the ones i had in India.

    So thank you and keep posting more Andra style receipes.

    Pearl…

  21. Sailu, I just had to tell you that I made your palak paneer today. I am a self-professed palak paneer hater, but my husband loves the dish. Well, yours came out so well that he loved it and you’ve managed to convert me to liking palak paneer. Kudos to you!

  22. Just made the Palak Paneer. This was an awesome recipe! I had eaten it at a Indian restaurant yesterday and this recipe (and my cooking!) was on par with the restaurants! Thank you so much for sharing this with us so that I can make this at home for my family! I fried the paneer and soaked it in milk rather than cream and pureed all the pastes together with the onions after cooking it, before adding the paneer. This would also be great with chicken for a non-vegetarian dish. Thanks again!

  23. Sailu,

    I always liked recipes from your blog (not just the pictures but how the food tastes once you make it).
    My wife visits your blog but every once in a while when I am not lazy enough and decide to cook something, I pick a recipe from your site.

    This valentines day, my wife made the best palak paneer I had in a long time. Thanks for the recipe.

    Today, its my turn to make the same dish again. We both loved it. thank you.

  24. Hi,

    I have a doubt in palak. Is palak and pudhina same? I went to supermarket there i found all greens named spinach such as round spinach, small spinach. Shall we call pudhina as spinach. or spinach is different from pudina. Please tell this. Becoz of this confusion, i not able 2 try this recipe.

    Pudina is called mint and palak is spinach.

  25. Dear Sailu,

    Hope you are well. I tried making this at home but it tasted bitter. Where do you think I went wrong or how can I fix this? Please advise?

    Many Thanks Sailu garu,

    Regards

    Manav

    Did you blanch the palak leaves enough that they turn soft or were they still kacha (raw)? Sometimes the spinach variety could have a bitter flavor. Do try it another time and give me your feedback. If its bitter, try adding a little milk and sugar towards the end of the cooking process and go on stirring till the milk is well combined. ~ ‘Sailaja’

  26. Hi Sailu,
    I found your site on a google search. I simply love the recipes posted and I really want to thank you for them. This is the best cooking website as to my knowledge. I tried many recipes from your site like dal makhani, paneer butter masala, paneer makhani and above all andhra mutton curry. They all turned out to be delicious. Thank once again and keep up up the good work.
    P.S….I like your description of them too:).

  27. Thanks sailaja garu for the wonderful recipe…….at first i was a bit hestistant to try this out as the recipe contained less ingredients/spices and what if my husband doesnt like its taste…..but u know he really liked it….and asks for it whenever i plan to make Naans/roti.

  28. Hi Sailu,

    I was looking for a good palak paneer recipe today on google. I found ur recipe there. Perfect! I will try your version today and post about it later in the day or may be in the evening!

    Regards,
    Veda

  29. HI Sailu,

    I found your recipe for palak paneer through a google search and attempted to make it last night. It was my first time cooking with paneer and it turned out sort of rubbery or like firm tofu. Is it supposed to be creamy and melt in your mouth? If so where did I go wrong? From reading the other reviews it looks like I did miss a step and never soaked it in cream after frying. Is that what makes it soft? I love your site though and will be back to try some more recipes!

    Thanks,

    Ted

    1. Dont over cook the paneer after you add it to the gravy! If using frozen (instead of home made), I found that it helps to soak in warm water to get to room temp before pan roasting them in ghee. And using a good brand of paneer or home made paneer helps to get the right firmness.

  30. hi sailu, i am an actor. i do a daily serial called sravanti in which i play saranya alias sravanti. i have lot of fans but i am ur greatest fan. i love cooking and i have passion for it. whenever i get time i log on to ur site to see the latest recipe. ur pictures makes it even more interesting and every dish i try i get it just right. good recipes. keep it up. i would like to know the recipe of typical hyderabadi handi biryani. i know u live in vizaq if i come to vizaq i would love to meet you. all the best bye !

  31. My husband has tried many online recipes for palak paneer and all of them turned out horrible!

    We tried your recipe last week and ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!!!

    Thank you 🙂

  32. Hello Sailu ,

    Thought of messaging you long back but couldnt get time to do

    Hmm let me tell about my Palak paneer

    It just turned out awesome though it was my first try

    My dad mom n bro liked it a lottt…And i enjoyed my success …

    Thanks for it. It came out so well coz of ur recipe..

    Tc ..sailu 🙂 Bye…

  33. hi sailu .
    i really enjoying to watch your blog
    and i liked this receipe very much
    palak paneer is my favourite dish in north indian food
    i really thank to send this item
    thanks alot

  34. Hi Sailu

    I reach office 15 minutes early. As soon as I turn on my computer I go to my favourites and click on your website. You make my day. Thanks

    I buy frozen spinach. Are you able to tell me the weight in grams for
    the spinach used in the recipe

    Thanks and looking foward to the taro stirfry recipe

    1. Your welcome, Sarita. 🙂 I will not be able to tell you the weight in grams. But you could use about 1 1/2 cups of blanched and pureed spinach for this recipe. Yes, will blog the taro fry recipe soon.

  35. love it- really good- kasuri methi adds a layer of complexity. One of my favorite dishes and the kids love it. I will try others too.
    thanks

  36. What a gorgeous recipe! I followed it exactly…actually timed how many minutes I was frying everything and it turned out wonderful! I added some extra half n half though to make it more creamy!

  37. This recipe worked out so well! Thank you for sharing, it took me a while to find a good pureed variety of palak paneer recipe to follow. 🙂

  38. Sailugaru,
    thanks alot for posting such a great receipe….yesterday i prepared this dish..it was really very delicious and i got complements from my husband.

    Thanks,
    Vani

  39. Pingback: Meatless Monday: Palak Paneer « Blueberries + Bronzer
  40. hey sailu iam little bit confused of using tomatoes in tis curry since doctors are strictly asking not to use the combi of tomatoes and spinach so would u please suggest anu substite of tomatoes

  41. Great recipe! Now how about using the correct units of measure… gms, mts? Pwd is usually recognised as password, and “powder” is only three letter longer…

    Really.

    1. Wow Sean – Stop being mean now! It is her blog, and the last time I checked this is certainly no grammar session. This is a home-cook posting her recipes for YOUR benefit. And most of us that are regular cooks do not have a problem.

  42. Hi Sailu I just love your blog. I tried this recipe and it was very yummy. Thank you for posting such wonderful recipes.

  43. dear sailu, today i prepared ur palak paneer and little earlier paneer butter masala for a small get together. i liked both the recipies very much and while preparing kakarakaya kura i accidently invented i mean somebody would have done the recipie before inspired by ur recipie. thanks to you sailu .thank you very much . my son liked ur palak paneer so much that he refused to share it with others. thanks to you..

  44. looks amazing . I will make for sure. I had Indian food for the first time a few months ago and will i feel in love with it. I want to learn how to make it all! Thank you so very much

  45. Thank you so much for this savory recipe. My family devoured it and begged me to make more! I added a handful of walnuts to the Cuisinart. I found it really added dimension and complemented the garam masala beautifully. I can’t wait to try more of your recipes!

  46. I have to say this is the best Palak Paneer Recipe I have tried. It came out very good the first time around (without the ghee, the fried paneer or the malai). Today I made it the same way as last time instead I used half spinach and half kale and was surprised how good it tasted. It was definately a double bonus on nutrition. Thanks so much for your amazing recipies.

  47. I tried this receipe today and it really came out very good….i just loved the aroma. Thank you so much and could you please share your chole receipe with us.

  48. Thank a lot for the wonderful recipe. My famiy loved it and they said its the best palak paneer I have cooked . Keep up the good work. You are indeed helping spread smile amongst so many people . God bless you! Best wishes

  49. Hi there,
    I have not tried your palak paneer yet, I landed up here on a remedy search for bitter Palak paneer. i did not believe Ï will find a solution. But on just adding milk as you have suggested to someone it worked superrrr …Thanks , You made my day as it would have been impossible to make another dish with dinner to be eaten soon.

  50. Unlike other recipes that I have tried on this site, this one turned NOT delicious at all. Will have to try again, I must have done something wrong. What size onions should I use? Also what is the weight of spinach to be used if fresh or frozen? The frozen spinach bag contains frozen balls of finely minced spinach (Deep is the make). Should I still blanch them? I used two Deep bags and 400 gms of paneer as my kids love paneer. Also basted the paneer cubes in oil and broiled them every so slightly to get them brown. This part worked well.

    1. So sorry you did not have a good experience with this recipe. In India, a large onion is equivalent to half an onion (American onions). Use one onion (American ones). Use 5-6 cups of chopped spinach (packed). Yes, you can blanch them and use.

  51. i made this recipe today and it was absolutely delicious ! my husband who normally doesn’t like spinach appreciated it which is a big thing . Thank you so much for posting this wonderful recipe . i am so glad that after browsing through innumerable sites and recipes i finally settled down on yours. it was no less than any restaurant in terms of taste and texture !

  52. wow what delicious recipe it was lovely i loved it.those who won’t take leafy things they can eat like this…………..

  53. I tried this recipe but it didn’t turn out well…..
    I used tofu instead of paneer……the palak paste was very raw even after cooking……:(

  54. Hi Sailu,

    I tried your palak paneer recipe today and it turned out awesome. I love to cook using your recipes, my chicken chettinard was also superb. thank you for all your posts…they are very helpful and delicious!…next attempt is Hyderabadi Aloo Biryani 🙂

  55. Awesome recipe… I always follow you blog. I tried this palak paneer recipe yesterday for the first time and it was really delicious….Thanks a lot!

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