Paneer Makhani/ Paneer Butter Masala

June 29, 2019mayurisjikoni
Blog post



Land of the Golden Temple, land of lassi, land of golden wheat, the land of the five rivers that is Punjab. Its the area where first civilization flourished around 2500BC, The Indus Civilization. Punjab is named after the five rivers, “Punj” means five and “aab” means water in Persian. The five rivers are Beas, Ravi, Chenab, Sutlej and Jehlum. Sikhism was founded in Punjab. Guru Nanak Dev laid the foundation of Sikhism in the late 15th Century. Did you know that Punjab and Haryana share the same capital city, Chandigarh? I didn’t till I read up a bit about Punjab.


A state of colorful festivals and dances, then food from that place has to be awesome. Punjabi Cuisine is the most popular cuisine worldwide compared to other cuisines of India. Any Indian restaurant will serve naan, kulchas, makhani dal, paneer butter masala, palak paneer, paneer tikka, tadka dal, chose, tandoori chicken, machli Amritsari, and the famous lassi. Punjabi cuisine is well known for its rich buttery gravies, tandoori cooking, and wheat, rice, dairy products are staples in their daily diet along with greens and other vegetables, fish and chicken.

If you ask me what my best Punjabi food is then it has to be the Karma Prashad served at the Gurudwara. We all make semolina or sooji halwa at home but it doesn’t taste as good as the one made in the Gurudwaras.  I remember whenever we’d travel down from Nairobi to Makindu Gurudwara on Sundays, I’d want a generous helping of the prasad. Not that the makhani dal and hot rotis were not delicious.

Punjabis are well known for feeding their guests excessively. My dad’s friend use to be like that. He’d keep on filling our plates event hough we’d protest and say we’re full. His reply always would be “young people need to grow so eat on, eat on”. If only he could see me now 😉 he’d definitely recommend that I go on a diet.

When Punjabi Cuisine was announced on our Shhh Cooking Secretly group, I didn’t want to miss this famous cuisine and thought that by hook or crook will make something. Thankfully, I managed. I’m in Florida right now and my sister in law requested that I make something ‘nice’ for my nephew. Makhani Paneer it was and she had all the ingredients at hand. My partner Priya who blogs at The World Through My Eyes, gave me paneer and tomato as my secret ingredients. The tussle was between paneer tikka and makhani paneer. You’ve got to check out Priya’s blog for some good recipes and what I like most is when she writes about places, restaurants and product reviews. I gave Priya Cream and Kashmiri chili powder as her secret ingredients. She made delicious creamy Dal Makhani with those ingredients.

paneer makhani 3

paneer makhani 2

paneer makhani 1


Serves 6

500g paneer, cut into cubes

1½ cup chopped onion

10-12 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped

1 inch ginger piece, chopped

2-3 green chilis, chopped

3 medium tomatoes, finely chopped

4 tbsp butter

1 tbsp oil

1 inch cinnamon stick

6-8 cloves

10-12 peppercorns

1 tsp cumin seeds (jeera)

1 tsp mustard seeds (rai)

1½ tsp salt

½ tsp turmeric powder (haldi)

½ tsp red chilli powder

1 tsp coriander powder

½ tsp cumin powder

½ tsp cardamom powder

1 tbsp kasuri methi

¼ cup cashew nut powder

½ cup fresh cream

1- 1½ cup water

2-3 tbsp chopped fresh coriander

  1. Heat oil and butter in a wide pan over medium heat.
  2. Add the paneer cubes, make a single layer and let the paneer cook on one side till it becomes light golden in colour.
  3. Flip each piece over and cook till it becomes light golden in colour. Remove the paneer using a slotted spoon from the pan and keep it on the side. Make sure you don’t remove the melted butter and oil.
  4. In the same pan add cinnamon, cloves, peppercorn. As soon as they begin to sizzle, add mustard and cumin seeds.
  5. When the mustard seeds begin to pop, add the chopped onions.
  6. Stir fry the onion till it becomes light brown.
  7. Add garlic, ginger and chilis. Stir fry for 30 seconds.
  8. Add kasuri methi, turmeric and chili powder.
  9. Mix well and add the chopped tomatoes.
  10. Lower the heat and let the tomatoes cook till they become soft and mushy.
  11. Take the pan off the heat.
  12. Transfer the onion tomato mixture into a blender. Add water and blend to a smooth paste.
  13. Put the pan over low heat. Add the cashew nut powder and stir fry it for a few seconds.
  14. Add the pureed gravy and mix well.
  15.  Add salt, cardamom, cumin and coriander powders. Mix well.
  16. Let the gravy cook till it becomes  thick. Make sure you stir it occasionally so that it does not stick to the bottom of the pan.
  17. Add the paneer and cream. Mix well gently.
  18. Let it simmer for a further 5 minutes over low heat. If it becomes too thick at a little bit more water.
  19. Add chopped coriander and serve it with your favorite naan, roti or paratha. We enjoyed it with hot rotis.


  • You can use the cubed paneer without cooking or frying it.
  • If you buy readymade paneer and its a bit hard, soften it a bit by soaking it in hot water for 15-20 minutes.
  • I used cream to make the gravy thick and creamy, you may skip the cream all together or use less of it.
  • Though the ingredient list seems lengthy, its quite easy to make the curry.
  • If you use garam masala then you can omit cloves, cinnamon, pepper, cardamom.

Pin for Later:

paneer makhani pin

A little request:

If you do try this recipe then please either

  • add a comment below,
  • send a picture to my email
  •  tag me as #mayuri_jikoni on Instagram
  • or tag me on Twitter as #Mayuri1962

You may want to check out the following recipes:

Punjabi Vadiya Da Pulav

Baked Punjabi Samosa

Makki di Roti

Paneer Kulcha

Sharing this recipe with the following event:


Shhh Cooking Secretly a group started by Priya of Priya’s Versatile Recipes,  is where every month food bloggers are paired up and give each other 2 secret ingredients to cook with according to the theme chosen. If you’re interested in joining this exciting group then please leave a message in the comment section. Thank you.



  • The Girl Next Door

    July 1, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    Oh, Paneer Butter Masala looks absolutely scrumptious! I would love to dig into that bowl right away. 🙂

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 3, 2019 at 7:00 am

      Thanks Priya.

  • namscorner18

    July 4, 2019 at 9:37 pm

    Paneer Butter masala looks so tempting and delicious Mayuri.. Can I grab that bowl?

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 4, 2019 at 10:44 pm

      Thank you so much Narmadha, wish I could have shared it with you 🙂

  • simplysensationalfood

    July 5, 2019 at 1:03 am

    This is such a popular recipe in the restaurants in the UK. I love your version it looks so creamy and delicious .

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 6, 2019 at 4:13 am

      Thanks Nayna, it certainly is a popular dish in most restaurants in and outside India.

  • chefmireille

    July 5, 2019 at 3:44 am

    as much as I love paneer, this is one of the classic Punjabi dishes on every restaurant menu I am yet to try. Now you are inspiring me to make it soon!

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 6, 2019 at 4:13 am

      Thanks Mireille, please do try it. Its one of my favorite Punjabi dishes.

  • shobhakeshwani

    July 6, 2019 at 1:41 am

    Paneer looks so delicious.. love the gravy. It pairs well with naans. My kids love the combo.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 6, 2019 at 4:11 am

      Thank you so much Shobha.

  • sizzlingtastebuds

    July 6, 2019 at 1:34 pm

    oh yes, you had me at Kadha Prashad there, Mayuri ! such simple ingredients, but the result is so divine and delicious. Just like this creamy Paneer Makhani… My kids love this but I don’t indulge them often. Will try your true-punjabi version sometime soon !

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:58 am

      Thanks Kalyani, I too don’t make it often as rich but yes its a treat when I have guests over.

  • Batter Up With Sujata

    July 9, 2019 at 12:03 pm

    Paneer butter masala looks lip-smackingly delicious. Perfect side dish for sudden guests or party. Loved the rich creamy texture

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:55 am

      Thanks Sujata.

  • Ashima

    July 9, 2019 at 11:17 pm

    This looks so tempting Mayuri! Love the color and the creamy texture that is so visible in the image itself! Butter, oil, cashew, cream – you left no stone unturned ;-D

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:54 am

      Thanks Ashima, was feeding wedding guests so yes, left no stone unturned 🙂

  • poonampagar

    July 11, 2019 at 7:14 am

    This paneer curry has to be on my menu when ever I have guest over dinner. I do not fry the paneer cubes though. Next time will try your recipe.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:52 am

      Thanks Poonam, usually I don’t fry them but this time did as that’s the way the family wanted them.

  • Poonam bachhav

    July 15, 2019 at 11:58 am

    Such a creamy rich paneer butter masala ! Love it with hot phulka. This is one of our favourite paneer dishes.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:49 am

      Thanks Poonam, I simply love the actual creamy rich buttery paneer masala.

  • Vasusvegkitchen

    July 15, 2019 at 9:00 pm

    Paneer butter masala is my all time favorite recipe. The gravy looks very creamy, rich and delicious. And the panner cooked in that gravy would definetly taste yummy 😋.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:48 am

      Thanks Aruna, paneer makhani is one of my favourite curry.

  • Sujata Shukla

    July 17, 2019 at 10:52 am

    I have some fresh (non processed) paneer and have been wondering which dish to use it for. The paneer butter masala seems the perfect fit. The texture, colour, look so good too. I have a cashew allergy though – what would be a good substitute? Almonds maybe?

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 19, 2019 at 9:46 am

      Thanks Sujata any other nuts or without nuts too it would turn out fine as the onions help to thicken the gravy.

  • jayashreetrao

    July 19, 2019 at 10:59 am

    Panner makhani looks so creamy and delicious, there is nothing like it with a few hot phulkas.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 23, 2019 at 10:54 am

      That’s true Jayashree hot phulkas and a creamy curry.

  • firsttimercook

    July 22, 2019 at 3:23 pm

    The curry looks really so creamy and delicious di ! For paneer lovers this is a huge hit for sure 🙂 Awesome share ….

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 23, 2019 at 10:52 am

      Thanks Sasmita.

    2. Priya

      July 23, 2019 at 8:40 pm

      Just give me a bowl of this sabzi and butter roti and i am happy. You sabzi has come out amazing, totally drooling all over the picture

      1. mayurisjikoni

        July 24, 2019 at 6:12 am

        Thank you so much Priya.

  • Renu Agrawal Dongre

    July 26, 2019 at 4:35 pm

    The paneer makhani looks very rich and creamy. Love the beautiful color of the dish. Perfect with some hot roti’s

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 28, 2019 at 6:02 pm

      Definitely delicious with hot rotis..thanks Renu.

  • Pavani

    July 26, 2019 at 10:28 pm

    OMG! Paneer makhani looks so rich ,creamy and simply love the colour of the curry. Definitely going to try this version soon.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 28, 2019 at 6:01 pm

      Thanks Pavani, rich it definitely is. Please do try it.

  • Mildlyindian (@mildlyindian)

    July 28, 2019 at 1:06 pm

    That sabji is all I need for the whole life… pass me that roti and see me smile.

    1. mayurisjikoni

      July 28, 2019 at 5:57 pm

      Pretty soon you’ll be writing poems Seema, thank you so much 🙂

  • Veena Krishnakumar

    July 31, 2019 at 2:19 pm

    Panner butter masala is my daughters favourite. Go to any restuarant and this is the first dish that she will pick up. Your paneer butter masala looks so rich and creamy

    1. mayurisjikoni

      August 3, 2019 at 10:17 am

      🙂 that’s what I pick too or if not that then tawa paneer. Thanks Veena.

  • Jessica Fourie

    November 11, 2019 at 8:52 am

    If you are preparing for a lavish vegetarian meal, Paneer Makhani has to be on the menu. I am going to try your recipe as well. Last week I tried a recipe shared by my friend for Paneer Mutter and it was awesome. Hope this too turns out to be a hot favourite. Keep sharing such posts! Visit –

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