It’s easy to transform a block of paneer into a tasty, healthy and satisfying dinner! These recipes range from curry house favorites made easy, to fusion concepts you’ve never considered before. Paneer cheese makes it so easy to eat vegetarian… prepare to fall in love with it!
When you have a block of paneer to hand, you’re well on your way to a tasty meatless dinner. This versatile cheese is perfectly at home in the Indian cuisine it originates from, but is also happy to find its way into other genres.
Paneer stands in well for meat, providing not just a protein source but a luxurious texture to the meal that won’t let you feel like you’re missing out. It’s easy to cook, easy to love. I’ve rounded up several ideas – some more traditional, some not at all – for how you can enjoy this cheese on a busy evening!
What is Paneer?
Paneer is an Indian cheese which, like my beloved halloumi, doesn’t melt and can be grilled, fried and enjoyed as a substantial protein in a meal. Paneer is often found lightly fried and added to curries, or grilled on skewers, and it’s just a dream. It differs from halloumi in that it’s softer, less salty, and has a milkyness to it that contrasts perfectly with strong or spicy flavors. You can’t not like paneer, guys.
There are some differences across different brands. Fresh paneer can be crumbly and delicate – delicious but potentially be harder to cook. Firmer paneer is more robust with more bite – also delicious but can err towards rubbery if it’s not great quality. Try all that you can and find your favorite!
Where can I find it?
In the UK, it is generally available in supermarkets. Here are my thoughts:
I personally enjoy Everest brand (firm and easy to work with, not at all rubbery) which is carried by Waitrose, Ocado and Marks & Spencer.
I find the slightly softer, crumblier Apetina delicious for curries but it can be harder to work with – it’s stocked by Sainsbury’s and across Europe.
I don’t recommend Tesco’s own brand which is bland and rubbery.
There are brands of paneer stocked in supermarkets all over Europe, the USA & Canada, Australia & New Zealand. While I can’t speak for the rest of the world’s supermarkets, I would always recommend trying an Indian market if you can’t find it in your usual stores. Failing that, you could even ask an Indian restaurant to sell you some. It’s really worth tracking down!
21 Easy Paneer Recipes
It's easy to transform a block of paneer into a tasty, healthy and satisfying dinner! These recipes range from curry house favorites made easy, to fusion concepts you've never considered before. Paneer cheese makes it so easy to eat vegetarian... prepare to fall in love with it!
Fresh cherry tomatoes give this spin on palak paneer (saag paneer) a sweet and juicy finish. With fresh spinach and no cream, it's a nutritious, light and vibrant dinner that will get everyone loving their greens.
This simple, quick and healthy vegetarian kale curry recipe is perfect for busy weeknights! Kale tastes amazing in place of spinach for a palak paneer style dish full of sweet, aromatic spices and creamy coconut milk.
An easy one pan sweet potato tikka masala style curry made entirely in the oven with paneer and other veggies! So creamy and comforting, this recipe is easy to make and can be adapted to the contents of your fridge.
This punjabi restaurant style shahi paneer is a delicious way to introduce more vegetarian meals into your weekly rotation. With a few easy shortcuts, this shahi paneer recipe comes together in 30 minutes. This recipe is short on time, but not short on flavor!
Paneer Jalfrezi is a delicious stir-fry curry that has the heavenly combination of paneer with peppers. This vegetarian restaurant style dish can be made within 20 minutes and is a perfect accompaniment for naan.
As easy and delicious vegetarian traybake / sheet pan meal with teriyaki paneer and caramelized pineapple. It comes together easily in one pan with very few ingredients, just put it in the oven and let the magic happen! Pair with coconut rice for an incredibly tasty fusion dinner.
This Hakka restaurant style chilli paneer is a quick and easy vegetarian meal idea. Packed with a sweet, tangy and spicy sauce with crisp peppers and onions, this is a fantastic way to encourage meatless meals in your home, and it's ready in 20 minutes!
This easy Vegetarian Paneer Fajita Traybake is a vibrant midweek meal you can prepare in advance. Serve the sizzling paneer with tortillas, guacamole, salsa and sour cream for a Mexican-inspired feast.
Quick and easy oven roasted BBQ paneer tacos! The Indian cheese paneer makes for an amazing meatless taco filling, roasting beautifully in the oven in a BBQ taco glaze, then topped with an avocado mango salsa. This delicious and unusual fusion meal comes together in just 30 minutes.
You will love these stir fried singapore style noodles with paneer cheese! This is a healthy 30 minute recipe that is packed with veggies, protein and amazing flavor! Paneer makes a delicious alternative to tofu or faux meat. Ready in 30 minutes.
Spiced Paneer Wraps with coriander yoghurt and mango chutney. Cubes of paneer marinated in tikka masala paste then fried until crispy. Served in a flour tortilla with crispy salad, mango chutney and yoghurt. Great for a tasty lunch!
Popular Indian street-food, Paneer Kathi rolls are warm, layered parathas filled with spicy paneer, mixed peppers and sweet caramelized onions. Whether you make it for a quick weeknight meal or a leisurely gathering, these kathi rolls are sure to be a hit!
Air fryer owners take note - this creamy paneer curry for two is made entirely in the air fryer! Crispy paneer is drenched in a sweet, mild cream sauce. This is a base recipe with lots and lots of variations to try to suit your own tastes and the contents of your fridge!