Paneer Butter Masala Recipe

Paneer Butter Masala is one of the most popular Paneer recipes and one of my favourite. It goes very well with Tawa Paratha, Roti, Phulka and Naan. This is the first Paneer recipe on my blog so I am excited to share it with you all. If you are looking for other North Indian Subzi recipes, do check out Aloo Gobi, Bhindi Fry, Mix Veg and Crispy Karela Fry.

paneer butter masala

Paneer, also known as cottage cheese in the west, is very nutritious. It is a good source of Protein, Vitamin B12, Potassium and Selenium and a very good source of Riboflavin, Vitamin D, Calcium and Phosphorus. So make it a part of your diet and stay healthy especially if you are a vegetarian like me.

Paneer Butter Masala
Recipe Type: Main Course
Cuisine: North Indian
Author: Shradha
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 2-3 serves
  • Ingredients:
  • For tomato and cashew nut puree:
  • 3 large sized tomatoes or 4 medium sized tomatoes
  • 18 to 20 cashew nuts
  • ½ cup hot water for soaking the cashew nuts
  • For making Paneer Butter Masala gravy:
  • 200 to 250 grams Paneer (cottage cheese)
  • 1 tbsp oil + 1 to 2 tbsp Butter (salted or unsalted)
  • 1 tej patta (bay leaf)
  • 1 inch ginger (adrak) + 3 to 4 cloves of garlic (lahsun) – crushed in a mortar and pestle
  • 1 inch ginger (adrak) – julienned (you may reserve a few for garnishing)
  • 1 or 2 green chillies (hari mirch) – slit (you may reserve a piece or two for garnishing)
  • 1 tsp kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves)
  • ½ tsp red chilli powder
  • ½ to 1 tsp garam masala
  • Salt as per taste
  • ¼ to ½ tsp Sugar – optional (to be used if the tomatoes are sour)
  • 1.5 cups water or as required
  • A few coriander leaves for garnishing

Step by Step instructions to prepare Paneer Butter Masala:

  1. Soak the cashew nuts in hot water for around 30 minutes and grind them together with the tomatoes to make a puree.
  2. Heat oil and butter in a pan on a low flame. Tip: Heating oil and butter together prevents the butter from getting burnt on heating. Note: Do not heat it too much or else the tadka (tempering) will get burnt.
  3. Add bay leaf and saute for 10-15 seconds or till the bay leaf changes colour slightly.
  4. Next add ginger-garlic paste and saute till it becomes light brown in colour.
  5. Add the tomato and cashew nut puree. Cook the puree on medium heat for 6-7 minutes till the water content in it evaporates. Saute continuously.
  6. Add red chilli powder and saute till the mixture starts leaving oil.
  7. Now add water and mix.
  8. We now need to add the slit green chillies and the julienned ginger.
  9. Taste the gravy to decide on the quantity of salt and sugar to be added. Note: If you are using salted butter for tadka then you need to use less salt. Also the use of sugar is optional depending on the sourness of the tomatoes and your taste.
  10. Cook the gravy on a low flame till it gets the desired consistency.
  11. Add paneer cubes and cook for a minute. Tip: If using frozen paneer, take it out of the refrigerator and keep it in water for 15-20 minutes before adding to the gravy so that it becomes soft.
  12. Do not overcook the paneer or else it will start losing its softness.
  13. Crush Kasuri methi by rubbing in the palms and add to the subzi. Also add the garam masala and mix well.
  14. Switch off the gas flame and garnish the subzi with chopped coriander leaves.

Serve the subzi hot with plain paratha, naan, chapati or phulka.

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