Simple Indian Recipes...
Delicious and healthy dishes that can be made even by first timers.

Paneer Butter Masala

 Published 2009-Mar-10   Updated 2017-May-07

- Submitted by Dahlia

(Paneer Makhani, Paneer Makhanwala, Indian Cheese Curry, Paneer Kurma)

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Paneer Butter Masala is also known as Punjabi Paneer Makhani or Paneer Makhanwala is a Punjabi dish which is in high demand in Indian restaurants all over the world. Indian cottage cheese is also known as paneer. In this dish, paneer is cooked in the silky, creamy makhani sauce. This sauce is made with a blend of tomatoes, cashews and cream.

The creaminess of the gravy makes it very tasty. Kids and adults just love it. In my house, I make it at least twice a month. It is a very good combination with butter naan. At home, you can also serve it with any type of pulao or roti. Whenever vegetarians come home for a meal, this dish would be my first choice as it is always a hit with everyone.

When you buy Paneer Makhani at restaurants, it comes in a bright red color. Most restaurants add red food color to give that bright color. At home I do not prefer to add any color. It is only the natural color that comes from the Kashmiri red chili powder and the tomatoes. The color really doesn't matter because once you taste the dish you don't need any artificial colors to make it look attractive.

Do try out the recipe and leave your comments. I have simplified the whole process so that anyone can make it even on busy week days.

Video Instructions For Paneer Makhani

Recipe for Paneer Butter Masala

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes
Serves: 4


  • Paneer - about 200 gms
  • Onion - 1 big
  • Ginger - 1 tbsp (chopped)
  • Garlic - 1 tbsp (chopped)
  • Tomato - 3 
  • Cashew nuts - 1/4 cup
  • Kashmiri Red Chili Powder - 2 tsp (or to taste)
  • Coriander Powder - 1 tsp
  • Garam Masala Powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Turmeric Powder - 1/4 tsp
  • Kasoori Methi (Dry Fenugreek Leaves) - 1 tsp
  • Butter - 3 tbsp
  • Orange-red food colour - 1/4 tsp (optional)
  • Salt - to taste
  • Heavy Cream (Fresh Cream) - 1/4 cup
  • Cilantro - for garnish (finely chopped)


  1. Heat the butter in a pan/ kadai, and add the roughly chopped onions, ginger and garlic.
  2. Next add the chopped tomatoes. 
  3. Also add some cashew nuts and 1-2 tbsp of water. Saute this for couple of minutes.
  4. Cover and cook until everything becomes tender.
  5. Switch off, let it cool completely and then puree the mixture. This is the basic makhani sauce. I usually prefer to pass this sauce through a strainer to have a smooth gravy.
  6. In a different pan, melt some butter. Add the red chili powder to the butter and fry for about 10 seconds. Adding the chili powder to the butter directly gives a bright color to the gravy. You do not have to add any additional food color.
  7. Add the prepared makhani sauce. Add additional water if needed. Bring it to a boil.
  8. Add the paneer cubes. Also add the turmeric powder, coriander powder and required salt.
  9. Reduce the flame and let the mixture cook for 5 minutes.
  10. Add the fresh cream to the curry. Add some garam masala powder.
  11. Rub the fenugreek leaves between your palm and add it to the curry. Let the whole gravy cook for another 5 minutes till all the flavours blend together.
  12. Garnish with finely chopped cilantro or fresh cream.


  • You can fry the paneer cubes before adding to the gravy.
  • To reduce the calories, you could add evaporated milk or fat free half and half or fat free milk instead of heavy cream. In that case do not add water.

Serving Paneer Butter Masala

Paneer Butter Masala

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Comments (24)

Person   ()
This was SO helpful! Indian food is my favorite cuisine and as a vegetarian of 20 years, I really appreciate this recipe and the video was so great!! Thank you so much!!!!
Person   ()
Thank you so much for the compliments.
Person   ()
I am preparing this dish now with knol khol.....Very easy recipe
Person   ()
Thats a new variation I have never heard of..
Person   ()
its a nice recepie and it tastes very good.
Person   ()
good to hear that anu...
Person   ()
WOW...AWESOME...everybody liked this recipe.
Person   ()
That great to hear veena.
Person   ()
I tried the paneer recepi at my room. And my roomate also ate it. Its toooo gooooooood........
Person   ()
Good to hear that...
Person   ()
Nice recipe.......
Person   ()
Thanks :-)
Person   ()
I tried it and it was tasty...... thanks...
Person   ()
Great!! Thank you...
Person   ()
I try to make this pneer recipe an it,s nice I lov it...thx a lot for sharing the recipe couse it really helpfull.thx.......:-)
Person   ()
Thank you. I am glad you liked it.
Person   ()
I am not Indian, but I do love the Indian cuisine. I am learning to cook Indian food (and all foods, I was never very into cooking) and this one is, by far, my favorite recipe! Thank you so much for posting the recipes in English, so it is accessible to everyone.
Person   ()
That's great to hear. Its always good to learn cooking. You feel satisfied to know what goes into your food. Try out the other recipes one by one. Don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions.
Person   ()
This is my favourite paneer recipe:) thankyou for sharing it:)
Person   ()
Thats nice to hear.
Person   ()
I made it at home and everybody loved it and said it taste just like we get in restraurants... thankyou so much and please put up some more recipes :) keep up the good work
Person   ()
Thanks for your encouraging words.
Person   ()
I tried it and was verrrrry tasty.
Person   ()
Thank you for trying and posting your comments.

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 Published by on and last updated on 2017-05-07.