Looking to make the best paneer recipe to wow your family and friends, then you need to try this easy paneer makhani recipe restaurant-style that gets done in just 10 mins on the stovetop & 5 mins in an Instant pot. I have made this by using the homemade, ready to use, creamy & silky smooth makhani gravy that can be stored for up to 10 days.
Paneer Makhani is an easy paneer recipe from the Punjab region of India. It is a tomato-based gravy dish that is served as a side dish with flatbreads and rice recipes like pulaos and biryanis.
What makes this paneer makhani, restaurant-style is that both the makhani gravy and the paneer makhani using that gravy are made just like the chefs cook it in Restaurants and Hotels.
In restaurants, the chefs prepare the makhani gravy and keep it on hand as a meal prep to save time and cook fast.
As and when the orders come in, they toss the cubed paneer cubes along with spices to cook in the prepared makhani gravy and voilà! Easy Paneer makhani is ready in no time. It’s that easy and simple.
And guess what, it takes just 10 mins to get done when you cook it on the stovetop and just 5 mins should you choose the Instant Pot.
Table of Contents:
Paneer: It is also called cottage cheese, and you can use either homemade paneer or store-bought ones. You can also use malai paneer to make this Punjabi Paneer dish.
Makhani Gravy: I usually make this silky gravy during the weekends and have it on hand. Having a bottle of this gravy sitting in the fridge makes it easy on the busy weekdays to have a side dish ready in under 10 mins.
Tempering: I have used cumin seeds, ginger garlic paste and green chillies
Spice powders: You will need red chilli powder, cumin powder and garam masala powder
Taste enhancers: unsalted butter, kasuri methi and fresh cream.
Other Ingredients: salt to taste and oil to cook.
Please refer to the recipe card for the correct measurement of ingredients.
How to make Paneer Makhani
1. Heat a pan with oil. Add cumin seeds, ginger garlic paste and green chillies.
2. Stir well and cook over low flame till the raw smell of the paste goes off.
3. Add makhani gravy, red chilli powder and salt to the pan. Mix well to combine.
4. Add paneer cubes, mix well and cook over low flame.
5. Now add kasuri methi and butter and mix well.
6. Add garam masala powder and cumin powder. Mix well to combine.
7. Add fresh cream and stir gently. Take a taste test and add more salt if needed.
8. Cook for 1 more min and switch off the stove.
Garnish Paneer Makhani with dollops of fresh cream and serve hot.
Instant Pot Paneer Makhani
Start the Instant Pot in ‘Sauté’ mode. Add oil, and cumin seeds and let it sizzle.
Now add ginger-garlic paste, and green chillies and sauté for 1 min.
Tip in the makhani gravy, red chilli powder, cumin powder, garam masala powder, paneer, and salt. Stir well.
Close with lid, ensuring the steam release handle is in the ‘sealing’ position.
Cancel the ‘sauté’ function and press the ‘pressure cook’ function. Set the cooking time for 3 mins, heat at normal and pressure cook level to ‘High’
Once the cooking cycle ends, do a manual pressure release by flipping the steam release handle from ‘sealing’ to ‘venting’ position and open the lid.
Press the sauté function for 1 min. Add butter, kasuri methi and fresh cream and stir well.
Instant Pot Paneer Makhani is ready to be served.
Do not cook the gravy for a long time after adding fresh cream because sometimes the cream may split.
Cooking the gravy for a longer time also changes the texture of the soft paneer to become chewy and hard.
If the gravy seems to be thick, then you can adjust the consistency by adding milk instead of fresh cream. But avoid adding water.
This recipe is
- Low Carb
If you want to make this a low-calorie gravy, then use toned milk or homemade malai in the place of fresh cream.
You can also skip the butter if you wish and do not want the gravy to be so rich in taste.
You can add tofu or baked cauliflower florets in the place of paneer.
Try this Mushroom Peas Makhani which tastes equally delicious.
For the best paneer makhani, you need to consume it on the same day it is cooked.
In case you had doubled or tripled the recipe and have leftovers, then store it in the refrigerator and finish it off in the next 2 days.
It would have thickened considerably after cooking, so thaw it a little, and add a little water or milk to adjust the consistency.
Microwave it for 1 min or heat it over a low flame on the stove before serving.
More ways to use Paneer Makhani
You do not have to stick to serving paneer makhani as a side dish alone, there are other ways in which you can use the actual recipe or the leftovers.
Paneer Makhani Dosa:
Spread the dosa batter as you would regularly do into a disc on the hot tawa.
When it is almost half cooked, spread a liberal dose of the paneer makhani gravy on top and arrange the paneer cubes. Sprinkle some cheese on top if you prefer.
Fold the dosa into 2 and let it cook over low flame for 20 to 30 secs for the cheese to melt slightly.
Remove onto a plate and serve the paneer makhani dosa piping hot.
Paneer Makhani Pizza:
Take either store-bought or homemade pizza base. Spread the makhani gravy all over the top. Arrange the paneer cubes, bell peppers, sweet corn, and mushrooms. Sprinkle liberally with red chilli flakes and grated cheese on top.
Bake for 12 to 15 mins at 180 C till the crust becomes golden brown and the cheese on top melts and becomes gooey and bubbly.
Remove, cut into wedges and serve this paneer makhani pizza with ketchup.
Paneer Makhani Biryani:
Cook basmati rice till it is 75% done. Drain the excess water. Grease a thick bottomed pan with oil.
Alternate layers of basmati rice and paneer makhani finishing with basmati rice on top. Sprinkle some saffron soaked milk.
Close with a tight-fitting lid. Place a heavy object on top of the lid.
Cook over low flame for 20 mins. Switch off the stove and let it rest for another 15 mins.
Open the lid, sprinkle roasted cashews, and fried onions aka birista. Gently mix for the layers to combine. Check this Veg Dum Biryani to get an idea.
Serve this paneer makhani biryani piping hot with raita.
Paneer Makhani Pasta:
Toss in cooked pasta of your choice in makhani gravy, add in grilled paneer cubes, veggies, and some cooked pasta water to make it saucy, sprinkle some Italian herbs and serve hot with some grated cheese on top.
It is a mildly spiced gravy recipe. But if you are still not convinced, then add kashmiri chilli powder in the place of red chilli powder to make the gravy less spicy.
While the paneer makhani ingredients list may look similar to that of paneer butter masala, I have made both the recipes to be done in under 15 mins.
For this easy paneer makhani, I have used pre-cooked makhani gravy, that is ready to use, store and use when needed.
And I have made the paneer butter masala in the pressure cooker as a one-dish recipe that saves a lot of time while not compromising on the taste.
We have added cream to the paneer makhni, it will not fare well when you freeze it.
The paneer cubes will also turn rubbery in texture, which will not be palatable while eating even after you thaw it to room temperature.
So while you can refrigerate it, do not freeze it.
You can also serve this with
Ghee rice - Basmati rice cooked with aromatic whole spices in ghee.
Jeera rice - Also known as Indian Cumin Rice, happens to be an everyday lunch recipe across households.
Vegetable pulao - A simple lunch box recipe that is also perfect for get-togethers and pot lucks.
Peas pulao - Simple, quick and flavourful one-pot meal made with either fresh or frozen peas.
Aloo Gobhi pulao - Another flavourful one-pot meal cooked with chunky potatoes and cauliflower florets with spices.
See more Side Dish Recipes for Roti
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Easy Paneer Makhani
- 100 gms paneer or cottage cheese cubed
- 1 cup makhani gravy
- ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
- 2 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
- 3 green chillies slit lengthwise
- 1 teaspoon red chilli powder
- 2 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon kasuri methi or dried fenugreek leaves
- ½ teaspoon garam masala powder
- ½ teaspoon cumin powder
- ⅓ cup fresh cream
- salt to taste
- 2 tablespoon oil
- Heat oil in a pan. Add oil and when hot add cumin seeds and let it sizzle.
- Add ginger-garlic paste and green chillies.
- Stir well and cook for 1 to 2 mins over low flame till the raw smell of the paste goes off.
- Add makhani gravy, red chilli powder and salt to the pan. Note that the makhani gravy already has salt in it. So add a little at this stage, and you can add later on after a taste test.
- Mix well for the gravy to combine well with the tempering.
- Add paneer cubes, mix well and cook for 4 to 5 mins over low flame.
- Now add kasuri methi and butter. Mix well and cook for 1 minute.
- Add garam masala powder and cumin powder. Mix well to combine.
- Add fresh cream and stir gently. Take a taste test and add more salt if needed.
- Cook for 1 more min and switch off the stove.
- Garnish Paneer Makhani with dollops of fresh cream and serve hot.
Instant Pot Paneer Makhani
- Start the Instant Pot in ‘Sauté’ mode. Add oil, and cumin seeds and let it sizzle.
- Add ginger-garlic paste, and green chillies and sauté for 1 min.
- Add makhani gravy, red chilli powder, cumin powder, garam masala powder, paneer, and salt. Stir well.
- Close with lid, ensuring the steam release handle is in the ‘sealing’ position.
- Cancel the ‘sauté’ function and press the ‘pressure cook’ function. Set the cooking time for 3 mins, heat at 'normal' and pressure cook level to ‘High’
- Once the cooking cycle ends, do a manual pressure release by flipping the steam release handle from ‘sealing’ to ‘venting’ position and open the lid.
- Press the 'sauté' function for 1 min. Add butter, kasuri methi and fresh cream and stir well.
- Serve this instant pot paneer makhani hot with naan, roti or pulao.
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