Paneer Makhani: A Rich and Creamy Delight

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  • 2 tsp butter
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 tomatoes, chopped (or use a 400g can of chopped tomatoes)
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 6-7 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
  • 4-5 cardamom pods, roughly bashed
  • 1 small cinnamon stick
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 4 cashew nuts, finely chopped and soaked in water until soft
  • 1cm piece of ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1 tsp red chili powder
  • 1 chili, sliced in half lengthways (optional)
  • 250g paneer, cut into medium cubes
  • 1 tbsp fenugreek leaves
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 80ml single cream, to serve (optional)


STEP 1: Cook the Base Sauce

Melt 1 tsp butter and 1 tbsp oil in a non-stick pan over low-medium heat until sizzling. Be careful not to let the butter burn.

Add the chopped tomatoes, tomato purée, garlic, cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Cover with a lid and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After 10 minutes, remove from heat and let it cool. Once cooled, remove the bay leaf, cinnamon stick, and cardamom pods.

STEP 2: Blend to a Paste

Place the cooled tomato mixture and the soaked cashew nuts into a blender.

Blitz to a smooth paste and set aside.

STEP 3: Cook the Ginger and Chili

Return the pan to medium heat and add the remaining butter and oil.

Cook the grated ginger for a minute, then reduce the heat to low.

Add the red chili powder and stir for 2 minutes.

STEP 4: Combine and Cook

Add the tomato and cashew paste to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes.

Add the sliced chili (if using), 1½ tsp sugar, and paneer cubes. Mix well and cook for a few more minutes.

Add the fenugreek leaves and garam masala. Mix well.

Stir in up to 100ml water to loosen the sauce if needed.

Remove from heat and swirl in the single cream (if using).

Serve this luxurious Paneer Makhani hot, garnished with a swirl of cream and a sprinkle of fresh fenugreek leaves. Pair it with naan or basmati rice for an indulgent, restaurant-quality meal at home. Enjoy the rich, creamy flavors and aromatic spices that make this dish a beloved classic in Indian cuisine!

Nethmi Rodrigo

Nethmi Rodrigo

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