Palak paneer (spinach and Indian cottage cheese)

palak paneer

Palak paneer is a classic vegetarian dish hailing from North Indian cuisine, loved for its vibrant flavors and wholesome ingredients. “Palak” translates to spinach, and “paneer” refers to Indian cottage cheese. The dish is a harmonious combination of these two key components.

To prepare palak paneer, fresh spinach leaves are blanched and pureed, creating a vibrant green base. Cubes of paneer are lightly fried until golden and then simmered in the luscious spinach gravy. The addition of aromatic spices such as cumin, coriander, and garam masala elevates the dish, infusing it with a rich and fragrant character.

Palak paneer is not only a treat for the taste buds but also a nutritious choice, packed with the goodness of spinach and protein from paneer. It is commonly served with Indian bread like naan or roti, making it a wholesome and satisfying meal for vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. The creamy texture of the paneer against the earthy spinach backdrop creates a delightful culinary experience that has made palak paneer a beloved classic in Indian cuisine.

Palak paneer

Classic vegetarian dish from North Indian cuisine, loved for its vibrant flavors and wholesome ingredients.
Prep20 minutes
Cook15 minutes
Total Time35 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: paneer, spinach, vegan
Servings: 4
Calories: 292kcal


  • 2 bunches of fresh spinach about 500g, washed and chopped (use frozen spinach if preferred)
  • 200 g paneer cubed
  • 1 large onion finely chopped (use green tops of spring onion for low FODMAP)
  • 2 tomatoes chopped
  • 2 green chilies chopped (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons garlic infused oil
  • 1 inch ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chili powder adjust to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Indian ghee or olive oil
  • salt to taste
  • water as needed


  • Blanch the spinach: Boil water in a pot, add spinach, and blanch for 2-3 minutes. Drain and immediately transfer the spinach to ice-cold water. This helps retain the vibrant green color. Blend the blanched spinach into a smooth puree.
  • Heat ghee or oil in a pan over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and let them splutter.
  • Add chopped onions (or spring onion green tops if using) and sauté until golden brown.
  • Add garlic infused oil, grated ginger and chopped green chilies. Sauté for 1-2 minutes until the raw smell disappears.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and cook until they become soft and the oil starts to separate.
  • Stir in coriander powder, turmeric powder, and red chili powder. Cook for a minute to let the spices release their flavors.
  • Add the spinach puree and mix well. Cook for 5-7 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add paneer cubes and salt. Mix gently, allowing the paneer to absorb the flavors.
  • Simmer for an additional 5 minutes until the curry reaches the desired consistency. Adjust the seasoning if needed. Serve the Palak Paneer hot with naan, roti, or rice.


Nutrition: Carbohydrates:8g; Protein:17g; Fat:19g; Saturated Fat:3g; Sodium:301mg; Fiber:2g

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