paneer makhanwala
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4.86 from 35 votes

paneer makhanwala

Paneer makhanwala is a popular indian curry of cottage cheese cubes in a rich buttery creamy makhani gravy.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: main course
Cuisine: indian
Servings: 4 to 5
Author: Dassana Amit


For ground makhani paste

  • 1 Medium to large onion OR 80 grams onions OR ¾ cup roughly chopped onions
  • 3 to 4 Medium tomatoes OR 160 to 170 grams tomatoes OR 1.5 cups roughly chopped tomatoes
  • ½ inch Ginger - chopped
  • 3 to 4 Medium garlic - chopped
  • 2 Single strands of mace
  • 2 to 3 Green cardamoms
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 2 to 3 Cloves
  • 2 tablespoon Whole cashews OR about 10 to 12 cashews
  • 1 cup Water

Other ingredients

  • 250 to 300 grams Paneer - cut into cubes or squares (cottage cheese)
  • 1 to 1.5 teaspoon Kashmir red chili powder Or deghi mirch (if using a hot variety of red chili powder, then add ½ to ¾ teaspoon)
  • ¼ cup Low fat cream (i used amul cream)
  • 1 Tej patta (indian bay leaf)
  • 1 Green chili - slit
  • 1.5 cups Water Or as required
  • ¾ teaspoon Kasuri methi - crushed (dry fenugreek leaves)
  • ¼ teaspoon Garam masala powder
  • ½ teaspoon Sugar OR 1 teaspoon honey - or add as required as per your taste
  • 2 to 2.5 tablespoon Butter at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Cream for garnishing
  • 1 tablespoon Grated paneer for garnishing (optional)
  • ½ inch Ginger - julienne
  • Salt as required
  • Few chopped coriander leaves for garnish (cilantro leaves)


making makhani paste

  • First mix chopped onions, tomatoes, ginger, garlic, cashews, mace, cinnamon, cloves and cardamoms with 1 cup water.
  • Cook everything til the tomatoes and onions soften without a lid. Cook for about 14 to 15 minutes on a medium flame. Allow this mixture to cool.
  • Then add everything including the stock in a good blender or grinder. Grind to a smooth paste.
  • Remember there should be no small pieces of cashews. Everything should be ground very well till smooth.

making paneer makhanwala

  • Heat butter in the same pan. Add tejpatta (indian bay leaf) and saute for a few seconds.
  • Add the ground makhani paste. Stir well.
  • Sprinkle red chili powder. ( I have used kashmiri red chili powder which gives a good color. You can also use deghi mirch).
  • Stir well and saute the masala on a medium flame.
  • Keep on stirring often. You have to Saute the masala till you see the butter leaving the sides. it has to sauteed so well. This takes time but patience is the key. 
  • Takes about 20 to 22 mins on a medium to high flame. Check the step by step pics (picture no 9) for the consistency of how the masala paste should be before you proceed to the next step.
  • Now add slit green chilies, salt and water. Again stir very well. Cook for 2 to 3 mins.
  • Then add sugar and again stir. If you want to add honey instead of sugar then kindly check the notes section below.
  • Add the paneer cubes and simmer for 2 mins.
  • Add the cream, crushed kasuri methi (dry fenugreek leaves) and garam masala powder.
  • Stir and switch off the flame. Check the taste of gravy and add more salt, sugar or red chili powder as required.
  • Serve paneer makhanwala garnished with cream, grated paneer, ginger julienne, and cilantro leaves, hot with naan or roti.


  • As per ayurveda, honey should not be added to hot drinks or anything hot or heated above 40 degrees C/104 degrees F. The honey becomes toxic.
  • For this paneer makhanwala recipe, you can Let the gravy cool down a bit and then add honey. you can also add sugar instead of honey.