Home Food Guide Top 10 Paneer Dishes of All Time In 2024

Top 10 Paneer Dishes of All Time In 2024

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Welcome to the delicious world of paneer dishes! Paneer, also known as Indian cottage cheese, is a non-melting cheese at the heart of many Indian cuisine favourites. It is an excellent source of protein and calcium for vegetarians. It appeals with its soft, chewy texture that absorbs flavours wonderfully. From the street food delights in elaborating restaurant-style servings, paneer’s delectable taste and versatility have cemented their place in the culinary landscape of the Indian subcontinent.

This blog introduces you to a collection of the top 10 paneer dishes that wooed palates in 2024, including homemade ones. These dishes celebrate paneer’s delightful possibilities, present in various forms such as Indian cottage cheese, cooked in endless combinations of spices, presenting a gastronomic treat. Let’s embark on this exciting culinary journey, exploring these flavoursome recipes, secrets to perfect paneer preparation, and more.

Top 10 Paneer Dishes of All Time in 2024

In the vast repertoire of Indian cuisine, paneer dishes stand out for their universal appeal. In 2024, certain paneer recipes emerged as clear favourites among culinary enthusiasts.

Be it the smoky goodness of Paneer Tikka, the rich indulgence of Shahi Paneer, the vibrant Kadai Paneer, the comforting Palak Paneer, the luscious Paneer Butter Masala, the fiery Chi, home-style paneer bhurji, creamy Malai Kofta, decadent Paneer Pasanda, or the best paneer recipes like Paneer Lababdar, Paneer Sandwich, and other delicious dishes, these 10 dishes have charmed every foodie’s heart and graced numerous dining tables.

This post also includes some easy snacks and popular Indian sweets made with paneer, showcasing its versatility and popularity in Indian cuisine. Whether you’re looking for an easy paneer recipe with gravy, a quick and easy paneer sabzi for paneer lovers, or even a delicious paneer dish like Paneer Tikka Masala for your evening snack, have a look at our selection below and try one today.

Remember to try out the Mattar Paneer recipe with yellow curry. This delicious and unique dish combines the creaminess of paneer with the freshness of green peas.

1. Paneer Tikka

Paneer tikka

Paneer tikka

Undoubtedly, Paneer Tikka tops our chart of the best paneer dishes in 2024.

Paneer Tikka is a beloved dish in Indian cuisine. It is known for its flavorful and aromatic grilled paneer cubes marinated in a blend of yoghurt and spices. This vegetarian delight is often served with mint chutney and fresh lemon wedges, making it a popular appetiser or snack option. Whether enjoyed alone or with naan bread or rice, Paneer Tikka always satisfies taste buds with its smoky, tangy flavours. It’s no wonder why this dish consistently ranks among the top favourites for paneer enthusiasts in Uttar Pradesh and worldwide.

Enjoy Paneer Tikka as an appetiser, or wrap it in butter naan for a different culinary treat. This dish’s vibrant colours, irresistible smoky aroma, and slightly tangy taste make it a favourite among Indian food lovers, leaving them yearning for more.

Know how to make Paneer Tikka at home

2. Shahi Paneer

Shahi paneer

Shahi paneer


Coming in at number two is the decadent Shahi Paneer, a delicacy that undoubtedly lives up to its royal name. ‘Shahi’ translates to ‘royal,’ and this dish has an exquisite taste that signifies just that. The smooth, creamy curry made with Indian curd instead of tomatoes perfectly complements the soft, chewy paneer cubes, offering an explosion of flavours with every spoonful.

This dish typically features a harmonious blend of flavours and textures, combining savoury elements with hints of sweetness or acidity for a well-rounded taste profile.

Pair your Shahi Paneer with fluffy basmati rice or a hot butter naan. You have a meal fit for the kings, leaving you with a delightful lingering sensation on your palate long after eating. This restaurant-style paneer dish is a special treat for any festive or celebratory occasion!

Read the complete recipe of making Shahi paneer

3. Kadai Paneer

Kadai Paneer

Kadai Paneer

When it comes to popular paneer recipes, Kadai Paneer can’t be overlooked. It’s a culinary delight known for its flavoursome gravy, made using freshly pulverised spices known as ‘Kadai Masala’. This dish comes from ‘Kadai’, an Indian wok used for cooking many Indian delicacies.

The heart of Kadai Paneer lies in its robust and aromatic spice blend. This spice mix includes coriander seeds, dried red chillies, cloves, and cumin seeds, all dry-roasted and then ground into a coarse powder.

This freshly prepared masala lends the dish an unmatched depth of flavour.

4. Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer

Palak Paneer, a classic from the Indian culinary repertoire, is the perfect blend of nutrition and taste. This dish combines the creaminess of paneer with the nutritional powerhouse that is spinach (also called palak), creating a robust and palatable curry. The base of the dish starts with blanching fresh spinach leaves, which are then pureed to give the dish its vibrant green colour and underlying spinach flavour. The paneer is then added to the spinach gravy, creating a delicious and colourful dish that is loved by many.

Aromatic spices such as cumin, ginger, garlic, onions, and tomatoes are sautéed together to form the gravy’s underlying base.

Rich in flavour, colour, and aroma, palak paneer makes an exquisite meal when paired with roti, naan, or jeera rice. Whether you’re aiming to include more greens in your diet or simply want a wholesome meal, palak paneer definitely fits the bill with its delicious taste and nutritious profile. It’s a fan favourite and a timeless fixture in Indian cuisine, along with other popular dishes like paneer paratha.

Read how to make Palak Paneer

5. Paneer Butter Masala

Paneer Butter Masala

Paneer Butter Masala

A crown jewel amongst paneer dishes, the Paneer Butter Masala stands out with its rich, buttery gravy, which perfectly complements the soft paneer cubes.

Served with naan or pulao, Paneer Butter Masala is a versatile and popular paneer recipe that can grace your dinner table on any occasion. The craftsmanship in this Indian Cheese delicacy lies in the balance of tangy tomatoes, sweet onions, and spicy notes of ginger and green chillies; all mellowed down with rich and creamy tomato gravy. It’s a celebration of indulgence that leaves your palate longing for more, making it a must-try dish at Indian restaurants and the perfect restaurant-style dish to impress your guests. This dish is often referred to as a vegetarian version of butter chicken. Still, it is much easier to make and equally delicious by adding cashew nuts and kasuri methi. For a complete vegetarian Indian meal, pair it with fluffy Basmati Rice, Butter naan, roti, Jeera rice, or paneer pulao. A lassi on the side with a veggie salad will be great.

 For a twist on this classic dish, try making Paneer Makhani, a delicious and more straightforward version of Paneer Butter Masala that uses a rich and creamy tomato gravy without any onions. It’s a must-try for any paneer lover.

Read how to make Paneer Butter Masala at home

6. Chilli Paneer

Chilli Paneer

Chilli Paneer

A fusion feast, Chilli Paneer combines the best of Indian and Chinese flavour profiles. It features paneer cubes tossed in a tantalising spicy sauce. This Indo-Chinese hybrid has firmly cemented its place in our hearts and on our list of top paneer dishes.

What makes Chilli Paneer irresistible is the combination of a variety of textures. The batter-fried paneer provides a crunch, the cubes inside provide a soft chewiness, and the veggies provide a crispy burst, all tied together by the smooth, spiced gravy.

Chilli Paneer can comfortably fit into any meal plan. You can relish it as a standalone starter or enjoy it as a side, along with veg fried rice or noodles for a complete Indo-Chinese meal.

If you love spice and tanginess, Paneer Chilli, made with hot green chillies and topped with green chutney, is a delicious and satisfying snack option between meals. For a healthier option, try making low-fat Paneer Chilli using low-fat paneer and less oil.

7. Paneer Bhurji

Paneer Bhurji

Paneer Bhurji

Paneer Bhurji is a delightful, easy-to-cook, and delicious recipe offering a unique twist on standard paneer dishes. Its versatile nature allows it to fit in various meals, including breakfast, lunch, or dinner. This dish uses the semi-scrambled or unset form of paneer, showcasing another facet of the versatile paneer. Try layering this flavorful dish with basmati rice for a special occasion to create a mouth-watering Paneer Makhni Biryani.

The beauty of Paneer Bhurji lies in its simplicity. The chunks of soft paneer crumbles sit beautifully amongst the vibrant set of spices, making it a feast for the eyes and the palate.

Also Read: How To Make Paneer Bhurji at Home

8. Paneer Malai Kofta

Paneer Malai Kofta

Paneer Malai Kofta

Claiming a coveted spot in most restaurant-style paneer dishes and North Indian main courses, Malai Kofta is a treasure trove of flavours.

Put simply, malai kofta is a paneer recipe that involves making fried paneer and potato koftas (balls) that are later added to a velvety, smooth malai gravy.

The creaminess of the paneer, the starchiness of the potatoes, and the juiciness of the spices create a harmonious blend of flavours that is a hallmark of this delicious Indian dessert.

The highlight of Malai Kofta lies in its koftas, richly flavoured with cardamom, packed with finely grated paneer, and then deep-fried to a golden brown colour. The dish is often garnished with more malai or cream, enhancing its luxurious feel. Whether it’s a festive occasion, a family dinner, or simply a weekend treat, Malai Kofta is a dish that brings the celebration to the dining table!

9. Paneer Pasanda

Paneer Pasanda

Paneer Pasanda

Another royal delicacy on our list of top paneer dishes is Paneer Pasanda. It’s an exotic paneer dish in which paneer pieces are stuffed with a rich filling, covered in a thick batter, deep-fried until golden, and finally immersed in a velvety gravy.

The ‘pasanda’ in Paneer Pasanda refers to the filled and fried paneer slices that symbolise delicacy in Indian culinary terms. Usually, the filling for the pasanda involves a rich mixture of crumbled or grated paneer, dry fruits, and traditional Indian spices. The slices are then coated with a gram flour batter and deep-fried until crisp and golden.

The outcome is an extravagant paneer recipe where every bite leads to an explosion of flavours. Kakasuri methi, or dried fenugreek leaves, often garnishes the dish, enhancing its authentic taste. Pair it with naan, pulao, or jeera rice; each mouthful would be a gastronomical adventure.

10. Paneer Lababdar

Paneer Lababdar

Paneer Lababdar

One taste of Paneer Lababdar, and you’ll understand why it claimed a spot in our top paneer dishes. This flavourful dish brings a unique twist to regular paneer cuisine, showcasing an exciting blend of tangy and spicy flavours.

This rich and creamy North Indian curry features succulent cubes of paneer cooked in a luscious tomato-based gravy infused with aromatic spices. The gravy’s velvety texture and the paneer’s softness make Paneer Lababdar a truly irresistible dish. Whether enjoyed with roti, naan, or steamed rice, this flavorful dish will tantalise your taste buds and leave you craving more.

Read how to make Paneer Lababdar at home.

Popular Paneer Dishes by Region

The charm of paneer extends across India, with varying recipes making their mark in different regions. Each regional cuisine adds its unique touch, transforming the versatile paneer into mouth-watering dishes. From North Indian favourites like Shahi Paneer and Kadai Paneer, known for their rich, spicy flavours, to exquisite South Indian offerings encompassing fresh spices, herbs, and local flavours, there’s a paneer dish for every regional palate.

Now, let’s dive deeper into the popular paneer dishes hailing from two distinct regions—North India and South India. These include the famous achari paneer from North India and chhena from Eastern India. We will also discuss the unique use of fresh paneer in dishes like achari paneer gravy and the incorporation of Indian pickles in paneer recipes.

North Indian Paneer Dishes

No North Indian feast is complete without at least one paneer dish gracing the table. Renowned for their rich and heavily spiced gravies, these dishes offer a gustatory excursion into hearty Indian cuisine.

  • Palak Paneer is one such staple. Mineral-rich spinach pairs up with soft paneer, creating a dish that’s as healthy as it is delicious.
  • Then we have Paneer Butter Masala. This classic delicacy is known for its buttery smooth consistency, which highlights soft paneer cubes drenched in aromatic tomato and cashew gravy.
  • Shahi Paneer is another showstopper. Delicate paneer pieces swim in a creamy, nutty sauce, offering an authentic taste of Mughlai cuisine.
  • The list won’t be complete without Malai Kofta, where fried paneer and potato koftas are smothered in a creamy gravy, comfort food like no other.

These North Indian paneer dishes are true comfort meals, perfect for those who love their paneer in a hearty, spicy avatar.

South Indian Paneer Dishes

In South India, paneer gets a zesty makeover with fresh spices, coconut, and scintillating local flavours taking the lead.

  • In a Paneer Ghee Roast, fried paneer cubes are doused in a lip-smacking, ghee-roasted blend of spices and tamarind pulp, presenting you with a dish that’s aromatic and tangy in equal measures.
  • Paneer Pepper Masala, a Chettinad special, pairs paneer with a bold, freshly ground pepper spice mix, creating a dish that is guaranteed to tickle your taste buds.
  • Paneer Kurma, a deliciously creamy dish with subtle spices, showcases paneer in a lighter, vibrant gravy typically made with coconut milk and poppy seeds.
  • The South Indian twist on the popular Paneer Tikka, often dubbed Paneer Varuval, involves marinating paneer in a mix of local spices and yoghurt and grilling it to perfection.

The distinct South Indian paneer dishes, with their medley of spices and flavours, offer a refreshing change from the usual paneer repertoire and give your palette an exciting new experience.

Also Read: Delicious Indian Dishes with Cottage Cheese

Paneer Dishes for Special Diets

Despite its popularity amongst vegetarians, paneer dishes can be easily adapted to suit various dietary preferences. Whether you follow a vegan diet or seek gluten-free options, paneer recipes are catered just for you. Many traditional Indian paneer recipes can easily swap paneer with extra firm tofu, a plant-based protein source that’s perfect for vegans.

Additionally, many paneer dishes naturally adhere to a gluten-free diet and don’t rely on wheat-based ingredients. Let’s explore some unique diet paneer dishes, including paneer sweets for those with a sweet tooth.

Vegan Paneer Dishes

If you’re vegan and miss paneer in your meals, fret not. Many dishes offer vegan-friendly alternatives that match the texture and flavour of paneer. Here are a few such examples:

  • For a lunch main, consider making vegan shahi paneer. To create a vegan-friendly version, swap regular paneer for tofu and substitute dairy cream with coconut cream.
  • Vegan Paneer Butter Masala is another popular choice. Swap paneer for tofu and replace dairy with your favourite plant-based milk. Voila! You have a comforting, creamy dish that’s 100% vegan.
  • Vegan Palak Paneer offers all the earthy flavours of spinach and spices, with tofu taking the place of paneer for a delicious vegan rendition.
  • Lastly, Vegan Tofu Tikka Masala promises all its paneer counterpart’s smoky, spicy delights while staying true to its vegan roots.

These dishes reinstate that a vegan diet doesn’t mean compromising on taste.

Gluten-Free Paneer Dishes

Many paneer dishes are naturally gluten-free, making them a safe and delicious choice for those with dietary restrictions. Here are some such mouth-watering options:

  • Paneer Butter Masala is a beloved dish and a gluten-free delicacy. Its creamy, indulgent gravy with juicy paneer cubes is utterly delectable.
  • Shahi Paneer, a royal feast, does complete justice to a gluten-free diet with its rich, creamy, and aromatic gravy.
  • Kadai Paneer, known for freshly ground spices and capsicum, offers flavour and is naturally gluten-free.
  • Lastly, Chilli Paneer, an Indo-Chinese fusion dish, provides a tangy and spicy delight without any traces of gluten.

If you follow a gluten-free diet, it’s a good idea to confirm all ingredients or substitutes used in the dish and ensure they adhere to your dietary guidelines.


Paneer dishes are prominent in Indian cuisine, from street food stalls to elaborate wedding feasts and your everyday dinner staple. They offer a delicious testament to the versatility of paneer, an integral ingredient in many vegetarian diets. Its soft texture, mild flavour, and adaptability make it the heart of numerous mouth-watering dishes across diverse culinary cultures.

The enduring charm of classic dishes like Palak Paneer or Shahi Paneer and creative new adaptations like Vegan Paneer Butter Masala make paneer recipes universally loved. Paneer resonates with food lovers everywhere, be it the lush fields of North India or the balmy coasts of South India.

Whether you’re a master chef, a newbie cook, or someone who loves good food, there’s a paneer dish for everyone. So why wait? Explore the delightful universe of paneer dishes and recreate these restaurant-style delicacies from the comfort of your home. Let cooking be a joyful journey filled with delicious milestones like these top paneer dishes of 2024.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ideal amount of paneer to serve per person?

On average, 100 grams of paneer is ideal per person. However, the serving size might change depending on the type of dish and the individual’s nutritional requirements.

How can I make paneer at home?

Making paneer at home is simple. Heat full-fat milk and curdle it with an acidic ingredient like lemon juice, vinegar, or citric acid. Then, drain the curdled milk solids into a muslin cloth and press it to form paneer blocks.

In which country paneer is famous?

Paneer is a staple in Indian cuisine. It’s extensively used in various dishes in India, making it famous there. Variations of paneer are also part of Persian and South Asian cuisine.

What are the nutritional benefits of paneer?

Paneer is rich in protein, making it an excellent choice for vegetarians. It’s also a good source of calcium and helps build stronger bones and teeth. Notably, paneer contains Vitamin B-complex, which helps in various metabolic processes in the body.

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