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A bowl of palak paneer over rice

Palak Paneer

This palak paneer is rich and flavorful, and it tastes just like the Indian restaurant. A vegetarian curry that everyone will love.

Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian, Indian / Pakistani
Keyword palak paneer, saag paneer, vegetarian indian
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Calories 540 kcal
Author Cheryl Malik

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons of ghee or neutral oil divided
  • 12 ounces of paneer cubed. See Note
  • 2 12-ounce of packages frozen spinach
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons grated ginger
  • 1-2 pieces serrano chiles minced. See Note for spice levels
  • 1 piece medium white onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 4 teaspoons coriander powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • 2-3 tablespoons dried fenugreek leaves See Note
  • 1 1/2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/2 cup plain full-fat yogurt
  • 1-2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 piece fresh cilantro chopped, to serve
  • 1 cup steamed basmati rice or cauliflower rice, to serve
  • 1 piece naan to serve

Instructions

  1. Steam spinach and wring out excess water. Transfer to a food processor or blender and process until puréed. Set aside.

  2. Heat 1 tablespoon ghee or neutral oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add cubed paneer and fry until golden brown on a couple of sides, about 3-5 minutes. Homemade paneer will need a little less time, whereas store-bought can handle 5 minutes. Transfer paneer to a plate.

  3. Return skillet to medium-low heat. Heat remaining 3 tablespoons ghee. Add onions, ginger, garlic, and serrano chiles. Cook slowly, stirring regularly, until the mixture becomes a rich medium brown color. Don't skip this part! Add a little water, 1 tablespoon at a time, as needed, if the mixture is burning or drying out.

  4. Add the garam masala, coriander powder, and cumin powder. Sprinkle with a little water to moisten. Cook, stirring frequently, until the spices are fragrant, about 3-5 minutes.

  5. Add the spinach to the skillet and stir well. Add 1 teaspoon salt, half and half, yogurt, and fenugreek leaves. Stir to combine well, then add the paneer and stir gently. Cook about 5 minutes then taste and add more salt as needed.

  6. Serve over steamed basmati rice and top with fresh chopped cilantro. Serve with warmed naan brushed with more ghee.

Recipe Notes

I highly recommend making your own paneer. Follow my How to Make Paneer Step by Step Guide to do this easily. 
 
If you are not using homemade paneer, you can find paneer at Indian groceries and some well-stocked convention grocery stores.
 
Spice Levels
For mild, use 1 serrano chili and deseed it before mincing.
For medium, use 1 serrano chili and leave seeds intact.
For hot, use 2 serrano chilis and leave seeds intact.
 
Fenugreek leaves: I highly recommend you stock your pantry with dried fenugreek leaves if you make Indian recipes. This ingredient will make all the difference between an “at-home” flavor vs. a restaurant-style flavor. You can order them off Amazon or find at Indian grocery stores.
Nutrition Facts
Palak Paneer
Amount Per Serving (8 g)
Calories 540 Calories from Fat 306
% Daily Value*
Fat 34g52%
Saturated Fat 20g125%
Cholesterol 90mg30%
Sodium 582mg25%
Potassium 221mg6%
Carbohydrates 43g14%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 15g30%
Vitamin A 304IU6%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 407mg41%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.