This paneer tikka masala takes just five ingredients and half an hour to make and tastes so good! Serve with your favourite grain and buttery naan bread.
Paneer is such a brilliant ingredient to use in vegetarian cooking. The firm texture makes it a filling alternative to meat and it works so amazingly well in a slightly spicy tikka masala sauce.
For a long time I really held out on trying paneer.
I have no idea why, I don't know if it was just the whole idea of cheese in curry that freaked me out or the fact that it's sometimes translated as cottage cheese on menus even though it bears no resemblance to the bright white watery stuff I'm used to but then I tried adding halloumi to curry (in this cashew nut curry with halloumi, it's amazing) and realised that cheese is as good in curry as it is in everything else.
And that's really really good.
Why we love this paneer tikka masala:
- It's so quick to make thanks to the help of a ready made spice paste (no judgment here thank you!) and the use of a quick cooking ingredient like paneer, you can have homemade curry in just 30 minutes which, let's be honest, is an absolute dream
- It requires only five ingredients which means that it's not only quick but also pretty economical and reduces the amount of clean up required
- It's easily customisable. I kept it to just the five hero ingredients but if you want to add any other extras then it's so easy to do. Feel free to toss in a few handfuls of spinach or some broccoli for an easy veg upgrade which will taste amazing in the spicy sauce
What is paneer?
Paneer is a non melting cheese commonly used in Indian, Nepalese, Bangladeshi and Pakistani cuisine. It has a mild flavour and works perfectly in rich curry sauces like this tikka masala.
Is paneer like halloumi?
Paneer and halloumi are similar in that they can both be heated without melting but paneer has a milder flavour than halloumi.
Where to buy paneer?
Luckily, since paneer is so delicious, it's pretty easy to get hold of. I find it in the cheese section of any supermarket. Try looking in the speciality cheese section if you're struggling to find it so that you can make all kinds of paneer recipes!
What does paneer taste like?
Paneer has a pretty mild flavour which means it's perfect for adding lots of spices to as it's a great vehicle for anything you want to add to it.
The first time we made paneer was actually only a few months ago. Two of our friends came over for a big lunch and we made a feast full of different kinds of curry and one of those was a paneer curry.
It tasted amazing and was definitely the hit of the dinner party so we were keen to try making paneer again soon.
So the next time we wanted a quick, easy dinner with a bit of spice we decided to go down the paneer route. The best thing about this curry dish is that it takes so few ingredients.
Now you could definitely go with a homemade spice paste. I normally would and I applaud you if you're keen for that even on the busiest or laziest of weeknights. But on some nights I just want to get it out of a jar.
We normally go with Pataks, their spice pastes are pretty reliable and we'll often have a jar of it on hand incase we need a super quick dinner.
INGREDIENTS YOU NEED TO MAKE THIS PANEER TIKKA MASALA:
- Oil - Vegetable oil or whatever you prefer is fine
- Tikka Masala Paste - This is the brand we normally use.
- Chopped Tomatoes
I love how few ingredients are needed for this paneer curry. If you feel like upping the veg content then you could totally add a few handfuls of spinach leaves or another green vegetable but honestly I think it's pretty perfect how it is.
It takes just a few steps to make this paneer tikka masala. It's the perfect comfort food and just the thing you need now that the weather is getting a little cooler.
I can't think of anything better to curl up with than a big bowl of this paneer curry piled on top of fluffy white rice with a big old naan bread on the side.
You definitely shouldn't miss out on that naan bread, Will makes his own and it is so delicious.
HOW TO MAKE PANEER TIKKA MASALA (STEP BY STEP):
- Make the best of the curry: Heat the oil and gently fry the onion then add the tikka masala pasta and cook until the paste darkens and smells really fragrant.
- Add the paneer: Add the paneer and stir then fry for another 5-10 minutes until browned.
- Finish the curry sauce: Add the chopped tomatoes and half a tin of water and simmer until the sauce has thickened then serve.
Equipment you need to make this recipe...
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Want more? Try these other vegetarian curry recipes before you go!
- Vegan Chickpea Tikka Masala
- Halloumi Curry with Spinach Cashew Sauce
- Paneer Makhani
- Easy Pressure Cooker Saag Aloo
- Chickpea Curry with Coconut Milk
- Pressure Cooker Vegetable Curry
5 Ingredient Paneer Tikka Masala
- 1 tablespoon Oil
- 1 Onion chopped
- 450 g Paneer cubed
- 4 tablespoon Tikka Masala Paste
- 1 400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
- Heat the oil over a medium heat and add the onion. Fry until the onion is softened then add the tikka masala paste and cook for 5 minutes until fragrant.
- Add the paneer cubes to the pan and stir to coat in the paste then continue frying for another 5-10 minutes until the paneer is browned on all sides. Pour in the chopped tomatoes and then fill the tin up half way and add that to the curry as well. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Serve with rice and naan bread.
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