|September 26, 2022


Is there any vegetarian (or even a non-veg foodie!), who doesn’t love Paneer Butter Masala?!

Paneer Butter Masala is one of India’s most popular paneer gravy recipes, along with its equally legendary cousin, the paneer tikka masala gravy dish, and with good reason! In this lip-smacking curry dish, chunky, soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese) cubes are smothered in a creamy, lightly spiced tomato sauce that is downright delicious. With this step-by-step butter paneer masala recipe, you can easily make the best Butter Paneer Masala restaurant style right at home!

What is Butter Paneer Masala?

As mentioned earlier, the Paneer Butter Masala recipe is a rich and creamy dish of paneer (Indian cottage cheese) in a tomato, butter, and cashew sauce that is known as the “makhani gravy”, or the paneer butter masala gravy. The acidity of the tomatoes combined with the sweetness of the cream makes for a velvety, almost addictive sauce. 

Paneer Butter Masala is so iconic that you can get its recipe in almost all regions across India. For instance, you can get the butter paneer masala recipe in Marathi, for people living in Maharashtra. Or just search “butter paneer masala ki recipe” in google, and you’ll get pages upon pages of this delicious recipe in seconds!

Also known as Butter Paneer, or suhana paneer gravy masala, this yummy and popular vegetarian curry dish are inspired/derived from the recipe for Butter Chicken, a.k.a. Chicken Makhani.


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How to make mouthwateringly delicious Paneer Butter Masala

Here's what you'll need for making fantastic Paneer Butter Masala or Paneer Makhani:


Using this step-by-step butter paneer masala recipe, you can easily make the best Butter Paneer Masala restaurant style right at home!

Print Recipe

Ingredients for Paneer Butter Masala gravy

  • Oil, Butter, and Cream - These 3 fats go into this recipe at different points to create that luscious, creamy gravy. But don't worry, this doesn't translate to a heavy, calorie-high recipe.
  • Dried Kashmiri Red Chilies - These dried red chilies provide color and yet don't have spiciness, which makes them perfect for this recipe. If you don't have dried chilies, you can substitute with 1-2 tablespoons Alcoeats Kashmiri Chili Powder that can be added along with the other ground spice powders when the blended gravy is simmering.
  • Onions & Tomatoes - This recipe has an onion-tomato proportion of 1:6. In this, onions make up the base for the curry, but it is the tomatoes that add most of the flavor
  • Ginger Garlic Paste - You can use minced garlic and ginger separately, but in most Indian homes, ginger garlic paste is generally made in large amounts and refrigerated. You can also buy Alcoeats ginger-garlic paste easily at supermarkets
  • Cashew nuts - Instead of cream in the recipe, we use cashews which provide the same creaminess and density without the calories.
  • Khus Khus/ Poppy Seeds - You can use Khus Khus or white poppy seeds for flavor and that incredibly lush, creamy texture of paneer butter masala.
  • Spices - You can use whole spices and ground spices in this recipe. Adding whole spices like cinnamon, cloves, cardamom, and bay leaves gives the initial flavoring to the onion-tomato mixture. Add dry spices like Alcoeats chili powder, Alcoeats turmeric powder, Alcoeats garam masala powder later when the blended gravy is simmering for a bit of spiciness and heat and to give flavor.
  • Tomato Ketchup - This is a non-traditional ingredient, but it works here because it has the perfect blend of tangy, salty, and sweet. 
  • Kasuri Methi - Dried fenugreek is used extensively in Indian cuisine to add a touch of smokiness and to finish cooking the dish.

Cooking Instructions

  • Start by wrapping the spices in a muslin or cheesecloth to make a bouquet garnish. This helps add all the flavor without having to fish out the spices one by one later.
  • Cook the whole Kashmiri chilies (or Alcoeats Kashmiri Chili Powder), onion, tomato, cashew, poppy seeds, and spices together till the tomatoes turn soft and pulpy. This becomes the base of the gravy.
  • Remove the whole spices and blend the onion tomato paste to a smooth consistency. You can add some water if required here.
  • Let the gravy simmer with the powdered spices and salt in butter for 10-15 minutes till you see a little oil floating to the top.
  • Smoke the gravy just a little bit. Doing this takes your gravy to the next level!
  • To close off, add kasuri methi (i.e., dried fenugreek), paneer, and cream, and cook for a minute or two.
  • You are done! Enjoy mouth-watering paneer butter masala with either Basmati rice or butter naan.

Faqs on Butter Paneer Gravy

How do you make paneer gravy thicker?
What is the best thickener for gravy?
What is the formula for gravy?
What does adding butter to gravy do?
How can I thicken my gravy naturally?

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