Paneer tikka masala is packed with flavor with a pan fry pieces of paneer until golden brown and then bathe them in a rich tomato sauce. The paneer tikka masala is so good that everybody want to lick the bowl.

Cook with tomatoes anything and it is called tikka masala. “Tikka” in Indian cuisine refers to pieces of meat or vegetables marinated in spices. “Masala” is the blends of spices in paste or powder form. Chicken tikka masala is a dish of cooked marinated chicken pieces that’s bathed in a rich tomato sauce which can be replaced by paneer in case of a vegetarian recipe.

There are many spices used in paneer tikka masala recipe, yet it is simple to cook. The paneer has a lovely flavorful crust on the outside, and it pair so well with the masala sauce.

The preparation for this paneer tikka masala is similar to chicken tikka masala in that you marinate the paneer in yogurt and spices. The yogurt helps coat the paneer pieces with spices. When pan frying the paneer, the yogurt forms a thin crust around the exterior. Pan fry the paneer first because they can burn easily. A 14-ounce block of paneer will yield a lot of pieces, cook the paneer in two batches. After cooking the first batch, wipe down the pan with a paper towel to get rid any burned black bits.  The marinated paneer splatters a lot when you place them on the pan, so be careful. The second batch tends to cook a little quicker.

By the way, you’ll inevitably have some yogurt marinade left over. Never throw it away. Add it to the sauce towards the end. Heavy cream helps balance the acidity of the tomatoes and gives the sauce a lovely creaminess. Keep the calories down by using only 3 tablespoons of heavy cream. If you are truly averse to heavy cream, use 3 or 4 tablespoons of whole milk yogurt.

  • Prep Time45 min
  • Cook Time20 min
  • Total Time1 hr 5 min
  • Yield6 Plates
  • Serving Size150 g
  • Energy430 cal
  • Cuisine
    • Indian
  • Course
    • Main Course
  • Cooking Method
    • Cutting
    • Frying


    • 1-2 cups of paneer tikka cubes
    • 1 cup onion onion, minced
    • 1 cup tomato puree
    • 1 pureed tomato)
    • 1 tsp of coriander powder
    • ½ tsp of jeera / cumin seeds
    • ¼ tsp of turmeric powder
    • 1 tsp of Kashmiri red chilli powder or ½ tsp regular chilli powder
    • 1 tsp of minced ginger
    • ½ tsp of crushed garlic
    • 1 tbsp of kasuri methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
    • ¼ cup of cream
    • Salt to taste
    • Ginger slivers for garnish
    • Coriander leaves for garnish (optional)
    • 1 tsp of tandoori masala 
    • 1 tbsp of oil


  • Heat oil in a pan and add the cumin seeds.

  • When they sizzle and turn aromatic (5-10 seconds), add the minced onion.

  • When the onions begin to turn a dark brown, add the ginger and garlic. Saute for 10 seconds.

  • Add all the spice powders – red chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder and some salt.

  • Fry for 20 seconds until the mixture turns fragrant.

  • Take care not to burn the spice powders by keeping the flame at medium low.
  • Now add the tomato paste and pureed tomatoes along with about 1 cup water.

  • Mix well and cook on low flame until the mixture thickens, about 3-4 mins.
  • Add the kasuri methi and the cream.

  • Mix well, keep flame on low and heat through. Don’t boil the mixture for more than 5 seconds or so

  • Finally add the paneer tikka pieces, tandoori masala, coriander leaves (if using) and more salt if required and mix well.
  • Once the gravy and the paneer are heated through, remove from fire.
  • Garnish with ginger slivers before serving.

Paneer Tikka Masala goes great with tawa naan and roti for dinner. It can be served with a super quick jeera rice made in rice cooker.

  • 4 servings per container
  • Serving Size150 g
  • Amount per serving
  • Calories430
  • % Daily Value*
  • Total Fat23 g29.49%
  • Saturated Fat9 g45%
  • Trans Fat0 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat0 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat0 g
  • Cholesterol40 mg13.33%
  • Sodium230 mg10%
  • Total Carbohydrate40 g14.55%
  • Dietary Fiber2 g7.14%
  • Total Sugars1 g
  • Protein14 g28%
  • Calcium350 mg26.92%
  • Iron0.8 mg4.44%
  • Vitamin A360 mcg40%
  • Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid)4.8 mg5.33%