In this post I am going to share with you my Easy Paneer Recipe. You can purchase paneer from the store but it is so quick and easy to make so I prefer to make my own.
Easy Paneer Recipe
What is Paneer
It is an Indian homemade cheese that is used in Indian cuisine. Over the years it has become really popular and there’s so many great dishes that you can cook using this indian cheese.
Paneer is very similar to Ricotta Cheese. Although you can easily purchase Paneer from the store, homemade is so much better.
Homemade paneer is softer and creamier. It is also cheaper to make your own. Once you make your own I promise you will never go back to store bought.
When I say this is an Easy Paneer Recipe, trust me it is.
You have to use full-cream milk as the milk needs to have enough fat to separate into the curds. Paneer has a very mild milky flavour and it is a firm cheese with a crumbly texture.
For this recipe I just used milk and some lemon juice, you can use vinegar too. If you want a softer texture you can add some fresh cream to the milk.
How to make Paneer
Some of us are put off by the thought of making Paneer. I think just the fact that it is a cheese makes it seem like a tedious task.
I promise it is one of the easiest things to make and it’s feels like such an accomplishment when it’s made. And yet it takes absolutely no effort.
It is a simple process where you heat up your milk. Just before it reaches boiling point, you will see little bubbles starting to form, you start adding lemon juice.
You have to mix the milk once the lemon juice is added, for at least a minute before it starts to separate.
Lemon juice allows the milk to curdle. You will then see a separation of the curds and whey.
The whey will be a clear with a yellowish colour. If the liquid is looking milky that means the curds and whey hasn’t separated well.
A cheesecloth is used to drain the excess water from the curds. You press something heavy, for a few minutes, onto the cheese so the excess liquid is removed.
The paneer can be refrigerated for an hour to firm up a little more. Cut and use as desired.
Variations for Paneer
I have posted another recipe previously where I added some herbs and spice to my paneer. You can even add some chilli flakes, garlic and dried herbs if you wish.
That’s a great idea if you want a more flavoured cheese. I had no time to go fancy with this Paneer.
I have a million unfinished DIY projects around our home since moving so I thought now is a good time to finish those. I am trying to cook and bake in between my DIY projects. So much to do and so little time.
The amount of lemon juice can also differ. Sometimes you may require a little more than suggested.
Although I personally haven’t used yogurt in my paneer. I know there are recipes that use yogurt together with the milk for a softer texture.
There’s a recipe by The Paupered Chef for paneer made with yogurt. You may want to give it a try, it that’s what you’re looking for.
If you are using Paneer in a curry it is best to have a firmer texture. If it’s too soft it will disintergrate into the sauce and that’s not very pleasant.
I hope this recipe helps you make the perfect Paneer and you enjoy the process. If you do try my recipe please drop a comment and a star rating, it is always appreciated.
Recipes using Paneer:
Easy Paneer Recipe
- 2 litres/8 cups full cream milk
- 4-6 tbsp lemon juice
- Pour the milk into a large pot and bring to a gentle boil on low to medium heat.
- Keep a close eye on the milk as it can burn or spill over.
- Just as the milk reaches boiling point reduce the heat and add the lemon juice and stir (at least a minute) until you see the milk splitting. Start with 4 tablespoons of lemon juice and add more if required.
- Remove from the heat as soon as you see the curds and whey separating.
- Line a sieve with a cheese or muslin cloth and strain the paneer into this.
- Once all the liquid has been drained, squeeze the paneer and shape it into a neat block.
- Place something heavy on top of the paneer. It should take about 10 minutes until all the liquid is drained. You can refrigerate the paneer for an hour to firm up a little more.
- Cut into little cubes. Makes about 2 cups of cubed cheese. You can use it immediately or store it in the freezer for later use.
- You can use vinegar instead of lemon juice
- When stirring you will see the curd separating from the whey, the liquid will be a clear, yellowish colour
- If you do not have a cheese cloth or muslin cloth a clean kitchen towel will work