Indian Palak Paneer is a much loved and extremely popular spinach curry dish with soft paneer cheese. This is an amazing way to enjoy spinach. It is spicy goodness that we enjoyed with garlic naan bread and rice.
This dish can be made with just about any type of green and it is then called sang paneer. It takes a bit of work, but totally worth the effort. Enjoy it!
This recipe calls for paneer cheese which you can find the recipe as well as many other delicious authentic Indian recipes as well as information about the country at “Our Journey to India”.
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Indian Palak Paneer (Spinach Curry)
For the Palak Puree
- 8 ounces spinach fresh
- 1-2 green chilies chopped
- 1-2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
- ½ inch ginger roughly chopped
- 3 cups water for blanching the spinach
- 3 cups water for ice bath
- for the palak curry:
- 1 small onion finely chopped, about ⅓ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 medium tomato chopped, about ⅓ cup finely chopped tomatoes
- 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
- ½ tsp cumin seeds/jeera
- ¼ tsp turmeric powder/haldi
- ½ tsp red chili powder optional
- pinch asafoetida/hing
- ¼ tsp garam masala powder add more to taste
- 1 bay leaf
- 8 ozs paneer see recipe
- ⅓ to ½ cup water add more or less as necessary
- 2 Tbsp cream
- 2 tbsp oil or ghee or unsalted butter
- 1 tsp fenugreek leaves dry. The leaves is crushed and added right at the end, ust before adding cream.
- pinch salt to taste
- 2 tsp cream or butter for topping the palak paneer for topping the palak paneer
- ½ inch ginger julienned
- 1 lemon or lime wedges
Make the Palak Puree
- Rinse the palak or spinach leaves very well in running water. tender stems are fine, otherwise cut them off.
- Boil 3 cups water in a pan, add ¼ tsp salt to the hot water and stir. Add the palak leaves in the hot water. close with a lid and let the palak leaves sit in the water for 2-3 mins.
- Drain the palak leaves.
- Immediately add the palak or spinach leaves in a pan or bowl containing ice cold water. This stops the cooking and preserves the green color. Add 8 to 10 ice cubes to 3 cups water to get cold water. allow the spinach leaves to be in the cold water for a minute or two.
- Drain the ice cold water. add the spinach in a blender or grinder jar with chopped ginger, garlic and green chilies.
- Make a smooth palak puree. no need to add water while making the puree. keep the spinach puree aside.
Make the Palak Curry
- heat oil or ghee or butter in a pan or kadai. If using butter, melt it a low flame making sure that the butter does not brown.
- Add the cumin and let them splutter.
- add the bay leaf.
- Add the finely chopped onions. saute till the onions become golden.
- Add the finely chopped garlic. saute till the raw aroma of garlic goes away. no need to brown the garlic.
- Add the chopped tomatoes. stir and saute the tomatoes till they soften.
- Once the tomatoes are softened and you see fat releasing from the sides of the mixture. then add the turmeric powder, red chili powder and asafoetida/hing.
- Stir very well.
- then add the palak puree.
- stir well.
- add about ⅓ to ½ cup water or as required. stir again.
- Simmer for 6-7 minutes or more till the palak or spinach is cooked. season with salt. the sauce will also thicken by now.
- Stir and add garam masala powder.
- Stir again and then add the paneer cubes.
- Stir gently and simmer on a low flame till the paneer cubes become soft and succulent, about 1 to 2 minutes.
- lastly add cream. stir gently again so that the cream gets incorporated in the palak paneer. Turn off the flame.
- Stir and serve the palak paneer hot with some naan and/or rice. you can top the palak paneer with some butter or cream also while serving. also drizzle a few drops of lime or lemon juice on top along with ginger julienne.