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paneer

Paneer Tikka Masala

Paneer Tikka Masala is the king of vegetarian dishes in the north-Indian cuisine. It’s hard to find an Indian restaurant around the world, which doesn’t feature this, or a variation of this classic. As the name suggests, it is the vegetarian alternative to ‘Chicken Tikka Masala‘, only more delicious!!

Instant pot paneer tikka masala is the vegetarian variation of Chicken Tikka Masala. Paneer cubes simmered in an onions and tomato curry, seasoned with toasted and ground garam masala and finished with a touch of heavy cream #cooking #food #recipe #recipes #foodphotography #foodblogger #yummy #delicious #foodie #tasty #indian #curry

There are many variations of this recipe. Dishes like Butter Paneer Masala, Paneer Makhani, Paneer Pasanda, Paneer Lababdar and so on. They are all variations of this recipe and have a similar flavor profile.

How to make Paneer Tikka Masala?

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Quinoa Vegetable Biryani/Pilaf in Instant Pot

Quinoa Vegetable Biryani/Pilaf is my healthy twist on a popular Indian classic, Vegetable Biryani! This recipe is an adaptation of my go-to Biryani recipe. Biryani is a popular Indian rice casserole, where long grain basmati rice is cooked with meat or vegetables in Indian spices. I use the same recipe, but replace Basmati rice with Quinoa. I add vegetables and paneer (Indian cottage cheese), adding more protein and vitamins to this dish. Fresh herbs like mint and cilantro add a fresh and floral contrast to the earthy flavors of  Biryani Masala. Nuts like almonds and cashews add richness and texture to the rice. I serve it with a side of Cucumber Raita (Yogurt dip), and enjoy a healthy and complete meal in less than 20 minutes.

Even though my family’s love for the classic biryani stands intact, this dish is my effort to introduce a healthier Biryani recipe, so we can enjoy is more often. And the result is simply delicious. It’s quick to make, cooks at lightning speed in my Instant Pot, so a big one-pot weeknight hit in my family!

Quionoa vegetable biryani.   A healthy twist to your everyday vegetarian biryani by Spice Cravings.  Quinoa Vegetable Biryani/Pilaf is my healthy twist on a popular Indian classic, Vegetable Biryani! I replace rice with Quinoa in this recipe.  #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot  #recipes #easyrecipe  #cuisine  #30minutemeal  #instagood #foodphotography #tasty  #indian

Quinoa, the Super Food:

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Achaari Paneer Biryani in Instant Pot

This dish brings together the best of both worlds- Achaari Paneer and Biryani.  Achaari paneer is a popular Indian vegetarian dish where paneer cubes (Indian cottage cheese), are cooked with pickling spices, giving the dish a subtle pickle-like zing.  Biryani, on the other hand, is flavorful rice cooked with spiced meat or vegetables.  In this dish, I merged these two favorites and created Achaari Paneer Biryani!
Achaari Paneer Biryani- combining two popular dishes, Achaari Paneer and Biryani in one pot by Spice Cravings. Achaari paneer biryani combines paneer cubes (Indian cottage cheese), cooked with pickling spices, with biryani, which is rice cooked with Indian spices. #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indianThis dish is milder than your average vegetable biryani, so if you want to bump up the spice level, increase the garam masala and by another teaspoon.  This quick and easy, super delicious meal has become one of our weeknight staples!  Add more vegetables to it, like carrots, beans, potato, and you have yourself a delicious Vegetable & Paneer Biryani!

This biryani can be enjoyed with cucumber raita (yoghurt dip), or with a quick onion relish.   You can make the onion relish by mixing together sliced onions, red wine vinegar, salt, pepper and cayenne!

In this video, I’ve made this Biryani in my 3 Qt Instant Pot, but it can be made in any pressure cooker, or on the stove-top too.  Check out Notes section, for stove-top details.

Try my other Biryanis

Here are some of the other biryanis on my blog:

Instant pot Lamb dum Biryani / pressure cooker Lamb Biryani by Spice Cravings. Lamb Dum Biryani is a meat and rice dish where meat marinated in bold Indian spices is cooked with fragrant Basmati rice and aromatics like onions & herbs. #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #Instant pot Lamb dum Biryani / pressure cooker Lamb Biryani by Spice Cravings. Lamb Dum Biryani is a meat and rice dish where meat marinated in bold Indian spices is cooked with fragrant Basmati rice and aromatics like onions & herbs. #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #curry
Lamb Dum Biryani
Chana Masala BiryaniChana Masala Biryani
Quionoa vegetable biryani. A healthy twist to your everyday vegetarian biryani by Spice Cravings. Quinoa Vegetable Biryani/Pilaf is my healthy twist on a popular Indian classic, Vegetable Biryani! I replace rice with Quinoa in this recipe. #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indianQuinoa Vegetable Biryani Chicken Biryani in Instant PotChicken Biryani

Achaari Paneer Biryani in Instant Pot

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 20

Ingredients

  • 1 paneer block- 10oz.
  • 1 cup basmati rice or any long grain rice, rinsed & soaked for 20 minutes in warm water
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, sliced
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish
  • 2 teaspoon Panchpuran (Indian five-spice blend-fennel, cumin, fenugreek, nigella, mustard)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 3 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 2-3 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon chaat masala
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar, or juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons water
  • INSTANT ONION PICKLE: (Optional)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced thin
  • 1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne

Instructions

1

Prep: Slice onion and bell pepper, cube paneer and keep aside. Rinse rice and soak in warm water for 20 minutes.

2

Turn on Instant pot on SAUTE. When hot, add oil. Add panch phoran seeds and sauté for 30 seconds. Add ginger-garlic paste and sauté for another 30 seconds. Add chopped tomatoes followed by all dry spices and stir. Add onion, bell pepper and vinegar. Stir and sauté for 1 minute. Add drained rice, paneer, water and stir well. Close lid. Vent set to SEALING. Cook on MANUAL for 6 minutes.

3

Open lid after natural pressure release (NPR), fluff rice gently with a fork. Garnish with fresh chopped cilantro.

4

Instant Onion Pickle: Mix together all ingredients under "Instant Onion Pickle". Refrigerate for 10 minutes. Ready to serve!

Notes

STOVE TOP: In a deep sauce pan or a wide skillet, follow all instructions. Add 1.5 cups water and cook covered for 8 minutes on medium heat.

Palak Paneer | Indian Cottage Cheese in Spinach Gravy

Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach based gravy.  The pureed spinach provides a creamy base for this flavorful curry, which is cooked with fresh onions, ginger garlic, tomato and seasoned with garam masala, coriander and cumin.  It is rich in flavor and is a staple in all Indian restaurants.  This is my mom’s famous recipe — which means it’s wicked good!  Another quick ‘n’ easy 30-minute meal from my family to yours!

Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach gravy.  By Spice Cravings #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #curry

Variations: Palak / Spinach Tofu (Vegan) or Chicken

You can make this recipe Vegan by swapping out the paneer with Extra-Firm Tofu.

Alternatively, you can switch out the paneer and add chicken instead, and make Palak Chicken.   If using chicken, use boneless skinless breast or thighs, cut in 1 inch pieces and add it to the pot in step 1, before closing the lid.  When done, wait for 5 minutes and release the pressure.  Remove chicken pieces after pressure cooking and then add the spinach. Continue with the rest of the instructions.  Add the chicken back after pureeing the spinach curry.

I made this recipe in my Instant Pot 6 Qt, but it can be made on a stove-top too.  Check out “Stove-top” instructions below.

Stove-Top Recipe

  • Heat a deep sauce pan on medium high heat.  Since spinach puree tends to splash when simmering, using a deep sauce pan prevents it from messing the cooktop.
  • Add oil and cumin seeds.  When cumin seeds begin to sizzle, add ginger-garlic paste and sauté for 30 seconds.  Sliced onion and green chili go in now, sauté for a minute.  Add tomatoes, salt and dry spices and stir well.   Then, add 1/2 cup water, stir, cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes on medium heat.
  • Open the lid and add 1/2 bag of baby spinach and stir to wilt, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining spinach and wilt for around 2 minutes.  Turn off the heat. Using a hand blender puree the spinach mix.
  • Turn on heat to medium, add paneer cubes and simmer for 30 sec- 1 min, till paneer cubes become soft.  Turn off the heat.   Stir in butter, this adds a silky smooth finish to the sauce, and gives it a gorgeous shine. Add the sugar and stir.  This is optional and totally a personal preference.  Serve Palak Paneer warm, with Jeera rice/Cumin Rice, Toor Dal,  or store-bought Naan, or Roti.  Enjoy!

Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach gravy.  By Spice Cravings #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #curry

Tip for Pureeing Spinach Without Painting your Kitchen Green 🙂

Hand Blenders are great when you want to puree a sauce and get a velvety smooth finish. But, unless the quantity is enough to submerge the blender-head in the sauce, they tend to splash the sauce all over.  To avoid that, I transfer the spinach mix to a tall measuring cup, or the jar that came with my hand blender set.  I puree the spinach in that and there are no splashes at all.

Enjoy a Delicious Indian Vegetarian Meal!

Here are some popular pairings with Palak Paneer.  Usually, we have Palak Paneer with Cumin Basmati Rice or Naan.  You can pair it with Brown Jasmine rice as well.  One of my favorite comfort meals is Palak Paneer with Toor Dal Tadka (Pigeon Peas Soup), Cumin Rice and Cucumber Raita.  It’s one of those meals that I long for when I’ve been away from home traveling.

Jeera Rice or Cumin Rice, is a popular Indian side dish where delicious and aromatic basmati rice is cooked with the nutty and earthy cumin seeds. It is one of the most popular accompaniment with Indian curries. Quick and easy recipe by Spice Cravings. #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #basmati #riceCumin Rice Brown Jasmine Rice in Instant PotBrown Jasmin Rice

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Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach gravy.  By Spice Cravings #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #curry
Palak Paneer in Instant Pot
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
15 mins
Total Time
25 mins
 

Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach gravy. 

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Curry, Paneer, Spinach
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 198 kcal
Author: Spice Cravings
Ingredients
  • 10 oz. bag of baby spinach
  • 10 oz. block of paneer cubed in 1/2 inch pieces (Costco or Indian grocery store)
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste 1/2 inch ginger + 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 small onion slices
  • 2 medium tomatoes chopped
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 green chili (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • 1 teaspoon coriander powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon amchur (dry mango powder) or 1 teaspoon lemon juice at the end
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon butter (optional)
Instructions
  1. Turn on the Instant Pot on SAUTE. Wait 30 seconds for it to heat up. Add oil and cumin seeds. When cumin seeds begin to sizzle, add ginger-garlic paste and sauté for 30 seconds. Add sliced onion and green chili, and sauté for a minute. Add tomatoes, sauté for 30 seconds. Add salt and dry spices and stir well. Add 1/2 cup water and stir. Close the lid. Set pressure valve to SEALING. Cook on MANUAL for 3 minutes.

  2. Release the pressure immediately (QR). Turn on SAUTE. Add 1/2 bag of baby spinach and stir to wilt. add the remaining bag and cook till spinach leaves soften, around 2 minutes. Turn off IP. Using an immersion blender or food processor, puree the spinach mix. I prefer to use the food processor to avoid splatters of spinach.

  3. Pour the spinach puree back in IP. Turn on SAUTE. Add paneer cubes and stir for 30 seconds- 1 minute, till paneer cubes become soft. Turn IP off. Stir in sugar and butter, this brings the dish to life and gives it a shine. Serve hot with zeera rice or naan. Enjoy!

Nutrition Facts
Palak Paneer in Instant Pot
Amount Per Serving
Calories 198 Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 15g 23%
Saturated Fat 7g 35%
Cholesterol 32mg 11%
Sodium 472mg 20%
Potassium 399mg 11%
Total Carbohydrates 7g 2%
Dietary Fiber 2g 8%
Sugars 2g
Protein 8g 16%
Vitamin A 95.9%
Vitamin C 26.4%
Calcium 28.8%
Iron 10.8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Palak Paneer is a popular North Indian Punjabi curry made by cooking soft paneer (Indian cottage cheese), in a healthy and tasty spinach gravy.  By Spice Cravings #food #foodie #foodblogger #delicious #recipe #instantpot #recipes #easyrecipe #cuisine #30minutemeal #instagood #foodphotography #tasty #indian #curry