Tender spinach and squeaky paneer cooked with gentle spices make saag paneer a legend! So delicious and perfectly vegetarian.
For another stunning dish with paneer, try this delicious Paneer Tikka Masala!
Saag paneer is a great example of a dish that is so much more than the sum of its parts. While the ingredient list is short and without any great surprises, the end result is truly spectacular!
Spinach may not be for everyone, but in this dish it takes on a lovely savoury character that is sure to please. It is perfectly balanced by the delicate flavour of paneer and gentle combination of spices.
The result? One of my absolute favourites, and a recipe that is sure to become one of yours!
What is saag paneer?
Saag paneer is a classic vegetarian dish from India. Coming from humble roots in rural northern India, this creamy dish is a wonderful comfort food that has become a staple in Indian restaurants around the world.
Saag paneer is very similar to palak paneer to the extent that the terms are often used interchangeably. Strictly speaking, though, saag paneer can be made with a variety of greens while palak paneer only uses spinach. Palak paneer can also be made using yoghurt in place of cream.
How to make this dish
This recipe begins by frying the paneer till it is a lovely shade of golden. Cut the paneer into evenly sliced cubes to get them ready for the frying pan.
Now heat ghee or oil in a frying pan and adding the paneer cubes to the pan over medium heat. Paneer can burn quickly so don’t walk away at this stage and make sure you are turning it frequently.
Remove the paneer from the pan to a plate and sprinkle with garam masala. Set the plate aside until needed later.
Using the same pan, add the copped onion and cook over low heat for five minutes, or until they are soft and slightly golden. When the onions are ready, add in the ginger and garlic and stir fry for about 30 seconds. Now add the coriander, cumin, chilli powder and tumeric. Stir it all together to combine and allow the flavours to release.
With the spices added, it’s time for the grated tomato, defrosted chopped spinach, chopped cilantro/coriander, salt and water. Let it cook with a cover on over low heat for 10 minutes.
Now stir in the cream and bring the cooked paneer back to the pan. Cover it with a lid once again and cook for 5 minutes longer.
This dish is fantastic as a side with other curries, or can be enjoyed with rice or warm naan.
- Keep a close watch on the paneer when browning as it can burn very easily. Use medium low heat and turn the paneer cubes often.
- While I’ve made this recipe using spinach, other greens can be added as well. Mustard leaves can be a great option, as can kale, collards or chard.
- Serve this dish with rice or warm naan.
More curry recipes
- Dal makhani
- Vegan coconut lentil curry with butternut squash
- Moong dal tadka
- Egg curry with peas and potatoes
- 1 lbs/450g fresh Indian paneer, cut into cubes
- 1 tbsp ghee or vegetable oil
- 1 tsp garam masala
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 1 tbsp garlic paste or 2 cloves
- ½ tsp Kashmiri chilli powder
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp cumin
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tomato, grated
- 1 lbs/450g frozen spinach, defrosted, chopped
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro/coriander
- Salt to taste
- 120ml/1/2 cup water
- 4 tbsp double/whipping cream or full fat yogurt
- Heat the ghee or oil in a frying pan and brown the paneer over medium heat until slightly golden. Remove to a separate plate, sprinkle with garam masala and set aside till needed.
- To the same pan add the chopped onion and cook over low heat for 5 minutes until soft and slightly golden, add the ginger and garlic and stir fry for 30 seconds, then add the coriander, cumin, chilli powder and turmeric, stir until the flavours are released.
- Add the grated tomato, defrosted chopped spinach, chopped cilantro/coriander, salt and water and cook over low heat and covered for 10 minutes. Now stir in the cream and add the paneer. Cook covered for 5 minutes longer.
Saag paneer can work with a range of greens. Take a look at the recipe for ideas.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 373Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 14gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 11gCholesterol: 70mgSodium: 856mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 4gSugar: 6gProtein: 19g