garlic paneer

Garlic Paneer Recipe

By Swasthi on August 26, 2022, Comments, Jump to Recipe

Garlic Paneer is a quick, delicious and easy Paneer appetizer made with Indian Cheese, garlic, red chilies and spices. This 15 mins paneer starter is going to be your new favorite & I am sure you will turn back to it time & again, just like the way we do. Garlic Paneer is super flavorful, spicy, hot and delicious enough to serve as a starter or side in your meal. Feel free to use it in your kathi rolls, wraps, burgers & sandwiches.

garlic paneer appetizer

About Garlic Paneer

Indo-Chinese Garlic Paneer is an item you will find often on the restaurant menus. But that’s a completely different version where paneer is deep fried like it is done for Chili Paneer and Paneer Manchurian. It is later tossed in a sweet spicy and pungent garlicky sauce.

My version of Garlic Paneer is made healthier by simply tossing the paneer in a wok or pan. But let me tell you the sauce is going to tickle your taste buds & you may turn out to be obsessed with this homemade garlic sauce, like me.

This recipe is adapted from our family favorite – Garlic Chicken. I end up making so many dishes with this sauce like Garlic Mushrooms, Garlic prawns, Garlic Noodles and even Garlic rice.

Homemade Sauce

Homemade garlic sauce forms the base of this dish and it is made with fresh garlic, red chilies, salt, vinegar and sugar. We simply blend the ingredients in a spice grinder to a coarse paste and toss it in hot oil. Later paneer is tossed in this. How simple right?

Sometimes, I make a giant garlic paneer sandwich with French baguette. Simply use some hung curd/ strained yogurt to spread, place a lettuce, add garlic paneer, and load with some fresh onions, tomatoes & grated carrots. I have a similar sandwich recipe made with mushrooms – Mushroom Sandwich.

Garlic paneer is a dry dish but it still goes well as a side with Hakka Noodles, Fried rice or Egg Fried noodles. It can also be served simply as a side with any meal.

More Paneer recipes,
Paneer Sandwich
Paneer tikka
Easy Paneer 65
Paneer pakora

garlic paneer starter

How to Make Garlic Paneer (Stepwise Photos)

Prepare Sauce

1. Add 6 large garlic cloves, 5 to 6 deseeded dried red chilies (optionally soaked for 15 mins), 1 teaspoon sugar, ¼ teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon vinegar (white or apple cider) to a blender jar. Make sure your garlic isn’t sprouted else your sauce is likely to taste bitter. To check slice each clove to 2 parts and check inside. If you do not like red chilli seeds, please deseed and use.

making sauce for garlic paneer recipe

2. Add 2 tbsp. water and blend to a smooth or coarse paste to suit your liking.

addition of water for garlic sauce

Make Garlic Paneer

3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add cumin seeds and let them sizzle. You can skip cumin and add a single small strand of mace as well. Add half cup finely chopped onions. You can skip onions and use spring onions.

seasoning cumin for garlic paneer recipe

4. Saute until lightly golden. You can also add capsicum if you want and saute for a while.

sauteing onions for garlic paneer recipe

5. Add the ground paste.

addition of sauce for garlic paneer

6. Saute on a medium flame until the mixture begins to leave the sides of the pan or begins to release oil begins. There is not much oil used but still you can make out when the sauce is ready. It turns fragrant. But do not overcook, garlic turns bitter.

sauteing sauce

7. Taste test and adjust salt and vinegar. If you want you may add 1 teaspoon soya sauce. Add 1 ¼ cup diced paneer and toss gently to coat the mixture. If the sauce is too thick for you to coat the paneer, splash some water. (about a tablespoon only & not a lot).

tossing Indian cheese

8. Saute for just 2 to 3 minutes. Do not overcook. It just takes one to 2 minutes.


Garnish garlic paneer with chopped coriander leaves or celery.

garlic paneer starter recipe

Related Recipes

Recipe Card

garlic paneer starter recipe

Garlic Paneer Recipe (Quick Paneer Starter)

Spicy garlic paneer is a quick starter you will love! Paneer tossed in a spicy, flavorful and delicious garlic sauce. Serve it as a starter or as a side.
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For best results follow the step-by-step photos above the recipe card

Prep Time4 minutes
Cook Time11 minutes
Total Time15 minutes

Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )

  • cup paneer cubed
  • 6 large garlic cloves (refer notes)
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar (white or apple cider vinegar)
  • 5 to 6 red chilies kashmiri (seeds removed or 1 teaspoon chilli powder or chilli flakes)
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (adjust to taste)
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • ½ teaspoon cumin or 1 small strand of mace (optional)
  • ½ cup onions very fine chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coriander leaves or celery fine chopped for garnish
  • 1 teaspoon soya sauce naturally brewed – optional


How to make Garlic Paneer Appetizer

  • Blend together garlic, chilies, sugar, salt and vinegar with 2 to 3 tbsp water to a smooth or coarse paste.
  • Heat a pan with oil and add cumin seeds.
  • When the cumin seeds sizzle, add onions & saute until golden. Regulate the heat to medium. Add the sauce and cook until it thickens and the oil separates.
  • Reduce the flame completely and taste test the sauce. Adjust salt and if you want you may add soya sauce.
  • Add paneer and gently mix well to coat the sauce. If it is too dry you may splash little water, about a tablespoon. Saute for 2 to 3 minutes. Garnish with coriander or celery.
  • Serve garlic paneer hot as an appetizer, side or with fried rice, noodles. You can also stuff it in your wraps, kathi rolls, sandwiches etc.


  • Make sure your garlic isn’t sprouted. Sprouted garlic makes your dish bitter. To make sure slice each garlic to 2 parts and check the centers.
  • Paneer can be coated with corn flour batter and shallow fried or deep fried first then added to the garlic sauce. For this you will cook the sauce with little water until it is thick yet flowy but not dry as shown in the recipe.
  • This dish may not be for you if you suffer from acidity. 

Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.

For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.

NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)

Nutrition Facts
Garlic Paneer Recipe (Quick Paneer Starter)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 334 Calories from Fat 252
% Daily Value*
Fat 28g43%
Saturated Fat 14g88%
Cholesterol 61mg20%
Sodium 524mg23%
Potassium 38mg1%
Carbohydrates 6g2%
Sugar 2g2%
Protein 13g26%
Vitamin C 2.6mg3%
Calcium 460mg46%
Iron 0.2mg1%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Tried this recipe?Mention @SwasthisRecipes or tag #swasthisrecipes!

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Garlic Paneer Recipe

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About Swasthi

I’m Swasthi Shreekanth, the recipe developer, food photographer & food writer behind Swasthi’s Recipes. My aim is to help you cook great Indian food with my time-tested recipes. After 2 decades of experience in practical Indian cooking I started this blog to help people cook better & more often at home. Whether you are a novice or an experienced cook I am sure Swasthi’s Recipes will assist you to enhance your cooking skills. More about me

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Would this be good to serve cold as nibbles at a party?

5 stars
it tasted so good!!!

5 stars
It was very delicious ?.

5 stars
Simple yet delicious recipe

5 stars
This recipe is just sooo brilliant!!! A super quick starter for a evening snack/party starter!
Thanks a ton for this one!

5 stars
For this recipe is very helpful.

5 stars
Folloed the procedure as it is resulted very tasty quick starter

5 stars

Where would I find the chilis used in this recipe? Are there alternatives if I can’t find those chilis?

5 stars
This was the first time I tried Paneer, and it was delicious. I made a smaller quantity since I was just cooking for myself. I also forgot to add the water, but it turned out alright. Thanks for the recipe!

Point 8. “Pour that to the pan”
Its already in the pan , right? (both, the gravy and the paneer cubes). So where am I transferring ? Plz xplain 😀

5 stars
Thank you for this quick and easy recipe. It was a huge hit at my place!

5 stars
Super easy and quick for a snack … totally loved it

Dear Swasti,
Always look through your recipes & today tried your garlic paneer. Was fantastic & it vanished in minutes. Thanks for a quick, easy & delicious recipe.

dear swathi!
your recipes are awesome.I always look for your recipes when I am in need of help. Its ethnic as well as some of them have the taste of improvised experiments that you have successfully made. So for me Swathi is the best. congratilations!!!

5 stars
dear swathi,

5 stars
Such a time saver !!!
This recipe turned out to be very delicious.. everyone licked their plates..
Thank you for this recipe..

I didn’t have vinegar in my kitchen so I skipped it. Still it turned out great..

Hi Swasthi,

Firstly, wish you a happy and healthy new year 2021.

I just happened to stumbled upon this recipe.. it seems so interesting..I will definitely try it.

However, I do not have vinegar. Can I replace the vinegar in this recipe with lemon juice or any other alternate ? If yes, how much quantity will be needed?

Thank you!

5 stars
Tried this tonight and everyone absolutely loved it , thank you so much ☺️

5 stars
Made this delicious

5 stars
This turned out very well. Thanks for the detailed pics. Those of us who are hesitant cooks are in great need of them!
Could you share your preferred brand of soya sauce for this dish?