Paneer bhurji is a popular North Indian dish made of Indian cottage cheese aka panner, herbs and spice powders. It is eaten with roti, chapati, paratha, poori, bread, pav or as a side in a meal. Paneer bhurji can also be used as a stuffing in kathi rolls, sandwiches and bread rolls.
I make paneer bhurji in numerous ways. Here I have shared the simplest way that can be made just under 15 mins if you have the paneer ready.
Sometimes I also add mixed veggies like carrot, peas and capsicum to make mixed veg paneer bhurji. I also use leafy greens like methi & palak to make paneer palak bhurji.
We prefer homemade paneer to make paneer bhurji as it is soft and fresh tasting. However you can also use store bought one. I have also shared here how to make paneer for this recipe.
Paneer bhurji recipe
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
Ingredients to make paneer bhurji
- 1 cup paneer crumbled (or 4 cups milk, 2 tsps lemon juice)
- 1½ tbsp oil or as needed
- ½ tsp cumin or jeera
- 1 onion or ½ cup chopped finely
- 1 green chilli chopped (skip for kids)
- 1 tsp ginger garlic paste or minced or grated
- 1 tomato chopped finely
- ¼ cup capsicum or green peas (optional)
- 1/8 tsp turmeric or haldi
- ¼ tsp salt or as needed
- ½ to ¾ tsp red chilli powder
- ¾ tsp garam masala powder or pav bhaji masala(adjust as needed)
- ½ tsp kasuri methi
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp Coriander leaves finely chopped
How to make the recipe
To make paneer – skip this section if you have it
- Pour 4 cups milk to a pot and bring it to a boil. Add 1 tbsp vinegar or lemon juice and Stir. When the milk begins to curdle well, turn off the stove. If the milk does not curdle then add 1 tbsp more vinegar. Drain it to a colander lined with a muslin cloth. Rinse it well under running water.
- Squeeze off the excess whey and make a knot with the cloth. Hang the paneer for about 10 to 15 minutes to remove excess whey. Meanwhile chop the onions & tomatoes finely.
How to make paneer bhurji
- Add 1½ tbsp oil to a hot pan. Then add ½ tsp cumin seeds and allow them to splutter.
- Next add ½ cup finely chopped onions and 1 chopped green chilli. Fry until lightly transparent or golden. Then add 1 tsp ginger garlic paste or mince, saute until the raw smell goes off.
- Add 1 finely chopped tomato, ¼ tsp salt and 1/8 tsp turmeric. Fry until the tomatoes turn soft and mushy.
- Then add ½ to ¾ tsp red chili powder, ½ tsp kasuri methi & ¾ tsp garam masala. Mix and saute until the raw smell goes off from the mixture & the masala leaves the sides of the pan.
- Stir in ¼ cup peas or capsicum if using. Fry until capsicum turns slightly soft.
- Crumble paneer well and add to the pan. Stir and fry till everything blends well just for 2 minutes. Taste it and check the salt and spice. If needed add more salt.
- Turn off the stove. Add 2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves. Serve paneer bhurji with roti, paratha or bread. Sprinkle some lemon juice before serving.
Paneer bhurji recipe – step by step
Making paneer – Skip this section if you already have paneer.
1. Bring milk to a boil in a pot.
2. Add lemon juice to the boiling milk and stir. You can also use vinegar.
3. When you see the milk begins to curdle. Switch off the stove and let it sit for 2 to 3 minutes.
4. Place a muslin or cheese cloth over a colander. Pour the curdled milk to the cloth. Rinse it well under running water. Bring all the edges together and squeeze the paneer to drain off excess whey. Make a knot and hang it for about 10 to 15 minutes until you prepare the onions and tomatoes.
5. We need moist paneer with no dripping whey from it.
How to make paneer bhurji recipe
6. Pour oil to a hot pan. Add cumin and allow to crackle.
7. Transfer finely chopped onions and fry until they turn pink or golden.
8. Then add ginger garlic paste and fry until the raw smell disappears.
9. Add finely chopped tomatoes, turmeric and salt. Saute until the tomatoes turn mushy and soft. If needed you can cover and cook.
10. Next add garam masala, red chili powder and kasuri methi. If using amchur add it now.
11. Mix everything well and continue to cook till the mixture smells good. The raw smell of the masala has to go away. If using capsicum or peas, add them at this stage and saute until soft.
12. Add Crumbled paneer. Mix and stir well. Cook for just 2 to 3 minutes till the raw smell from paneer goes off. Do not over cook.
13. Lastly add coriander leaves and lemon juice.
Serve paneer bhurji with bread, roti or paratha.