Paneer lababdar recipe – Delicious North Indian restaurant style paneer gravy with video & step by step photos. Paneer lababdar is mostly found on North Indian restaurant menus. Though not as popular as the paneer butter masala & paneer makhani, it is a favorite among many who love paneer in rich and delicious gravy. This dish is very very flavorful, creamy, tasty and exceptionally good.
This would be a great addition to your weekend menu, parties, when you have guests home or during festivals. It can be served with roti, naan, plain paratha, plain basmathi rice, ghee rice, jeera rice, pulao etc.
You can also make the gravy ahead of time and refrigerate it. Just heat up the gravy and add the paneer before serving.
Paneer lababdar recipe
Ingredients (1 cup = 240ml )
To boil & blend
- 2 cups tomatoes chopped (3 large)
- ½ cup water
- 10 cashews or skinned almonds
- 2 inch cinnamon (dalchini)
- 4 cloves (laung)
- 4 cardamoms (elaichi)
- 4 red chilies (less spicy variety like kashmiri or byadgi)
For the gravy
- 2 tbsps oil
- 1 bay leaf (tej patta)
- ½ cup onions very finely chopped (1 medium)
- 1 tbsp ginger garlic paste
- 1 ¼ tsp coriander powder (daniya powder)
- ½ tsp garam masala
- ½ tsp red chili powder
- Salt as needed
- ½ cup water or as needed for the gravy
- ¾ tsp sugar
- 1 green chilli slit
- ½ to ¾ tsp kasuri methi crushed or dried fenugreek leaves
- 200 grams paneer cubed (Indian cottage cheese)
- 2 to 3 tbsp cream (fresh cream or homemade malai, blended well)
- 2 tbsp coriander leaves
- 2 tbsps grated paneer
How to make the recipe
- Add tomatoes, red chilies, cashews, cinnamon stick, cloves and cardamoms to a pot or pan.
- Pour water and cook covered until tomatoes and spices turn soft and pulpy.
- Cool this and blend well till smooth in a mixer/ blender.
Making paneer lababdar gravy
- Heat oil in a pan, add bay leaf and saute for a min.
- Add onions and fry until they turn completely and uniformly golden.
- Add ginger garlic paste and saute till the raw smell goes away. This takes about 1 to 2 mins.
- Pour the tomato and spice puree to the pan.
- Add red chili powder, salt, coriander powder and garam masala. Mix and fry for about 2 to 3 mins.
- Cook covered until the gravy thickens.
- Pour water and sugar. Mix well. Cook covered on a medium heat until the gravy thickens and you see traces of oil over the gravy. Adjust salt and spice.
- Add kasuri methi, paneer and green chili. Mix well.
- Lower the flame completely and cook just for 1 to 2 mins.
- Pour cream and mix. Add coriander leaves and mix.
- Turn off the stove and keep the pan covered for 5 mins. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with grated paneer and coriander leaves.
- Serve paneer lababdar hot with roti, naan or rice.
NUTRITION (estimation only)
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
If you are new to cooking, follow my detailed step by step photo instructions for best results.
1. Add tomatoes, red chilies, cashews, cinnamon stick, cloves, cardamoms & half cup water to a pot. Do not skip red chilies as they lend a unique flavor. I used kashmiri red chilies. Boil until tomatoes turn soft. To quicken process you can also cover and cook. Tomatoes are boiled to add volume to the gravy & spices are boiled to bring out the aroma.
2. Cool completely. Add them to a blender jar along with the water that is left in the pot. Make a smooth puree and set this aside.
How to make paneer lababdar
3. Heat oil in a pan, add bay leaf and saute for a while. Add onions and fry until golden.
4. Add ginger garlic paste and saute till the raw smell goes off.
5. This may take 1 or 2 mins. Ginger garlic tends to get burnt quickly, so be cautious.
6. Pour the tomato puree to the pan. Add chili powder, coriander powder, salt and garam masala. I used this homemade garam masala. Mix everything well and saute for 2 to 3 mins.
7. Cook covered until the gravy thickens slightly.
8. Pour water just enough to make the gravy. I used half cup water. You can add little more or less as desired.
9. Add sugar. Mix well and cook covered until the gravy turns thick. You can also see traces of oil over the gravy. Taste the gravy and adjust salt and spice as desired.
10. Add kasuri methi, green chilli and paneer. Mix well. Cook for 1 to 2 mins on a very low flame.
11. Pour desired amount of cream. Mix well. Add coriander leaves. Mix and turn off the stove. Keep covered for at least 5 mins.
Serve paneer lababdar with rice, naan, roti, phulka.