Completely Unauthentic Paneer Tawa Masala

As far as I can tell, paneer tawa masala, is a Hindi/Punjabi term that translates roughly as “Fried, spiced, cheese”. The general idea with tawa masala appears to be: protein + tomato + cream + spices. It’s similar to butter chicken, but more frying and less cream.

This variant is somewhat simplified to make it easier for someone without a walk-in closet worth of spices, and a little cauliflower has been added. You can also replace the cheese with chicken if you approve of animal murder.


  • 350 g paneer cheese, in 1–2 cm cubes

  • 30 ml + 30 ml oil

  • 1 onion, chopped

  • 200 g cauliflower, chopped

  • 5 ml cumin, powder

  • 10 ml garlic, crushed

  • 5 ml coriander, powder

  • 250 ml crushed tomato

  • 15 ml garam masala

  • 30 ml dairy cream or yogurt

  • Handful of cilantro, chopped


  • In a large frying pan, heat 30 ml oil, and then fry cheese until brown.

  • Set the cheese aside.

  • In the same frying pan, add the chopped onion, cauliflower, and the remaining 30 ml oil. Fry until the cauliflower is soft.

  • Add cumin, garlic, and coriander. If your crushed tomatoes are no/low salt, you could supplement salt as well. Mix for 1 minute.

  • Add crushed tomato.

  • Add fried panner, garam masala and cream/yogurt.

  • Garnish with cilantro.

This pairs well with naan.