Badami paneer is a rich and exotic Indian curry that you’ve got to try if you love Indian Vegetarian curries. Paneer i.e Indian cottage cheese is cooked in aromatic almond based sauce and Indian spices. Badami paneer is a high protein North Indian curry that is humble enough for your everyday meal and luxurious enough for treating your guests with something special.
Today I will show you how easy it is to make this creamy paneer curry at home with basic ingredients and under 20 minutes. Yes, you will be amazed how easy it is to make this paneer recipe at home without elaborate cooking or ingredient list. This is one of my back-pocket paneer recipes that I can make in a flash when I am pressed on time. Hope you like this short cut method which will give you same results as the tedious one.
One more reason to share this Badami paneer curry recipe is that you won’t find it on a restaurant menu or may be you will find it only on a high-end restaurant menu only. This curry uses almonds instead of cashews and most of the restaurants cannot afford making it. So do give this easy paneer recipe a try at home!! It’s healthy and delicious too. Serve with a side of homemade / store-bought parathas or naan . Some steamed basmati rice or biryani goes well with Badami Paneer gravy too.
Growing up in a vegetarian family paneer is extensively used in our home. This is because paneer is a good source of protein and a delicious ingredient to incorporate in your daily diet. My mom makes paneer recipes at least 3 times a week and so do I.
My favorite being Palak Paneer and this versatile paneer masala that I use for sandwiches , quesadillas , puff pastry , dosas and parathas. And did you try my Pepper paneer curry in yogurt gravy?? OMG!! It’s so different from the regular paneer masalas and to die for!
Paneer is fattening – A myth or reality?
If you thought paneer is fattening and you shouldn’t indulge in it quite often, then my friend you are absolutely wrong!!!
Paneer is a soft fresh cheese made from curdling milk . It has a high amount of protein content and calcium in it.
If you buy the store paneer that explicitly say malai paneer then it is calorie laden because it’s made with some amount of cream ( malai ) as well.
Homemade paneer from full fat or part skim milk is the best. But if you don’t have a lot of time on hand like me and believe in shortcuts then use store-bought paneer that is made only with milk and have no added cream.
Some health benefits of paneer –
I love using paneer in our daily meals because –
It’s a great source of vegetarian protein
It keeps us full for a longer time hence curbing those mid snack cravings.
It’s a good option for diabetic people as it doesn’t spike up blood sugar levels.
( Personal experience – I ate paneer everyday during my pregnancy when I was detected with Gestational Diabetes. It kept me satisfied for a longer time and controlled my blood sugar levels too. )
Paneer is a great addition to your Low carb diet.
How to make quick and easy paneer curry?
The ease of making Badami Paneer Curry relies heavily on the ingredient list.
Forget about soaking and blanching almonds. That is not fun when you have to put dinner on the table under 20 minutes. Instead go for Almond Flour (not almond meal). It is a total game changer in a recipe.
Are you excited for the second ingredient??
It is Tomato sauce ( canned tomato sauce) and not ketchup .
Tomato sauce is already cooked and packed for you. Using canned sauce will save you at least 30 extra minutes to make this curry gravy. Your family will think you have simmered this curry for hours.
The combination of tomato sauce and Almond flour yields amazing Indian style gravy in minutes and without much time.
Third ingredient –
Basic Indian spices that are in your pantry.
We are not going to roast whole spices and create masala . No no , that can be achieved with store-bought garam masala and spices sitting in your spice box. Isn’t that easy peasy??
Step by step making of the quickest Badami Paneer Curry –
I like this almond gravy with few veggies . But adding onions and bell pepper are optional. You may directly go for the gravy and just add pan fried or steamed paneer .
You can even add other veggies like carrots, baby corn , peas, potatoes , green beans , cauliflower to the gravy . You will need to cook them separately and then add it to the almond gravy.
I highly recommend Almond flour instead of raw almonds to save yourself from soaking, blanching and pureeing it . This will only add to the time taken and extra effort!
Store bought tomato sauce is what you need to make this curry taste spot on in less time . Fresh tomato puree will take over 30 minutes to cook well. You may use store bought tomato puree too but it won’t give you smooth texture of the gravy. If that doesn’t bother you go ahead ! If you are using tomato puree and not the sauce you can even blend the mixture in the blender after it cools and go ahead with the recipe. This will just take a lot of time say 30 minutes extra.
I have used few tablespoons heavy cream for this recipe. If you are weary about it then you may use yogurt or full fat milk too.
Frying paneer before adding is totally optional. You may directly add paneer or steam it and add to the gravy.
Best Badami Paneer ( Cottage Cheese in Almond Gravy ) recipe-
Badami Paneer Curry ( Exotic Indian curry under 20 minutes)
- 250 grams paneer cubed and pan fried if desired.
- 1 tablespoon ghee / oil of choice
- Pinch of hing / asafetida
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon minced / grated ginger
- ½ cup chopped onions big chunks
- ½ cup chopped bell pepper big chunks
- ¾ cup canned tomato sauce not ketchup see notes
- 1.5 tablespoon almond flour
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder/ cayenne paprika for mild spice
- 1.5 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon coriander powder
- ¼ teaspoon turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- 4 tablespoons heavy cream / malai * see notes
- ¾ cup milk
- ½ cup water or more to adjust consistency
- ¼ teaspoon cardamom powder
- ½ teaspoon sugar/ honey/ agave for sweetness
- 1 teaspoon crushed kasoori methi
- Salt to taste
In a wide skillet heat up ghee. Once hot add in the ginger garlic and sauté for 30 seconds.
Add in onion and bell pepper chunks and sauté for 1 minute
Add in tomato sauce and almond flour and stir continuously for 1 minute for almond flour to cook through.
Add in water and stir once.
Lower the heat to low setting .
Cover the pan with a lid and let it simmer for 5 minutes.
Open the lid and add the spices and salt to taste.
Cook for 2 minutes.
Slowly pour in the cream, a tablespoon at a time and keep stirring the gravy.
Add in room temperature milk slowly while stirring the gravy to avoid any curdling or splattering.
Cook covered for 2 minutes.
Now add in cardamom, sugar and kasoori methi .
Give a taste test and add paneer
Let it cook for 3-4 minutes covered on low heat.
You may sub canned tomato sauce with store bought crushed tomatoes or puree. Fresh tomato puree won’t work in this recipe. Refer to my explanation in the post question above the recipe.
The spice level of this paneer curry in almond gravy is 4/5, 5 being hot. Adjust the spices according to your taste.
Use almond flour and not almond meal.
You may substitute almond flour with almond or cashew paste.
Replace heavy cream with equal amount of beaten yogurt.
Add milk or water to adjust the consistency of the gravy. The gravy will thicken as it cools.
Adding onions and pepper is optional.
The almond gravy is rich creamy and versatile . You can even add other veggies like carrots, baby corn, peas, potatoes , green beans , cauliflower to the gravy . You will need to cook them separately and then add it to the almond gravy.
Other delicious Paneer Recipes that you might like-
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