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Palak Paneer with basmati rice

30 Minute Palak Paneer

  • Author: Megan B-L
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Category: Entree


Indian cheese chunks in a flavorful, lightly creamy spinach sauce, served with basmati rice. So fast and so easy!



Palak Paneer

  • 5 cups fresh spinach, packed
  • 15 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 jalapeño, roughly chopped (see Notes)
  • ½ inch ginger, peeled & roughly chopped
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • ¾ teaspoon garam masala
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1216 ounces paneer, chopped into ~½-inch squares
  • ¼ cup half & half

Basmati Rice

  • 2 cups basmati rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  1. First, start the rice. Add basmati rice to the pot and cover with an inch of water. Run your fingers through the rice in circular and figure eight motions. (We’re getting rid of extra starch here.) Drain cloudy water. Do this 4 times until water is clear (or mostly clear). Drain. Add 4 cups water, butter, and salt, and bring to a boil on high heat. Once boiling, cover and reduce heat to low for 15–20 minutes. Turn off heat, fluff with a fork, and leave covered until you’re ready to eat. 
  2. While rice is cooking, make the sauce. Add tomatoes & spinach to a blender & puree. You may have to do this in segments if you have an older blender.
  3. Sauté jalapeño, ginger, and onion in a sauté pan for 8-10 minutes. Halfway through, add the garlic and spices, including the salt.
  4. Transfer sautéed ingredients to the blender, adding apple cider vinegar. Blend with tomato/spinach puree until it is smooth.
  5. Return puree to sauté pan on medium low. Add the paneer and half & half, mix until all is combined.
  6. Heat on low for 10 minutes to let paneer warm and flavors develop.
  7. Serve rice and palak paneer together—enjoy!


  • The equipment section above contains affiliate links to products that could help you make this recipe!
  • About the jalapeño—the ribs (light part inside) and seeds are what makes a jalapeño spicy. If you want more spice, leave the ribs intact and include some seeds. If you want a more mild dish, remove both. 
  • Easily make this vegan by subbing extra firm tofu or garbanzo beans for paneer and coconut cream for half & half!
  • Chunks of cooked chicken could also be a good sub for paneer. 

Keywords: indian, spinach, paneer, naan