Palak Methi Paneer is the most popular North Indian dish. The combination of Indian cottage cheese and fresh palak (spinach) and methi (fenugreek) puree spiced with onion and herbs is simply exquisite. This authentic Saag paneer is a simple yet nutrient rich dish. Palak Methi paneer goes well with roti, naan or rice making it a perfect weeknight meal.
Hello guys, I am finally sharing the most famous, most popular Indian paneer dish “Saag Paneer” or “Palak Methi Paneer” but with a healthy twist of course.
Palak stands for spinach, methi stands for fenugreek leaves and paneer stands for “Indian Cottage cheese”. So basically soft and fresh cottage cheese is cooked in delicious spinach-fenugreek gravy that cooked in beautifully spiced onion-tomato masala and garam masala.
As a kid my mom never had trouble feeding me veggies (yes! yes! I was a very good girl), as much as I was easy she had the hardest time when it came to my sister. But surprisingly my baby sis never said no to this delicious spinach curry loaded with paneer.
One thing my mom always did while making palak paneer is adding fresh fenugreek leaves. It just takes this dish to the next level. Adds an extra oomph to this dish. Enhances the flavour of the dish.
I love this paneer preparation as it is very comforting and is a perfectly balanced and nutritious meal. It has proteins and a good amount of greens like spinach and fenugreek leaves. A single serving of this delicious Palak Methi Paneer will probably give you more greens than anyone would have in a whole week.
The best thing is my toddler loves it and nothing makes me more happier. Now I feel how my mum felt back then.
Ingredients to make Saag Paneer.
- Paneer (if you are unable to find store bought paneer, why not make it at home by following my easy Homemade Paneer recipe. Any ways homemade paneer is always better than store bought.
- Fenugreek leaves
- Green Chillies
- Ginger-garlic paste
- Turmeric powder
- Chilli powder
- Hing (Asofoetida)
- Ghee/oil/butter ( I cooked my palak methi paneer in ghee)
- Cream optional
Can we use frozen spinach and frozen methi leaves?
Yes! You can make this saag paneer with frozen spinach and fenugreek leaves too. Simply defrost or thaw the leaves and squeeze out the water and weigh them. And follow the rest of the procedure to make saag paneer.
Can we make vegan Saag Paneer?
Yes we can. Simply substitute fresh paneer with delicious silky tofu. Skip adding ghee or butter or cream to the dish. Instead prepare the dish with sunflower/vegetable oil.
How to make Saag Paneer at home?
Palak Methi Paneer is pretty simple and easy forward. Firstly to prepare the Spinach-fenugreek puree, Heat water in a pan and blanch the washed palak and methi for 2-3 minutes. Drain the water and immediately add cold water to the leaves and let it sit for few minutes. Doing this helps retain the green colour of the spinach.
Next drain and add the spinach-fenugreek leaves along with green chillies. Just blend all these ingredients into a fine silky smooth green paste.
Let’s see how to make Palak methi paneer masala
Heat ghee or oil large pan on medium heat. When hot add the cubed paneer pieces and lightly fry the paneer pieces until golden on the sides. Remove with a slotted spoon. I like to lightly saute my paneer before adding it to the gravy. But you can skip this step and add the paneer directly to palak gravy in the end. You can soak the paneer cubes in hot water for 15-20 minutes prior adding to the saag gravy.
Add the rest of the ghee and temper it with cumin seeds and dry red chilli. Then add chopped onion and fry until golden brown and soft. Add ginger garlic paste and saute until smell disappears. Next toss in the chopped tomatoes and fry until soft and mushy and the oil seeps through the masala add the turmeric powder and red chilli powder and continut sautéing.
Add the pureed greens, salt along with 3/4th cup of water and mix. Simmer for 7-8 minutes. The gravy looks a bit thick by now, add garam masala and a tsp of butter and mix. Add in the fried paneer and continue cooking for 2-3 minutes.
Now take it off the heat and top it up with some fresh single cream (optional) and coriander leaves and serve it with roti, naan or rice.
Here are some paneer recipe that you can try.
Palak Methi Paneer (Saag Paneer)
Palak Methi Paneer
- large thick bottomed pan
- mixer grinder
- 350 gms Palak leaves /spinach washed
- 150 gms Fenugreek leaves / Methi leaves washed
- 2-3 Green chillies
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- 4-5 cups Water
For the Palak Methi Paneer
- 200-250 gms Paneer (cottage cheese)** cut in small cubes
- 1 large Onion finely chopped approx 1 cup
- 2 small Tomatoes chopped
- 1 tbsp Ginger-Garlic paste
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp Red chilli powder
- 1 tsp Cumin seeds
- 1-2 Dried red Chilli
- Pinch of hing (asofoetida)
- 1/2 tsp Garam masala powder
- Salt as per taste
- 2 tbsp Ghee/oil I have used ghee to make saag paneer
- 1 tsp Butter
- 1 tbsp Single cream for topping optional
- handful Coriander leaves
To prepare the Spinach (palak) Puree
- Mix the spinach and fenugreek together and blanch in a large pot of boiling water for 2- 3 minutes.
- Drain the water and add cold water to the spinach and fenugreek leaves and let it sit for some time.
- Now drain the cold water and add the leaves along with green chillies in a mixer grinder and ground it into a smooth puree and keep it aside.
To make creamy Saag Paneer
- Heat 1 tbsp ghee/oil large pan on medium heat. When hot add the cubed paneer pieces and lightly fry the paneer pieces until golden on the sides. remove with a slotted spoon.
- Add the rest of the ghee/oil in the pan and temper it with cumin seeds and dried red chilli.
- Next add in the chopped onions and sauté until soft and golden.
- Add the ginger garlic paste and sauté until the raw smell disappears.
- Stir in the chopped tomatoes and sauté until soft.
- Once the tomatoes are soft and mushy and you see oil seeping out from the masala, add the turmeric powder and red chilli powder and continut sautéing.
- Add the spinach and methi puree along with 3/4 cup of water and salt to the prepared masala and mix well. Now cover and cook on low flame for 6-8 minutes.
- Now stir in the garam masala and a cube of butter in the palak methi gravy and continue cooking for 1 minute.
- Now add in the fried paneer and mix well. Cook for 3-4 minutes
- Take it off the heat and garnish with cream and butter and chopped coriander leaves. Serve it hot with rotis or rice.
I hope you enjoy this delicious Palak Methi Paneer (Saag Paneer) as much as we do!