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How to make Paneer / Cottage Cheese at home

>> Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Paneer / Cottage Cheese, the most versatile ingredient in Indian, especially vegetarian cooking is easily available in all Indian grocery stores. So, why bother making it at home??! Well, there are a couple of good reasons, at least for me. First of all, the ones that you get in stores has this rubbery texture to it. Even though you can live with it, the homemade paneer has a different fresh texture and taste and absorbs the flavour better than the store bought ones. Now especially with paneer, which doesn't have any particular taste to it, this is a very important factor. Second is the cost factor – you will easily spend 6-7 bucks for a block of paneer where as a similar quantity can be made at home with about a gallon of milk which is anywhere between 2-3 $. I know, I know its not a HUGE difference. But don't you feel good when you get better quality and better tasting product for lesser price and the best thing is the satisfaction of making paneer at home! Hope at least some of you agree with me :)


You will need:

1/2 gallon 2% milk – whole milk will be better
2 oz (1/4 cup) distilled white vinegar ( you can use equal amount lime/lemon juice also)

A heavy bottomed pan
a colander
cheese cloth, to strain
heavy pans/canned food/other heavy things as weights


Heat the milk in a heavy bottomed pan/cast iron pan on medium heat. Keep stirring so that the milk doesnt stick to the bottom of the pan. Just when the milk starts steaming and just before it comes to a boil, add the vinegar to it. The milk will curdle and you will see something like whats shown in the photo below.

IMG_3673 Now strain this on a cheese cloth spread over a colander. If you want you can collect the whey (the liquid part) for later use.


Wait for sometime till the water drains out completely and then take out the cheese cloth. Place a plate or a chopping board in the sink, place the cheesecloth folded on top it. Place another plate and put some cans of food or a heavy pan on top of it as weights. After about an hour – hour and a half, remove the plates and weights and take out the block of paneer. Chop into small pieces and store or store as it is in the refrigerator for later use. Here are some recipes using paneer :
Paneer Makhani / Paneer Butter Masala – An Easier Version
Paneer Butter Masala on a Pizza
Palak Paneer
Paneer Pulao


Madhu December 23, 2009 at 7:03 PM  

Love home made paneer, its really hard to go back to store brought ones, once you get the taste of fresh hm paneer.
Like the pics and texture, looks wonderful.

jayashree December 23, 2009 at 9:28 PM  

Though I agree fully well with your view, somewhere along the way, it is back to old habits... resort to store bought.

Arch December 23, 2009 at 9:49 PM  

Here in Ahmedabad, we get excellent paneer, but yes, when the milk is not so good, I make paneer out of it - like the blocks that have turned out, mine is always more crumbly, never kept weights on it !

Indhu December 23, 2009 at 10:12 PM  

lovely post... I have been postponing buying paneer for a long time now - that rubbery taste puts me off too .. maybe its time to start making at home

Priya December 24, 2009 at 1:29 AM  

U got a beautiful paneer log Manju...lovely post..

Aux délices des gourmets December 24, 2009 at 8:16 AM  

ton blog est superbe avec de très belles photos j'espère te visiter régulièrement
à bientôt

chakhlere December 24, 2009 at 11:02 AM  

Thanks for that recipe. Is whole milk necessary for this?

jayasri December 24, 2009 at 11:44 AM  

lovely photo shoot, planning to make it tomorrow, looks great!!

PJ December 24, 2009 at 12:03 PM  

Making paneer at home seems easier than what I thought it would be :) I am going to give this a try soon, thanks for sharing the photo tutorial!

AdukalaVishesham December 24, 2009 at 12:49 PM  

lovely post.. will give it a try...

Preety December 24, 2009 at 1:57 PM  

Merry X'mas & Happy New Year

Red Chillies December 24, 2009 at 9:17 PM  

Looks good... wishing you and your family Happy Holidays!

Cham December 24, 2009 at 10:52 PM  

Homemade is better than the chewy paneer we get in store! Good tutorial !

D. @ Outside Oslo December 24, 2009 at 11:27 PM  

It's always inspiring to hear about people making their own cheese; I've never tried it, but maybe I should!

Thanks for visiting Outside Oslo and for commenting on the guest post by Jenn/The Leftover Queen. I hope you'll visit again!

radha December 26, 2009 at 5:18 AM  

Came over, since I saw your blog featured in the Foodie Blogroll. Lovely blog you have here.

Ms.Chitchat December 27, 2009 at 2:40 AM  

You are 100% right re. the taste and the economics :):) You have a wonderful space with interesting recipes.


Shabs.. December 28, 2009 at 5:33 AM  

Hi dear...
just loved teh look of ur paneer...i have been thinking about this stuff ever since i saw ur pic in my dashboard....
Would surely be trying this one day!!...

Well, u have one award at my space...please collect it:)

Shabs.. December 28, 2009 at 5:34 AM  

I have book marked it to try...:)

girlichef December 28, 2009 at 4:34 PM  

Oh!! It's beautiful...and I definitely agree about making it at home. I actually started another blog a bit ago just focusing on home cheese (& dairy) making!! I'd love to feature this post on there, if you'd allow me to!! Email me if you get a minute & let me know your thoughts on it :) thx, Heather (girlichef at yahoo dot com)

Danielle December 29, 2009 at 11:19 AM  

what a wonderful recipe and so simple. it would seem silly not to make it yourself. I've seen recipes that called for paneer and never really knew what it is. Thank you!

jayasri December 31, 2009 at 1:39 AM  

Hi superchef, I am back again to give my best wishes for a very happy new year dear, wishing you all the joy,happiness and wonderful years ahead, Keep posting lovely recipes like this and love to see more creations from your blog...

Lena Rashmin Raj January 3, 2010 at 2:16 AM  

Wish you a very happy new year dear.. :)
this is a very useful snap..it looks like milk burfi.. :)when i make im never abletocut it neatly..i wont get exact cubes, especially i have problem with those sides..

Hb January 3, 2010 at 8:09 PM  

This recipe should be tried by me. And have a joyful year :D

chocolatecup January 7, 2010 at 11:53 AM  

<3 paneer! may make it if i muster up all the courage in the world:)

shahnaza January 10, 2010 at 7:57 PM  

Thank you very much for your recepie.
It is simple, easy and productive.

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