This super easy, creamy, and delicious restaurant style butter paneer recipe is ready under 25 minutes. To enjoy the restaurant style Indian meal at home, try this effortless restaurant style butter paneer recipe which is cooked in your Instant Pot. As you taste it, you won’t believe that it is homemade.
What is Butter Paneer?
Butter Paneer or Paneer Butter Masala is a popular Indian curry. This curry ‘Butter Paneer’ aka Paneer Makhani is always tops the menu at Indian restaurants globally.
In this Butter Paneer recipe, paneer or cottage cheese is cooked in a mildly spiced, sweet, rich, butter onion tomato based gravy. Due to the addition of butter and cream, the texture of this curry is very smooth and silky.
Instant Pot Butter Paneer:
I love making Butter Paneer in the Instant Pot because of the effortlessness and ease. Some simple pressure cooking, blending, and little more cooking — as a result you get the pieces of soft paneer bathing in a rich and creamy sauce. Butter Paneer recipe can’t get easier than this.
You can also cook this Butter Paneer recipe in a stove top pressure cooker. I have given the recipe in the recipe box on this page.
Why to cook butter paneer in an Instant Pot (IP)?
Making butter paneer in Instant pot is very easy, quick and fuss-free. The authentic stovetop butter paneer recipe tastes great, but it is a little time taking because it involves many steps. Whereas, with this easy instant pot butter paneer recipe, you can make this curry within 25 minutes. An instant pot liner is all you need to make a rich, creamy and delicious restaurant style butter paneer dish.
Cook it when you have guests coming over for dinner on short notice. They won’t believe that you made this curry from scratch within 25 minutes. Yes, you heard it right, these 25 minutes include preparation time, cooking time – everything. Isn’t it wonderful?
With this recipe, there is no need to make separate onion paste, tomato paste, or ginger-garlic paste. Everything can be made in Instant Pot.
In this recipe, I have sautéed my onion, tomato, ginger-garlic and cashew and pressure cooked them with essential spices. And then finally blended into a creamy gravy. Then again this gravy is sauteed with cream till it becomes rich and thick. Lastly, I added paneer cubes which are simmered in the gravy.
What to expect from this Instant Pot Butter Paneer Recipe?
This tastes like the butter paneer masala curry you get at the restaurants. The texture of this curry is creamy, rich, and buttery. It is lightly spicy and mildly sweet.
What are the ingredients for Instant Pot Butter Paneer?
The ingredients are listed below.
Paneer: The star ingredient of this dish is Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese). Making your own fresh homemade paneer is very easy. If you don’t want to make paneer then you can simply buy it from a local Asian/Indian grocery store.
Butter: Butter is the second most important ingredient used in this recipe. There is no butter paneer without butter. You can use salted or unsalted butter.
Vegetable oil: In traditional recipes, oil is not used in butter paneer. But I like using the combination of butter and oil. This combination helps in giving the perfect richness and velvety texture to the recipe. Also, this is slightly lighter as compared to whole butter version of the recipe.
Whole Spices: Whole spices ( bay leaf, cloves, green cardamoms, cinnamon stick) are added to the gravy because they impart quintessential aromatic flavors into the sauce.
Powdered spices: There is no curry without spices. So spices are also a vital part of this curry recipe. Essential powder spices are added to this curry.
Tomatoes: You’ll need fresh and juicy tomatoes for making Instant pot butter paneer recipe. For a smooth texture of gravy, I try to remove the skin before adding them to my IP.
Tomato Puree: Adding tomato puree is completely optional. I add tomato puree because it adds rich color and a thick texture to the gravy. Also, it makes tomato flavoring more noticeable.
Onions: Diced onions are added directly to the IP. You can add red or yellow onions.
Ginger-Garlic: For this recipe, I have added chopped ginger and garlic. But you can easily replace it with ginger-garlic paste.
Cashew Nuts: I have added whole cashews in this butter paneer recipe. If you want to add cashew paste, you can make it by soaking cashews in warm water for 5 minutes and then grind to make a silky paste.
Cream: Malai aka fresh milk cream is used in traditional homemade butter paneer recipes. But in the restaurant style, butter paneer recipe, store bought milk cream is used. For this recipe, you can use 7% to 15% fat cream.
Other ingredients: Green chilies, Kasuri methi aka dried fenugreek leaves, salt, honey or sugar.
How to make Vegan Butter Paneer recipe?
The vegan version of butter paneer tastes incredibly delish. For making vegan butter paneer, replace paneer with firm tofu. Swap cream with vegan cream (preferably cashew cream) and butter with vegan butter. With this vegan paneer butter masala, the dish won’t be that heavy.
How to make Instant Pot Butter Paneer?
The cooking method of making Instant Pot Butter Paneer is slightly different than traditional butter paneer made in a pan. Making this curry is super easy and it gets ready in less than 25 minutes. It has a velvety, creamy, buttery texture and tastes just like the one you eat at your favorite Indian restaurant.
- Turn the Instant pot on with saute mode. Once hot, add butter and oil. Let it melt. Add cumin seeds and sauté for few seconds.
- Add cashews and sauté for 1 minute add green chilies, Kashmiri red chili, bay leaf and saute for few seconds or till you get a nice aroma of the spices.
- Add the onions and mix well. Add ginger, garlic, chopped tomatoes and mix well again. Sauté for 1 minute. Add tomato puree, powder spices, and salt.
- Now make a spice pouch with cinnamon sticks, green cardamom, and cloves using a cheesecloth. We don’t want whole spices to get mixed in when we blend the sauce, that’s why adding the whole spices to the cheesecloth is important. Add it to IP with onions and tomatoes.
- Cover the instant pot with lid, set the valve to sealing position. Cook on manual (high pressure) for 6 minutes.
- NPR (Natural pressure release) for 8 minutes. Once pin drops, open the lid. Remove the bay leaf and the spice pouch. Blend everything to make a smooth purée using an immersion blender. Now add Kasuri methi, garam masala powder, cream and mix everything well. Add honey and 1 tbsp butter. Mix well.
- Press sauté mode and cook for 2 minutes. Add paneer and cook for 3-4 minutes, or heat until the paneer is heated through. Lastly, add chopped cilantro leaves. Transfer into a serving dish. Garnish with cream, coriander leaves and serve.
Can I freeze butter paneer sauce?
Yes, you can. This sauce freezes well. Freeze it in a freezer safe container, and when it is time to serve, thaw it at room temperature.
Give it a boil (add some water, if needed). This curry’s flavors gets milder after freezing, so feel free to add some garam masala and cream to spruce up the flavors. Cook for about 5 minutes. Finally, add chunks of paneer. Boil for 2 minutes and done.
How to serve Butter Paneer?
This Instant Pot butter paneer can be served with the side of garlic naan, plain naan, tandoori roti, lachha paratha or even with steamed basmati rice, or jeera rice.
To balance the spicy and hot flavors in the meal, accompany it with some sweet mango lassi — just the way you enjoy butter paneer masala at your favorite restaurant. This is the best way to delight in a restaurant-style Indian meal in the comfort of your home.
Tips for making Instant Pot Butter Paneer:
- Don’t cut paneer into very big cubes, because they won’t absorb all the flavors of the sauce.
- Adding Kasuri methi is recommended, it adds a great aroma to the buttery sauce.
- I added honey to the sauce, you can also add some sugar, or if you wish, you can completely avoid any kind of sweeteners.
- To make it vegan you can swap paneer with tofu. Use vegan butter as a substitute for butter and cashew cream instead of regular cream.
- I have blended my sauce using an immersion blender, but you can also use a regular blender. If you are planning to use a regular blender then take out the cooked tomato onions and add it the blender jar, then blend.
- I prefer removing tomato skin before pressure cooking, this gives a smooth sauce. So I would highly recommend it.