Paneer Tikka

// Learn how to make succulent paneer tikka at home! A healthy, gluten-free dish with crispy edges, soft inside. Perfect for BBQs.



Paneer Tikka is a popular Indian appetizer or starter made using paneer cubes and veggies marinated with yogurt and spices. This traditional paneer tikka recipe is grilled in a tandoor (Indian clay oven).

With this easy recipe, you can make Restaurant Style Tandoori Paneer Tikka recipe four ways - in an Oven, on a Tawa/Pan, on a Grill, or in a Panini Maker.

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Charred paneer tikka skewers served with a side of green chutney on a white plate, with a moody dark backdrop.

On this page, I have shared a step-by-step picture recipe and a video recipe on how to make an easy Paneer Tikka recipe. Plus, four ways to cook it with perfection using an oven, pan, grill, and panini maker.

About Paneer Tikka 

Paneer Tikka is a beloved appetizer or snack dish prepared with Paneer (Indian cottage cheese). It is a popular choice for vegetarians and cheese lovers alike.

This easy paneer tikka recipe involves marinating chunks of paneer in a tantalizing mixture that includes garam masala, among other spices, ensuring that each bite of tikka is bursting with tempting flavors.

Once marinated, the paneer and veggies can be grilled or baked, making it a versatile option for any meal.

The Tandoori Paneer Tikka easy recipe is the perfect starter, appetizer, snack, or even a great dinner for tandoori tikka lovers.

In India, a party without tandoori starters is not a party at all. Be it a get-together, barbecue, or dinner parties, tandoori dishes are a must.

When we talk about starters or appetizers, then one of the first dishes that come to everyone’s mind is tikka. Here, tikka is especially favored because it has that ideal mingle of spices.

The smoky flavor of the marinated and tandoor-cooked paneer is simply jaw-dropping. Hard to describe in words, one has to taste it to live that inexpressible feeling.

This is a great starter option whether you are feeding a crowd or simply feeding your family. Your guests will surely relish the real flavors of this tikka utterly, so be ready to hear some wows!

Paneer tikka sticks, also known as paneer skewers BBQ, are a fantastic way to enjoy this dish outdoors. Whether you’re using a traditional tandoor, grill, or opting for a paneer tikka recipe in the oven, these skewers make for a perfect party appetizer or a main course. Pairing them with mint chutney enhances the flavors and adds a refreshing touch.

A close-up of succulent paneer tikka skewers, charred and golden, with layers of onion and bell pepper, presented on a white plate with crinkled white paper.

Easy paneer tikka recipe

Today, I am sharing the best recipe for restaurant style paneer tikka you will ever cook at home. It has the same taste you get at your favorite restaurant. And the good thing is that this recipe can easily be replicated at home without a tandoor.

Yes, it is possible to have that restaurant-style taste in Tandoori Tikka with the simple kitchen gadgets you have, such as a tawa/pan, home oven, panini/grilled sandwich maker, or just with a simple disposable grill.

So, in short, roasting a tikka to charred perfection is very much possible at home.

I love the homemade tandoori paneer tikka because it is so easy to prepare and tastes so incredible just like you get at the restaurants.

What is paneer tikka

This post explains everything about paneer tikka, such as how it is different from paneer tikka masala, many possible ways of grilling it, etc.

This is one of the most favored menu items at Indian restaurants worldwide. It is one of those dishes that you usually find at any Indian restaurant, small or big. Moreover, this dish is often the star of the menu. Thus, it will be at the top of the menu list.

It is an Indian appetizer where paneer chunks are marinated with a fiery yogurt mixture and then authentically grilled in a Tandoor, which is the name for the traditional North Indian clay oven.

It is a great vegetarian alternative to non-vegetarian dishes such as Chicken Tikka, Fish Tikka, or any other satay.

Overhead shot of tandoori paneer tikka skewers with a bowl of green chutney and a salad, on a rustic surface.

What is Tikka

Tikka is a dish made with small chunks of meat or vegetables that are first marinated in a spicy yogurt mixture and then roasted in a clay oven.

Paneer Tikka Ingredients 

  • Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese): It is the main ingredient of this dish. Paneer is a fresh, non-melting Indian cheese known for its mild flavor and firm texture, making it a perfect base for absorbing rich marinades.

Its non-melting property makes it suitable for the high heat of grilling.

  • Hung Curd: Strained yogurt or hung curd acts as the base of the marinade, giving a creamy texture and tangy taste that blends well with the spices. The thickness of hung curd also helps in evenly coating the paneer and vegetables.

  • Ginger Garlic Paste: This ginger garlic paste is another main ingredient used in Indian cuisine, adding pungency, warmth, and aromatic flavor to the cheese tikka.

  • Besan (Gram Flour): Besan, or gram flour, is used to thicken the marinade, helping in coating the paneer and vegetables while adding a subtle, nutty flavor.

  • Mustard Oil: Used for its strong and pungent aroma and high smoking point, mustard oil gives this paneer tikka its authentic North Indian flavor, aiding in grilling the tikka to perfection.

Mustard oil is used in both the marinade and for brushing the paneer and vegetables before grilling. The oil layer on top prevents sticking and helps achieve a golden, crispy exterior.

  • Spices: I have used red chili powder for heat, chaat masala powder for pungency and zesty flavor, garam masala powder for an aromatic touch, turmeric powder for mild and earthy flavors, and roasted cumin powder for a warming essence. Salt and black salt enhance the taste, black pepper powder adds a spicy kick, and Kasuri methi contributes an earthy taste.

  • Vegetables: Onions are added for crunch, and bell peppers for sweetness and crunch, giving a nice contrast, color, and flavor to the soft paneer.

Variations

Paneer Tikka in Air Fryer

If you enjoy dishes cooked in an air fryer, you can try making paneer tikka in one. For a modern twist on this classic dish, use an air fryer to grill paneer tikka. It is a quicker alternative, retaining the delicious taste while reducing the amount of oil needed.

Vegan Paneer Tikka

It is a vegetarian, keto-friendly, and gluten-free dish. However, if you follow a vegan diet, you can make vegan paneer tikka by swapping paneer with tofu and dairy yogurt with soy yogurt.

Paneer Tikka Sandwich

You can also fill it between slices of bread smeared with ketchup and green chutney, and then grill or toast it. Your tandoori paneer tikka sandwich is ready.

Paneer Tikka Masala

If you love paneer gravies, then you can make a gravy-based variant of this dish, which is paneer tikka masala.

Serving suggestions 

This tikka is a versatile dish that can be served as a starter or an appetizer along with chutney and sliced onions.

To serve paneer tikka, simply sprinkle some chaat masala and drizzle some lemon juice. Serve it hot along with green coriander chutney or mint coriander chutney, accompanied by some laccha onion. The flavorful chutney and the crunch of the onion elevate the taste and flavor.

Other than enjoying it on its own, it can also be wrapped in naan or paratha, or served as a side dish. It can also be used as a filling in a sandwich, or as toppings for naan pizza or tortizza.

What is Paneer

Paneer is an Indian version of cottage cheese that is made with only two ingredients. You curdle full cream milk with any of the following agents: lemon juice, white vinegar, yogurt, or buttermilk. You can make it at home, or you can use store-bought.

A tantalizing close-up of paneer tikka skewers with a wedge of lime, ready to be served.

How to Make Paneer at Home

Here’s how to make paneer at home: First, boil fresh milk.

Add your desired agent and allow the milk to curdle. Drain the whey and rinse with ice-cold water. Wrap it in a cheesecloth and put it under pressure. Paneer is ready to use. Cut into desired cubes and make your favorite paneer dish. You can find the detailed version of the homemade paneer recipe here.

What is the Difference Between Paneer Tikka and Paneer Tikka Masala?

Paneer Tikka is a dry dish that is served as an appetizer. Paneer Tikka Masala is a gravy dish made with paneer tikka and usually served with naan or rice.

Four Different Super Easy Ways of Making Tandoori Paneer Tikka

Cooking tandoori tikka in the oven is still a serious matter for many people in India. They wonder, “Hello! Tandoori Paneer Tikka at home without a tandoor? In the home oven? In a pan? In a panini maker? Is it even possible?”

Yes, people are very particular about paneer dishes, especially the tandoori ones.

For many folks, it has to be just perfect, the way they get it in restaurants. Many of my friends have been asking about this recipe for a long time, so here I am with four tikka roasting options for those who want a foolproof recipe.

I know no one wants to mess up a tikka dish; that’s why this fail-proof recipe is for you. And trust me, these simple hacks can really make your cooking experience way easier.

For those looking to prepare paneer tikka in an oven, the recipe is straightforward and convenient. By arranging the marinated paneer on skewers and baking them until golden brown, you can achieve delicious grilled paneer at home.

This method is perfect for creating paneer tikkas that are both succulent and aromatic.

If you like paneer dishes, then you would also like to check out these amazing recipes: Paneer Khurchan, Palak Paneer, Paneer Korma, Paneer Do Pyaza, Paneer Jalfrezi,, paneer pasanda, and Paneer Lababdar.

Dramatic close-up of a skewers of paneer tikka with a bokeh effect, emphasizing the textures and colors.

How to Make Paneer Tikka at Home

Making this dish tikka at home is very simple and easy. For this recipe, I have cooked the tikka in four ways (oven, pan, grill, panini maker). This is how you can make your restaurant style paneer tikka recipe at home.

Cut paneer into cubes, onion into petals, & dice capsicum. Prepare marinade. Then, for paneer tikka marination, marinate the paneer and vegetables.

Thread paneer and veggies on a skewer. Cook paneer tikka in a pan/tawa. Bake paneer tikka in an oven. Grill paneer tikka in a panini or sandwich maker. Grill paneer tikka on an open grill.

How to Make Paneer Tikka Recipe in the Oven

For making it in the oven, simply follow these steps:

Preheat the oven & arrange skewers on a baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes. Broil on high for 1-2 minutes. Remove the pan with the skewers out of the oven. Done.

Isn’t it fairly simple and quick? You can check out a detailed recipe in the recipe box on this page.

How to make Tandoori Paneer Tikka in a Grill

Grilling on a disposable grill:

Brush skewers with oil. Then grill the tikkas till char and cook through.

Grilling In A Panini/ Sandwich Maker:

Brush the grill plates lightly with oil. Place the tikka skewers and grill for about 3-4 minutes on each side.

How to Make Tandoori Paneer Tikka in a Pan (Tawa)

Lightly brush a tawa with oil. Place the tikka skewers on it and grill until the juices run clear. For charred perfection, place the roasted tikka on a papad roaster. Done.

You can check out all these cooking methods in the recipe box on this page.

How to Cook Paneer Tikka

It can be cooked on the stovetop using a tawa or grill pan. It can also be grilled using an open grill or panini maker. Additionally, it can be baked and then broiled in an oven.

How to Make Paneer Tikka in a Microwave

You might be wondering if you can make Paneer Tikka in a Microwave oven? Yes, you can. Marinate the paneer and thread it onto a wooden skewer. Brush all sides with some oil. Arrange it on a greased microwavable plate. Microwave uncovered on high heat for 2-3 minutes.

Flip and microwave again on high for another 2-3 minutes and serve.

Tandoori Paneer Tikka on Tawa/Pan

This easy and quick Tandoori Paneer Tikka recipe shows how you can impress your guests by making this beloved party starter at home.

It can be quickly and simply made using a simple non-stick tawa (tawa) or a grill pan, achieving the same charred perfection you get in tandoori tikka.

 colorful and inviting shot of paneer tikka skewers on a plate with green chutney and salad, against a dark blue backdrop.

Anupama’s Tips and Tricks for Making the Best Restaurant-Style Paneer Tikka at Home

  1. Cooking: There are many ways to cook this tikka at home. You can grill this tandoori paneer tikka, cook it in a tandoor, in a pan, or in the oven.

  2. Soft Paneer: The paneer should be soft, succulent, and thoroughly cooked. However, do not overcook the paneer tikka, or else the paneer will become chewy like rubber, which would not be very appetizing.

  3. Marinate: Allow it to marinate for at least 30 minutes. If you have extra time, you can marinate the vegetables and paneer for 2 hours or even longer if you wish. The longer it sits in the marinade, the more it absorbs the flavors.

  4. Vegetables: I have used onions and bell peppers for this recipe, but you can also add tomatoes, baby corn, zucchini, and mushrooms.

  5. Flour: Do not forget to add besan (gram flour) to the marinade; this step ensures that the paneer and veggies coat well and stick to the pan.

  6. Oil: Paneer tikka becomes dry while baking and grilling, so make sure to brush the tikkas with a sufficient amount of oil.

  7. Non-stick Pan: Try to use a non-stick tawa when cooking in a pan to prevent sticking to the bottom.

  8. Yogurt: The traditional recipe uses hung curd, but if you prefer not to use hung curd, you can also use Greek yogurt or Turkish yogurt.

FAQ

Is Paneer Tikka Healthy or Unhealthy?

If you’re wondering whether paneer tikka is healthy, then we have good news: paneer tikka is considered a healthy option for many diets. It is made with little oil and wholesome ingredients, and it can be served with a side of vegetables.

Is Paneer Tikka Gluten-Free?

Yes, paneer tikka is an inherently gluten-free dish as it doesn’t contain any gluten-containing flour or spices.

What is the Ideal Texture and Taste of Paneer Tikka?

In a perfect paneer tikka dish, paneer cubes should be slightly crispy and charred on the outer surface. This charring provides the dish with its exotic smokiness.

Inside, it should be silky, light, soft, and melt-in-your-mouth. Each piece of tikka should be thoroughly marinated to ensure all the flavors are well absorbed.

How to Marinate Paneer for BBQ?

First, make the marinade by combining thick curd or hung curd as a tenderizer (full cream Greek or Turkish yogurt would work too), ginger-garlic paste, red chili powder, black salt, garam masala, pepper powder, mustard oil, chaat masala, and gram flour.

Gram flour/besan is added to the marinade because it helps in coating the paneer well. Beat it until smooth. Then add Kasuri methi and lemon juice to the mixture and mix well again.

Gently add the paneer to coat well with the marinade and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Skewer it. Your marinated paneer is ready for grilling.

Where to Buy Paneer Cheese?

In many countries, you can find paneer at your local grocery stores. However, if you don’t find paneer in your local store, you can easily buy it from any local Indian grocery store.

How Long Can Paneer Be Marinated?

Paneer does not require a long marinating time; just 30 minutes is all you need. This marination can also be done the day before, but it must be refrigerated at all times. Add paneer to the marinade only 30 minutes prior to baking/roasting.


Paneer Tikka (Step-by-step photo instructions)

Cutting Veggies:

  1. Slice the ends off your onions, then cut them in the quarter.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-1-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. Pull out each layer, and you will have the onion petals. Set it aside.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-1-2 for Paneer Tikka
  5. Slice the ends off your capsicums, then deseed and dice them into 1-inch quarters. Keep it aside.
  6. Image of the recipe cooking step-1-3 for Paneer Tikka
  7. Cut paneer into 1-inch cubes, set it aside.
  8. Image of the recipe cooking step-1-4 for Paneer Tikka

Make Marinade:

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the hung curd, red chili powder, chaat masala powder, black salt, garam masala powder, black pepper powder, roasted cumin powder, turmeric powder, salt, ginger garlic paste, besan, and mustard oil.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. Mix everything well to combine.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-2 for Paneer Tikka
  5. Now, add the Kasuri methi, lemon juice and mix well to combine.
  6. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-3 for Paneer Tikka
  7. Then add paneer cubes, onion petals and diced capsicum to it.
  8. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-4 for Paneer Tikka
  9. Toss the paneer and veggies gently until coated well.
  10. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-5 for Paneer Tikka
  11. Cover the paneer and veggies mixture and refrigerate for 30 minutes to marinate. You can marinate them for up to 1-2 hours.
  12. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-6 for Paneer Tikka
  13. After that, thread paneer, onions, capsicum alternating onto the skewers and discard marinade. (If using wooden skewers, then soak them in the water for at least 2 hours.)
  14. Image of the recipe cooking step-2-7 for Paneer Tikka

1. How To Roast Paneer Tikka On Tawa/ Pan:

  1. Lightly brush a tawa/grilling with oil.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-3-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. When the tawa is hot, place the tikka skewers on it.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-3-2 for Paneer Tikka
  5. Grill until juices run clear, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  6. Image of the recipe cooking step-3-3 for Paneer Tikka
  7. For the char perfection, place roasted tikka on a papad roaster, and let it cook for 1 minute on each side. (You can also put it over direct flame for 30 seconds on each side.)
  8. Image of the recipe cooking step-3-4 for Paneer Tikka

2. How To Grill Paneer Tikka In An Oven:

  1. Preheat oven to 220°C/ 430° F 10 minutes. Arrange skewers on a baking pan, and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, take out the skewer. Turn on the broiler settings on high. Broil tikka on highest settings for 1-2 minutes or till the paneer has a light char on the surface.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-4-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. Carefully remove the roasting pan with the skewers out of the oven.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-4-2 for Paneer Tikka

3. How To Grill In A Panini/ Sandwich Maker:

  1. Preheat a grill for high heat.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-5-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. Brush the grill plates lightly with oil.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-5-2 for Paneer Tikka
  5. Once hot, place the tikka skewers and grill until juices run clear, or they are perfectly charred on the surface. It would take about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  6. Image of the recipe cooking step-5-3 for Paneer Tikka

4. How To Grill on a disposable grill:

  1. Brush skewers with oil. Then grill the tikkas till char and cook through.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-6-1 for Paneer Tikka

Serving:

  1. Arrange skewers on a serving platter.
  2. Image of the recipe cooking step-7-1 for Paneer Tikka
  3. Sprinkle some chaat masala powder and squeeze with a splash of lemon juice. Serve immediately with sliced onions and Mint coriander chutney.
  4. Image of the recipe cooking step-7-2 for Paneer Tikka

Recipe Card


Paneer Tikka [Recipe]

Recipe Image
Learn how to make succulent paneer tikka at home! A healthy, gluten-free dish with crispy edges, soft inside. Perfect for BBQs.
★★★★★
(Rating: 5 from 825 reviews)

Prep time 🕐 Cook time 🕐 Total time 🕐
30 mins
Category ☶ Cuisine ♨ Serves ☺
Appetizers Indian 5 skewers
Nutrition Info ⊛ Serving size ⊚
225 calories 1 tikka

INGREDIENTS

Main Ingredients For Paneer Tikka:
  • 400 grams paneer
  • 1 medium sized onion, peeled
  • 2 medium sized capsicum
Marinade for paneer tikka:
  • 1/2 cup hung curd
  • 1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste
  • 2 teaspoon red chilli powder (preferably use kashmiri red chili powder, it gives nice color and it’s not too spicy)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chaat masala powder
  • 1 teaspoon garam masala powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon roasted cumin powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper powder
  • 2 tablespoons besan (gram flour)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 tablespoon mustard oil (you can use any other oil of your choice)
  • 2 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves (kasuri methi)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
For serving:

INSTRUCTIONS:

Cutting Veggies:
  1. Slice the ends off your onions, then cut them in the quarter.
  2. Pull out each layer, and you will have the onion petals. Set it aside.
  3. Slice the ends off your capsicums, then deseed and dice them into 1-inch quarters. Keep it aside.
  4. Cut paneer into 1-inch cubes, set it aside.
Make Marinade:
  1. In a mixing bowl, add the hung curd, red chili powder, chaat masala powder, black salt, garam masala powder, black pepper powder, roasted cumin powder, turmeric powder, salt, ginger garlic paste, besan, and mustard oil.
  2. Mix everything well to combine.
  3. Now, add the Kasuri methi, lemon juice and mix well to combine.
  4. Then add paneer cubes, onion petals and diced capsicum to it.
  5. Toss the paneer and veggies gently until coated well.
  6. Cover the paneer and veggies mixture and refrigerate for 30 minutes to marinate. You can marinate them for up to 1-2 hours.
  7. After that, thread paneer, onions, capsicum alternating onto the skewers and discard marinade. (If using wooden skewers, then soak them in the water for at least 2 hours.)
1. How To Roast Paneer Tikka On Tawa/ Pan:
  1. Lightly brush a tawa/grilling with oil.
  2. When the tawa is hot, place the tikka skewers on it.
  3. Grill until juices run clear, about 3-4 minutes on each side.
  4. For the char perfection, place roasted tikka on a papad roaster, and let it cook for 1 minute on each side. (You can also put it over direct flame for 30 seconds on each side.)
2. How To Grill Paneer Tikka In An Oven:
  1. Preheat oven to 220°C/ 430° F 10 minutes. Arrange skewers on a baking pan, and bake for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, take out the skewer. Turn on the broiler settings on high. Broil tikka on highest settings for 1-2 minutes or till the paneer has a light char on the surface.
  2. Carefully remove the roasting pan with the skewers out of the oven.
3. How To Grill In A Panini/ Sandwich Maker:
  1. Preheat a grill for high heat.
  2. Brush the grill plates lightly with oil.
  3. Once hot, place the tikka skewers and grill until juices run clear, or they are perfectly charred on the surface. It would take about 3-4 minutes on each side.
4. How To Grill on a disposable grill:
  1. Brush skewers with oil. Then grill the tikkas till char and cook through.
Serving:
  1. Arrange skewers on a serving platter.
  2. Sprinkle some chaat masala powder and squeeze with a splash of lemon juice. Serve immediately with sliced onions and Mint coriander chutney.

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NOTES:

  1. We need solid paneer cubes for making tikkas, so always use the firm paneer, which is not crumbly.
  2. You can swap Kashmiri chili Powder with paprika.
  3. You can substitute hung curd with full cream Turkish yogurt or Greek yogurt.
  4. Always soak wooden skewers in water for at least 2 hours prior to use.


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