Best Substitutes for Paneer – The Top 8 Alternatives in 2024
Paneer is a dry curd cheese that’s quite similar to unsalted pressed ricotta. Paneer originated in India and is the main source of protein for vegetarian Buddhists.
Paneer doesn’t melt and it can be used in curries and stir-fries. It can also be wrapped in filo pastry to be fried. And since it’s unsalted, it can be used in desserts as well.
Paneer can be found in most Asian markets, Indian stores, or ethnic supermarkets. But what if it’s out of stock? What substitute for paneer can you opt for?
8 Best Paneer Substitutes
Many kinds of cheese have a similar taste and texture to paneer. If you can’t find paneer in your local supermarket, here are some excellent alternatives:
Feta has a slightly tangy and salty taste. However, low salt feta is available. The longer the cheese has been left to age, the more peppery the flavor.
Mozzarella has a similar texture and flavor to paneer. The main difference between the two types of cheese is that mozzarella melts easier.
Unlike mozzarella, halloumi doesn’t melt. It’s known for its tangy taste, which intensifies with age. What’s more, halloumi can be grilled!
Panela is known for its fresh milk flavor. Panela is similar to paneer but has the added benefit of being gluten-free.
- Well-Drained Ricotta
Ricotta has a subtle sweet flavor. Unlike paneer, it has a slightly grainy texture.
- Mexican Queso Blanco
Queso blanco has a mild, salty milk flavor. It has a slightly creamier texture than other paneer substitutes.
- Cottage Cheese
Cottage cheese is another creamy substitute. This cheese also has a slightly salty taste.
Another great vegan substitute for paneer is tofu. Tofu is extremely firm, making it a great paneer substitute for soups and curries.
Making Paneer at Home
Store-bought paneer may be convenient, but homemade paneer boasts a fresher, more delicate flavor. It’s also easier to make than you might think!
Here are the steps you need to follow to make homemade paneer in you kitchen:
- Boil some high-quality, whole-fat milk
- Stir the pot regularly to ensure the milk doesn’t burn
- Once it has started to boil, turn off the heat
- Add a quarter cup of lemon or lime juice to make the milk curdle
- Let the liquid cool for 5-10 minutes before straining the liquid using a cheesecloth
- Rinse the curds caught in the cloth with cold water to remove the excess lemon juice
- Squeeze the cloth to get rid of excess liquid until the cheese is firm
- Flatten the cheese in the cloth and weigh it down between plates
- Place the cheese in the fridge for a few hours
- Cut it into cubes
Is Tofu Healthier Than Paneer?
Tofu is healthier than Paneer better choice if you’re trying to cut down on saturated fats.
Can you substitute mozzarella for paneer
Yes, you can use buffalo mozzarella as an alternative to paneer. Paneer is a popular Indian food made from curdled milk and spices. It is often used as a meat substitute in dishes such as curry. The best way to grill paneer is to cut it into cubes and marinate them in yogurt and spices. Then, place them on a hot grill and cook until they turn golden brown.
What is a good alternative to paneer in curry?
Run out of paneer and substitute it with equal quantities of Halloumi cheese.
Halloumi Cheese is great in curries because it is firm and will slowly absorb some extra curry flavor making it just delicious.
Which cheese is closest to paneer?
Paneer is a popular Indian food made from curdled milk. The best and closest substitute for paneer is either Halloumi cheese or Panela cheese.
Where can you get paneer?
Cheese is an essential part of any meal. It adds flavor, texture, and nutrition. If you plan ahead buying a good quality one online gives you the best choice. Other places like Asian or Indian markets in your local area.
What are some fancy types of Paneer cheese
- paneer bhurji
- saag paneer
- mattar paneer
- vegan palak paneer
Paneer is an extremely popular Indian cheese that can be used in a variety of dishes. However, it can sometimes be hard to find. Luckily, making it at home is simple.
There are also plant-based alternatives for vegans, like tofu, and a variety of cheeses, like feta, mozzarella, and halloumi, that are great paneer substitutes.