How to Make Fresh Paneer (Cottage Cheese) at Home (With Pictures)

Updated on October 20, 2017
ChitrangadaSharan profile image

Chitrangada has nutrition in mind when cooking for her family. Making nutritious food delicious is a skill she has perfected over the years.

Home made paneer or cottage cheese
Home made paneer or cottage cheese | Source

Making pure and Fresh Paneer / Cottage cheese at home

  • Paneer is perhaps the most popular and preferred food for vegetarians in India. My children love it and can have it in every meal.
  • It is so versatile that you can use it in many ways. You can make sweets out of it. Sweets like 'Rosogullas' 'Sandesh', 'Ras Malai ' etc. are made with soft paneer only.
  • There can be so much variety, even in its salted preparations. Delicacies like 'Malai Kofta, Malai Paneer, 'Palak paneer; 'Kadhai Paneer', ' Paneer Pakoda' and numerous other mouth watering dishes are made with paneer.
  • You can make cutlets, grill it, or stuff it in a 'paratha'. Grated paneer can be used to make delicious and nutritious sandwiches.
  • So, it is a must-have in your refrigerator. It is delicious, nutritious, easy and quick to make.
  • I would call it a comfort food , since it can be ready to eat in minutes.
  • Although it is readily available in supermarkets, nothing can beat the home made freshly made Paneer.
  • It's so soft; it enhances the taste of your hard work.

Step by step instructions for Making Paneer yourself

  1. Take 1 liter of milk in a thick bottomed vessel and put it for boiling over burner. Let it boil till it starts rising, but do not let it spill. Put off the heat.
  2. Mix 1 to 2 tablespoonful of lemon juice in the boiled milk and stir thoroughly. You will see the milk has curdled or separated. Do not boil the liquid after curdling.
  3. Place a large sieve over a large bowl, such that it covers the bowl. Carefully transfer the entire curdled mixture onto the sieve. The Paneer will be collected inside the sieve and the water will collect in bowl underneath.
  4. Let the Paneer drain off the water completely and let it cool.
  5. And that's it!

The Paneer is ready to be used. You can store it in the refrigerator, in boxes with lids, if you do not want to use immediately.

It can be stored for 2 to 3 days in the refrigerators. If you want to keep for a longer period, keep in deep freezer shelf. And when you want to use it, take out some 15 to 20 minutes before cooking.

Step 1- Boil the milk
Step 1- Boil the milk | Source
Step 2- Keep the lemon juice ready
Step 2- Keep the lemon juice ready | Source
Step 3–Curdling the milk
Step 3–Curdling the milk | Source
Step 4–Passing through sieve
Step 4–Passing through sieve | Source
Step 5– Home made Paneer or cottage cheese is ready to be used
Step 5– Home made Paneer or cottage cheese is ready to be used | Source

Some Tips to make soft paneer at home

  1. Although the cheese can be made with toned or skimmed milk, making it with full cream milk will yield more but to keep it low in calories; I prefer toned milk.
  2. While making any recipes, do not overcook the cheese, because it will lose its softness and become hard.
  3. The water that is collected in the bowl after sieving the Paneer still has the goodness of milk. It can be used to knead dough or as a stock. You can drink it as it is after adding a pinch of salt or sugar into it.
  4. You can also use white vinegar or curd to curdle the milk.
  5. Paneer or cottage cheese tastes best when fresh. So although it can be preserved for a considerable period in refrigerator, try to make fresh every time you want to enjoy cottage cheese recipes.

Enjoy your homemade cottage cheese!

Do you make paneer or cottage cheese at home?

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Did you know?

  • Paneer, or fresh cottage cheese, is so versatile that you can turn it into exotic recipes, whether sweet or salty.
  • It's good to make some and keep in the refrigerator if you want a quick meal.
  • In any recipe, over cooking the Paneer should be avoided, otherwise it may turn out rubbery and lose its natural juices.
  • Homemade, fresh cottage cheese is always softer and better in taste compared to the one bought from super markets.
  • For preparing sweets, always use fresh Paneer.
  • The water left behind after separating the Paneer can be used for making subsequent Paneer. It can also be used for kneading the dough or in soups. It is rich in nutrition so it should not be discarded.

Which is your favourite sweet made with paneer?

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Please rate my Home made Cottage Cheese recipe!

4.7 stars from 3 ratings of Home Made Cottage Cheese
Rasogulla is one of the most popular sweet, made with cottage cheese or paneer
Rasogulla is one of the most popular sweet, made with cottage cheese or paneer | Source

Questions & Answers

    © 2013 Chitrangada Sharan

    Do you make cottage cheese at home? If so, how?

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      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        6 months ago from New Delhi, India

        Thank you Rajan ji, for appreciating the article. Glad you liked it.

      • rajan jolly profile image

        Rajan Singh Jolly 

        6 months ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

        Thanks for sharing the method to make fresh paneer. The rasgullas look very tempting.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Dolores Monet, for going through this hub and your lovely comments!

        I am glad this is helpful to you. Thanks for voting up!

      • Dolores Monet profile image

        Dolores Monet 

        5 years ago from East Coast, United States

        I have been wanting to make a simple cheese and this looks like the place to start. Your pictures are a huge help, letting us know how the paneer should look through every step. (Voted up!)

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Hi Matthew Ryczko!

        Thanks for visiting this hub and your positive feedback. I hope you will make your Paneer now onwards.

        Thanks and have a good day! Thanks for the Follow as well!

      • Matthew Ryczko profile image

        Matthew Ryczko 

        5 years ago from Ohio

        I, too, had no idea it was this simple! I eat paneer often- I should have been making my own all along. Thanks for sharing this!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks mr-veg, for your visit and appreciation! I am glad you liked it.

        Thanks for voting up!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks rajan, for visiting and commenting.

        I am glad you found it to be useful.

        Thanks for sharing and voting up!

      • mr-veg profile image

        mr-veg 

        5 years ago from Colorado United States

        Wow, I never knew it was this simple :) thanks Chitrangada for sharing it !! I am gonna try it and love it all over... Voted up...

      • rajan jolly profile image

        Rajan Singh Jolly 

        5 years ago from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar,INDIA.

        I love paneer and we do make it at home many times. Thanks for sharing the step by step procedure and pictures.

        Voted up and useful and shared as well.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Yes DzyMsLizzy! It is quite easy, pure and fresh, and the best part is, you can make it at home anytime.

        Thanks for reading, appreciating and voting up!

      • DzyMsLizzy profile image

        Liz Elias 

        5 years ago from Oakley, CA

        This sounds pretty easy, and I'm all for easy in the kitchen! I'm going to bookmark this to try for sure! Thanks for sharing. I'm always interested in vegetarian recipes.

        Voted up, interesting and useful.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Marcy Goodfleisch, for visiting this hub and your lovely comments. Nice to hear about your city and its pleasing diversity. I am glad you liked the hub!

        Have a good day!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Deepak, for your visit and appreciative comments!

      • Marcy Goodfleisch profile image

        Marcy Goodfleisch 

        5 years ago from Planet Earth

        You are making me hungry for one of the great Indian restaurants we have here! I feel fortunate to live in a city that's so diverse - our restaurants are authentic, in many cases, and we are so blessed to learn to love tastes we otherwise would not acquire!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Suzie, for visiting this hub and your nice words of appreciation. I am glad you liked it and I am sure you will try it.

        Thanks for sharing and pinning! Have a good day!

      • Deepak Chaturvedi profile image

        Deepak Chaturvedi 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Wow!delicious and full colories. Good hub and tasty efforts.

      • Suzie HQ profile image

        Suzanne Ridgeway 

        5 years ago from Dublin, Ireland

        Hi Chitrangada,

        Wow, how interesting, never knew about paneer and how easy it is to make! I love cottage cheese so will definitely be trying this out. Great share, so have voted it up, useful, interesting, shared and pinned!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Indian Chef, for visiting this hub and your comments.

        I am glad it brought back some sweet memories of your mother. I hope you try it at home, the way your mother did.

        Have a good day!

      • Indian Chef profile image

        Indian Chef 

        5 years ago from New Delhi India

        This is very nice way to make paneer. My mother also made it same way. Really i went in past thinking about making paneer because my mom was very fomd of making paneer at home.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Seeker7, for visiting this hub and your appreciative comments. If you find any problem, trying it, you are most welcome to ask me.

        Thanks and have a good day!

      • Seeker7 profile image

        Helen Murphy Howell 

        5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

        What a delicious recipe and the instructions are excellent! I will need to have a go at this one very soon. Many thanks for sharing! Voted up!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks MarleneB, for your visit and comments. I am glad you found the hub easy to follow.

        Have a nice day!

      • MarleneB profile image

        Marlene Bertrand 

        5 years ago from USA

        Like you said, nothing beats fresh! Your instructions are so easy to follow. The photos are extra helpful. I am definitely going to try this recipe.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks DDE, for your words of appreciation. I am glad you liked it.

        Have a good day!

      • DDE profile image

        Devika Primić 

        5 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

        Wow! Making Panner cheese is this simple! Thanks for the step by step recipe.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        You are welcome, Claudia Tello! I am happy to be of help.

        Have a nice day!

      • Claudia Tello profile image

        Claudia Tello 

        5 years ago from Mexico

        Thanks a lot for your explanation. Now it is totally clear to me and I am ready to follow your recipe. Looking very much forward to start experimenting with Panner in different dishes.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Ericdierker, for your visit and appreciative comments.

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks suzzycue, for visiting and commenting. Hope you will try making your own cottage cheese now.

        Thanks again!

      • ChitrangadaSharan profile imageAUTHOR

        Chitrangada Sharan 

        5 years ago from New Delhi, India

        Thanks Claudia Tello, for your visit and comments.

        Now regarding your confusion. It depends on the consistency of the milk you are going to use, as to how much lemon juice will be enough to curdle the milk. You have to slowly add the lemon juice and keep stirring, till you see it has curdled. Sometimes it is done in 1 tbsp., or 1 and a half, sometimes it takes a little more than that. But keeping the lemon juice ready is advisable.

        Hope that helps. If still you have any query, you are most welcome to ask.

        Thanks so much for your feedback.

      • Ericdierker profile image

        Eric Dierker 

        5 years ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

        Very well done. Thank you.

      • suzzycue profile image

        Susan Britton 

        5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

        I have never made my own cottage cheese and did not know it was this easy. I love to eat it just by itself or with olive oil/ cider vinegar dressing on it. Thank you for this recipe.

      • Claudia Tello profile image

        Claudia Tello 

        5 years ago from Mexico

        I would like to try making Panner with your instructions. However, I have a question I was hoping you could please clarify: you mention 1 to 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, how do I know how much lemon juice to add? When is it 1 tablespoon? When is it 2 tablespoons? This is a little bit confusing to me.

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