Best Paneer Malai Kofta Recipe {Mughlai Style}

The Best Indian Paneer Malai Kofta Recipe

Sharing with you all today, one of my most favourite and my signature dish Paneer Malai Kofta. And it is way different from the rest of its clan of malai koftas. How different it is? Read below.

This is the one dish which has never failed me. Each and every time it has spelled success with its wonderful aroma that wafts throughout the kitchen. And it’s creamy and rich taste keeps me mesmerized for a long time.

I have learnt this recipe of malai kofta from my mom who used to prepare this fabulous dish on festive occasion or for any family gatherings. And it’s definitely a secret or may be magic in her fingers that each time it taste exactly the same, simply beautiful and amazing , year after year.

This paneer malai kofta recipe is our in house special and tried and tested for years.

Malai kofta indian curry

What Is Malai Kofta / Paneer Malai Kofta?

Malai kofta or paneer malai kofta is a very famous and popular Indian vegetarian dish where kofta balls are prepared with mashed paneer and are deep fried. These paneer koftas are then simmered in a nutty gravy with a generous amount of cream added to it.

Unlike others, we do not add potato in our malai kofta. And that is what it makes all the difference.

What Is The Secret Of Melt-In Mouth Paneer Kofta?

Paneer is one of the most favored food at our homes, I guess, probably in most of the other homes too. And when it comes to paneer, there are no dearth of recipes and flavours to try with this versatile food.

My mom’s secret ingredient for making paneer kofta is the paneer itself. She never used the commercial variety. She always used to prepare it at home, fresh from full fat milk. No wonder her koftas were always soft and melt in mouth kind.

If you are still apprehensive about making paneer at home from scratch, then do not worry. We have got you covered. Here is a guide to make Homemade Paneer At Home.

Homemade paneer is easy to make, cost effective and will always gives you the best result in terms of quality and texture. Homemade paneer will remain soft even if you fry it or keep it in the fridge. No chewy or rubbery texture you will get.

paneer malai kofta

Why This Paneer Malai Kofta Is Best?

1.First, this recipe of paneer malai kofta does not have potatoes in it. Nothing against the humble potatoes but I think we can definitely spare the potatoes in this rich and regale paneer kofta curry.

2.Second, this paneer malai kofta has been prepared as per Mughlai cuisine which undoubtedly brings a range of aromatic flavours at play and the unparalleled richness it offers to any curry.  Mughlai curries are a class apart.

When it comes to Mughlai cuisine, the most significant ingredients are perhaps the aromatic spices and dry fruits which gives a royal touch to the dish, hence the name “shahi paneer” .

The term “Kofta” has been borrowed from the middle eastern cuisine where it means balls of minced meat. And paneer beautifully adapts that kofta texture, making it possible for vegetarians to enjoy the kofta curries.

3.Third, these are not ordinary malai kofta. These are stuffed malai koftas . Stuffed with mawa and dry fruits.

malai kofta recipe

How To Make Shahi Paneer Malai Kofta?

The soft homemade paneer is first mashed and kneaded properly. Then little flour is used for proper binding along with spices. Else shaping the koftas will be difficult and it will not hold its shape.

Next, these paneer koftas are stuffed with mawa / khova, chopped almonds, cashews and raisins.  Rolled and then deep fried in hot oil.

You can use appe pan also to make koftas and will significantly reduce the amount of oil used for consumption.

The curry follows the Mughlai style. Boiled onion paste is sauteed along with nut and seed paste and then hung curd or thick yogurt is added for extra creaminess. You can use milk or cream further for making it extra rich. A drizzle of ghee at the end finishes the royal /shahi Paneer Malai Kofta.


Indian shahi paneer malai kofta in my signature style

Best melt in mouth Indian shahi paneer malai kofta stuffed with khova, nuts and raisins and curried in a nutty sauce. A royal mughlai dish goes well wit pulao or naan.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr 10 mins
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 8 koftas
Author: Sukanya Ghosh


  • 250 gm Paneer , homemade this will make 8 koftas of medium size
  • 2-3 tbsp Flour / Cornflour for binding
  • Oil for deep frying the koftas

For stuffing the koftas:

  • 1 tbsp Almonds chopped
  • 2 tbsp Raisins, chopped
  • 20 gm Khova / Mawa

Seasoning the Koftas

  • 1 tsp Roasted cumin powder
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon powder
  • Salt to taste

For gravy:

  • 2 tbsp Ghee and oil ( I mix them both)
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1-2 Dry Red Chilli
  • 1 tsp Kasuri Methi
  • Shahi garam masala for malai kofta See Note
  • 1 medium Boiled onion paste peel the onion, boil it in water and then grind to a smooth paste in a mixer.
  • 2 tbsp poppy seed paste
  • 4 tbsp Cashew nut paste
  • 1 tsp Melon seed paste
  • ¼ cup Plain yogurt / curd whipped
  • 1 tbsp Ginger paste
  • 1 tsp Cumin powder
  • 1 tsp Coriander powder
  • 1 tsp Red Chilli Powder
  • 2 tbsp Khova / Mawa
  • Few Raisins And Cashews
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 cup Warm water
  • ¾ cup Milk
  • 2 tbsp Fresh Cream


Preparing the paneer:

  • Homemade paneer is best for this recipe which will ensure soft melt in mouth kind paneer koftas.

Preparing the koftas:

  • Now crumble and mash the paneer well till it becomes a soft dough. Add flour or corn flour for binding.
    Season it with salt, cinnamon powder and roasted cumin powder.
  • Knead the dough for couple of minutes and divide it in equal portions and make 8 round koftas from it.
  • Stuffed each kofta with chopped almonds, raisins and pinch of khova. Roll them properly and deep fry them in hot oil till golden brown.

Preparing the gravy:

  • Soak the cashew (a handful) and melon seeds in hot water for 15 minutes. Add curd and blend them together into a smooth paste.
  • Heat some oil and ghee in a deep skillet, and temper it with bay leaves, dry red chilli and kasuri methi.
  • Next add the boiled onion paste, ginger paste and saute it for few minutes on low flame till it turns slightly translucent.
  • Next add the poppy seed paste, saute for couple of minutes. Followed by cashew - melon - yogurt paste.
  • Add the roasted cumin powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder and salt.
  • Mix them properly and cook on low heat till the masala looks good and starts leaving the sides of the pan.
  • Add khova, mix it proprely. Add hot water and bring it to boil. You can add 1 green chilli too, if you want.
    Check for the seasonings and add if anything requires.
  • Drop the koftas in the gravy carefully. Stir in the milk and special shahi garam masala spice blend (see note).
    Add the fried raisins and cashews in the gravy.
    Simmer on low heat for 4-5 minutes. Switch off the heat.
  • Stir in the cream and serve with naan, kulcha, shahjani pulao or biryani.


Shahi Garam Masala for malai kofta:
Pinch of nutmeg powder, 1 mace, 1 big black cardamom, 1″cinnamon stick, 1 tsp white pepper , 1/2 tsp black pepper , 1/2 tsp shah jeera . Crush them in a mortar and pestle into fine powder.

Looking For More Paneer Dishes?

Shahi Paneer Kofta Pulao

Lehsuni Paneer Korma

Mughlai Shahi Paneer

Paneer Makhani


  • Reply
    July 20, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Totally with you on paneer. We are insane paneer lovers too. For me the gravy in your dish is the highlight. The creaminess and color makes it look simply delicious. Also like how the koftas have retained their shape even though completely a part of the dish. Exactly the way I like it.

    US Masala

  • Reply
    Vidhya Jayadeep
    July 20, 2011 at 7:30 pm

    Curry looks so yummy and creamy.

  • Reply
    July 20, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    Wow…its a lovely twist to the dish…loved it

  • Reply
    July 20, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    Malai kofta looks so lavish and delicious As usual your clicks are simply brilliant.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  • Reply
    Tadka Pasta
    July 21, 2011 at 1:45 am

    Shahi Paneer and malai kofta come together? Be still our beating hearts 🙂

  • Reply
    July 21, 2011 at 11:11 am

    Aha, that’s a novelty indeed! Must try this out some time…
    I have missed some of your recipes. I plan to catch up on them very soon. 😀

  • Reply
    Devaki @ weavethousandflavors
    July 21, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    This looks totally luscious Sukanya and I absolutely have to make these for a party – on my list! BTW, can u please email me your mailing address 🙂

    chow! Devaki @ weavethousandflavors

  • Reply
    July 21, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    uuuuu now that is making me drool. Give me that dish and one kulcha and I will finish my dinner with a smile 🙂

  • Reply
    Priya Yallapantula
    July 22, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    wow, I so want to try it out right now and feel it in my mouth. Loving your pics and description, method and everything 🙂

  • Reply
    July 26, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    Looks rich & creamy..Thanks for your lovely narration & sending across to my event.

    SIGNATURE RECIPES & A GIVEAWAY till july 31st 2011

  • Reply
    July 29, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    I ordered this many times in Indian restaurants, now I am gonna try cooking it 🙂

  • Reply
    Premalatha Aravindhan
    July 29, 2011 at 10:21 pm

    yummy and delicious kofta…

  • Reply
    Umm Mymoonah
    July 31, 2011 at 11:44 pm

    Thank you for sharing your secret ingredient with us, seriously very tempting. Definitely this is on my top list to try, thank you so much for sending it to Iftar Moments 🙂

  • Reply
    August 1, 2011 at 1:05 am

    Wow looks yummy and creamy

  • Reply
    Easy Indian Recipes
    March 17, 2014 at 9:10 pm

    Hi! Your shahi paneer recipe was nominated as one of the “Best Shahi Paneer Recipes on the Net”. To vote for it, please visit – your recipe is positioned at #81 (random order).

    • Reply
      March 18, 2014 at 2:44 pm

      Thank you so much for the nomination. Fingers crossed. 🙂

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