Homemade Paneer Recipe

Fresh cheese curds are hung, then pressed and dried in this classic Indian cheese.
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin 

Makes: 1 ½ cups|260 grams
Prep time: 5 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes


4 cups|1 liter whole milk
2 cups|500 ml half and half      
¼ cup|60 ml fresh lemon juice
kosher salt, to taste


  1. Make the paneer: Combine the milk and half and half in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently to avoid burning or scalding at the bottom.
  2. Bring mixture to a boiling point. The milk should be steamy and vigorously boiling. Slowly add the lemon juice; within seconds the milk will curdle, separating paneer on top and whey liquid underneath.
  3. Switch off the stove and let the pot sit for 2 minutes. Line a colander with cheese cloth or thin cotton cloth and place it over a large bowl. Pour milk solids and whey into the colander. Take opposite ends of the cloth and tie them together, lifting the cloth out of the colander.
  4. Using a large spoon placed across the top of a jug, hang the cloth with the paneer from the spoon handle. The paneer bundle should be hanging inside the jug. Hang for at least 30 minutes, then remove the bundle from the jug, untie the knot, and fold the cloth over smoothly across the paneer. Place a heavy weight on top of the paneer for approximately 30 minutes. Crumble the paneer and season with salt. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Paneer can be kept, refrigerated, for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months.

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