Paneer Vindaloo is the vegetarian version of the restaurant favorite Goan Vindaloo Curry. Paneer cubes are cooked in a fiery-red sauce packed with bold flavors. Enjoy this gluten-free curry with rice or naan for a satisfying dinner!
For all the vegetarian who have been missing out on the wonderful flavors of the vindaloo curry (including my husband), here is Paneer Vindaloo for you 😊😊
Vindaloo curry is very popular at restaurants, typically made with pork or chicken. I used the authentic vindaloo masala paste for this recipe. So you can call it a vegetarian version of the authentic Goan vindaloo curry.
I have the chicken vindaloo recipe on the blog which is very popular, but my husband could not taste it as he is vegetarian. Hence I made this vegetarian version with the exact same steps, but in a pan on stovetop with paneer.
You can make this recipe vegan, but substituting paneer with firm baked or sautéed tofu or cooked chickpeas. You can also add a variety of veggies to make this is veggie vindaloo curry.
You will love this Paneer Vindaloo Curry as:
√ It is full of flavor
√ It is so easy to make in less than 30 minutes.
√ Vegetarian & Gluten Free
√ Perfect to enjoy even on weeknights!
If you love paneer, check out this collection of 20+ Best Paneer Recipes.
What is Vindaloo?
Vindaloo (pronounced vin-duh-loo) is an Indian curry dish from the region of Goa. This spicy and tangy curry was introduced to the region by Portuguese sailors.
Vindaloo comes from carne de vinha d’alhos, which literally means “meat in garlic wine marinade”. This was “Indianized” by the local Goan cooks with the substitution of vinegar for the red wine, and the addition of dried red chili peppers with additional spices.
Vindaloo has become synonymous with ‘super hot and spicy curry’. However in reality this curry is not the most spicy. Yes, we add lots of spices, however it does not have the heat as some other curries.
Traditionally, Vindaloo is eaten with pav (similar to dinner rolls), however now people around the world enjoy it with naan, rice or any Indian flatbread.
How to make?
Now let’s see how to make this delicious vindaloo curry. The main steps are:
- Making the vindaloo curry paste
- Marinating the paneer
- Making the curry
Making the Vindaloo Paste
To make the paste, we first dry roast whole spices in a pan. Then once the spices are fragrant in about a minute, transfer them to a blender.
Add the other aromatics such as ginger, garlic, tamarind paste and vinegar. Vinegar adds a wonderful tangy taste to the curry. I used rice vinegar in this recipe.
Grind to make a smooth paste. I added about 1/2 cup water when grinding.
I added Kashmiri red chili when making this paste. The Kashmiri chili’s give the bright red color to the paste, and they are not as hot. But do adjust the heat to your liking by adjusting the amount of red chili’s added to the paste.
Pro-tip: This vindaloo paste freezes well, so you can double or triple the amount, and save it for later.
Marinating the Paneer with Vindaloo Paste
Cube the paneer into 1-1.5 inch pieces in size. Then add the ground curry paste to the paneer. Mix well and refrigerate for 15-30 minutes.
Making the curry
Heat a heavy bottom pan on medium-high heat and add oil in it. Add onions and saute for about 7-8 minutes until they turn golden brown. Add turmeric and salt. Add the marinated paneer and mix well
Tip: Never leave any curry spices behind. Mix in any remaining vindaloo paste from the marinade in 1/2 cup water, and add to the pan.
Add brown sugar and stir in the curry. Cook for about 5-7 minutes until the paneer softens.
Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with rice, naan or roti.
My husband loved this paneer vindaloo, and totally approved it to be shared here with you all.
Vegetable Vindaloo: You can add veggies such as sweet potato, cauliflower, green beans, potatoes, mushrooms, bell peppers, eggplants, or carrots to make this a veg vindaloo curry.
Tofu: If you want to make this curry vegan, use baked or lightly sautéed tofu in place of paneer.
Chickpeas: You can also add canned or precooked chickpeas to this curry for added protein. I like to cook dry chickpeas in the instant pot, and have them ready to use in multiple dishes through the week.
Give this amazing Paneer Vindaloo a try and do share how it turns out!
For Vindaloo Paste
- 5 Whole Dried Kashmiri Red Chili Pepper
- 2 tablespoon Coriander Seeds
- 5 Cloves (Laung)
- 1 inch Cinnamon (Dalchini)
- 3 Green Cardamom (Elaichi)
- 1/4 teaspoon Black Peppercorns
- 1 teaspoon Cumin seeds (Jeera)
- 1 teaspoon Mustard Seeds (Rai)
- 8 cloves Garlic
- 1 inch Ginger
- 2 tablespoon Vinegar, I used rice vinegar. White vinegar will work too.
- 1 tablespoon Tamarind paste, See notes
- 1/2 cup Water
Making the vindaloo paste
- Heat a heavy bottom pan on medium heat and add the dry whole spices – dry red kashmiri chilies, coriander seeds, cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, peppercorns, cumin and mustard seeds.
- Sauté for about a minute until they are fragrant and slightly browned. Make sure the spices do not burn. Turn off the flame.
- Transfer the whole spices to a grinder. Add ginger, garlic, tamarind paste and vinegar.
- Add 1/2 cup water and grind to a smooth paste.
Marinating the paneer with vindaloo paste
- In a large bowl, add the paneer pieces. Add the vindaloo paste to the paneer. Mix well and refrigerate for 15-30 minutes.
Making the curry
- Heat a heavy bottom pan on medium-high heat and add oil in it.
- Add onions and saute for about 7-8 minutes until they turn golden brown.
- Add turmeric and salt. Add the marinated paneer and mix well.
- Mix in any remaining vindaloo paste from the marinade in 1/2 cup water, and add to the pan. Add brown sugar and stir in the curry.
- Cover and cook for about 5 minutes until the paneer softens.
- Garnish with cilantro and serve hot with rice, naan or roti.