Chili Paneer


Chili Paneer

Chilli Paneer is an absolutely delicious Indo-Chinese dish that includes cubes of battered and fried paneer smothered in a savory, sweet, and spicy sauce made with soy sauce, vinegar, and chilli sauce.
Written by: A Little and A Lot 


For the Breaded, Fried Paneer:

  • 16 ounces Gopi Paneer
  • 1 teaspoon red chili powder, preferably Indian style
  • ½ cup cornstarch
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • Vegetable or canola oil for frying

For the Chili Paneer Sauce:

  • ½ cup soy sauce, or coconut aminos or tamari
  • ⅓ cup unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons red chili sauce
  • 2 tablespoons green chili sauce
  • 3 tablespoons Ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch

For the Vegetables:

  • 1 red onion, thickly sliced
  • 2 bell peppers (any color), cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 tablespoon chopped or grated ginger
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 7 ounces caned diced green chilies
  • 3 cups cooked Indian Rice , or any kind of cooked rice
  • About 1 cup chopped green onions, white and light green parts only, for garnish

Cooking Instructions  

  1. Chop the paneer into 1-inch cubes (approximately). As you chop, add the cubes to a bowl of room temperature water to keep them from drying out.
  2. Add cornstarch, flour, chili powder, salt, and pepper to a medium size bowl and stir with a wire whisk to mix.
  3. Slowly pour in about ½ cup water, whisking while you pour, using just enough to make a batter that’s the consistency of pancake batter.
  4. Add about 1 inch of oil to a skillet, set it over high heat, and heat the oil to 360-370° F (182-187° C).
  5. Add about ⅓ of the paneer cubes to the batter and toss them around to coat. Using a slotted spoon, lift the paneer from the batter into the hot skillet. Spread the paneer out in the pan, but don't worry if some pieces are stuck together. Let the paneer cook until deep golden brown on the bottom, then use metal tongs to turn the pieces over and allow them to brown on the other side. Remove the paneer from the skillet to a paper towel lined plate and repeat this process with the remaining paneer.
  6. In a small bowl or measuring cup, add the soy sauce, rice vinegar, both chili sauces, and ketchup. Stir to combine. In a separate small bowl or measuring cup, add 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and 6 tablespoons of water. Stir to combine. Set both bowls or measuring cups near the stovetop.
  7. Carefully pour all but about 3 tablespoons of oil from the skillet and set it over medium high heat. Add the sliced onion and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes, until it's just beginning to soften.
  8. Add the chopped bell peppers, ginger, garlic, and green chilies, and cook, stirring frequently, for another 2 minutes.
  9. Pour the soy sauce mixture into the pan and heat to boiling. Pour the cornstarch mixture into the pan, stirring constantly, and, bring the mixture back to a boil. Cook, stirring, until the sauce has thickened and is glossy. Add the paneer, tossing it gently in the sauce to coat, then remove the skillet from the heat.
  10. Serve the chilli paneer over rice, garnished with green onions, and with more red and green chili sauce on the side.