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Vegan Butter Tofu

Butter Paneer

A vegetarian version of butter chicken using paneer, a kind of cheese.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4


  • 2 tbsp vegan butter substitute
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 " thumb of fresh ginger peeled
  • 1 bird's eye or Thai red chili chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp coriander
  • 1 can tomato sauce 156 ml
  • 1 can coconut milk 400 ml
  • 1/4 cup cashews
  • 200 g half a package of either paneer or tofu, cut into 3/4" cubes


  • Place the cashews in your blender container, and cover with 1/2 cup of water. Set aside to soak.
  • In a large, heavy pot, heat the vegan butter and olive oil over medium-high heat until melted together. Add the ginger, garlic, chilies and cumin and coriander and stir well. Allow to cook in the oils for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Be careful not to burn (especially garlic, it burns quickly).
  • Add the tomato paste and stir well together, allow to cook down for about 5 minutes, until it is starting to caramelize.
  • Place the masala (spice & tomato mixture) along with the can of coconut milk in the blender with the cashews that have been soaking, and blend well on high for at least a minute, until smooth. You can run it through a sieve if you are concerned about particulate.
  • Pour the sauce back into the pan, and bring it up to just under a boil, and the sauce thickens. Add the cubed tofu or paneer, and stir, allowing them to heat up in the sauce. When everything is heated through, serve atop a bed of basmati rice, garnished with chopped cilantro if you like.
Keyword vegetarian