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Saag Paneer with Chickpeas
and naan

Active: 45 Total: 45

We're excited to bring back this authentic Indian meal of cheese (paneer) and chickpeas in a rich spinach sauce. This is a Cook Smarts classic, first featured back in 2015. Fragrant spices add color and flavor to the dish. 

Tags

Ingredients

Metric
Servings:
4
Saag Paneer with Chickpeas:
  • Onions, medium - 1, diced
  • Jalapenos - 1, diced (seeds removed for less spice)
  • Garlic - 2 cloves, chopped
  • Ginger, fresh - 1 tsp, grated
  • Frozen chopped spinach - 16 oz, defrosted and drained of as much liquid as possible
  • Tomatoes, diced (14 oz / 397 g) - 1 can
  • Cheese, paneer - 8 oz, cubed (sub extra-firm tofu)
  • Cilantro leaves - 1/4 cup, chopped
  • Beans, garbanzo (14 oz / 397 g) - 1 can, drained and rinsed
  • Turmeric, ground - 1 Tbsp
  • Oil, cooking - 2 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp
  • Coriander, ground - 2 tsp
  • Cumin, ground - 1 1/2 tsp
  • Garam masala - 1/2 tsp
  • Yogurt, plain or Greek - 1/4 cup, plus more for serving
Naan:
  • Naan - 4 rounds

Nutrition Facts

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Prep

  1. Onions / Jalapenos / Garlic / Ginger - Prep as directed and combine. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  2. Spinach - Defrost spinach in microwave or in a bowl of warm water. When completely thawed, drain well in a colander. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)

  3. Make sauce - Combine spinach and tomatoes (including liquid) in a blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead).

  4. Paneer / Cilantro - Prep as directed. Store separately. (Can be done 1 day ahead)

  5. Beans - Drain and rinse.

  6. Marinate proteins - Toss paneer and beans with turmeric and some salt. Set aside to marinate for at least 5 minutes.

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Make

  1. Heat a large nonstick pan with first part of oil over medium heat (using a nonstick pan will really help to prevent paneer from sticking, but you can also use extra oil and sear the paneer and beans in the same pan you’ll use to cook the sauce). Add paneer and beans. Cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Set aside.

  2. Heat a Dutch oven with second part of oil over medium heat. Add onions, jalapenos, garlic, and ginger. Saute until very tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Season with some salt.

  3. Add in ground coriander, cumin, and garam masala. Saute until fragrant, ~1 minute more.

  4. Pour spinach and tomato sauce over aromatics, stirring well to release any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Bring to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes.

  5. Warm naan.

  6. Remove sauce from heat and stir in yogurt. Gently fold in paneer and beans. Season to taste with some more salt and more spices if you’d like.

  7. Top paneer with cilantro. Enjoy with naan.

Nutrition Facts

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Reviews

Ratings

Original (39)
Gluten-free (4)
Paleo (3)
Vegetarian (9)

33 reviews

I love this so much! It's a pretty straightforward dish to make. I used a heavy hand on the spices and I'm pleased with my decision.

By: Liza
Posted: Nov 25, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

Took some liberty with the recipe, but kiddos raved... About spinach, lol. I didn't even know that was possible. Thanks again Cook Smarts!

By: Mackenzie
Posted: Nov 19, 2021
Diet: Paleo
0 Helpful

This meal made me crash. That's not on you, we probably used too much paneer. Pretty good mix of flavors after adding more spices.

By: Angela
Posted: Nov 18, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

Not really my kind of dish and was outside my comfort zone flavor was good and the meal was filling I wouldn’t make any changes but probably won’t make again either

By: Jane
Posted: Nov 18, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

2/3 kids actually liked it! It made way too much though. I normally make 8 servings, but this time I think I'll have to freeze half of the leftovers.

By: Becca
Posted: Nov 18, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful

I subbed tofu because I couldn't find paneer. My sauce was pretty thick and not liquidy at all so I might have squeezed too much water out of the spinach. However, the dish still turned out super tasty. Great mix of flavors and textures that I will definitely make again!

By: Caitlin
Posted: Nov 17, 2021
Diet: Original
0 Helpful