How to Soften Frozen Paneer

Paneer, also known as cottage cheese, is a soft, white, and creamy cow’s milk product. It is widely used all over the world in different recipes to add taste in a meal. It has a peculiar taste of its own, but when used in curries or sauces, it glorifies the taste of that dish. Paneer is the best substitute for any meat in a dish.

It contains essential nutrients for human health and is rich in protein. This is beneficial for the people who love to eat cheese but have issues regarding weight as it is low in fat and calories.

Paneer is refrigerated to make it safe from spoiling, and it needs to be softened before using it in a recipe. If not, you will not experience its desired taste and texture.

Photo by Kanwardeep Kaur on Unsplash


How to do Paneer fry with frozen Paneer?

The following are the methods to cook frozen Paneer before using it in a recipe. The methods vary depending upon the time; one has to make it soft. So, let’s discuss some of these methods.

1.      Expose it to Room Temperature

The first thing that can be done to make it soft is to bringing Paneer out of the refrigerator and exposing it to room temperature. When refrigerated, it becomes cold and hard. Bringing it to room temperature will make this soft on its own.

Using this method, it might take time for it to become soft. So, if you want to use it in your recipe, take it out from the refrigerator 2-3 hours before usage.

2.      Immerse in hot water

During winters, Paneer might not get softened when exposed to room temperature. The reason is that the room temperature is too low for the frozen Paneer to melt or soften on its own.

Therefore, you should break it into small cubes and immerse it in warm water (mild hot, otherwise it will become too soft) to make better use of it for your recipe/meal. 

The thing that should be taken care of during this is not to immerse it for more than 5 minutes because it starts breaking when you try to put it in your meal, and you will lose its taste and texture. Water should be drained after Paneer gets soft.

3.      Steaming Frozen Paneer:

It becomes difficult for some people to separate the water from Paneer completely. While immersing it in warm water, it absorbs some water that can lead someone to compromise on the taste and texture of his recipe. 

Therefore, steaming can be useful in making it soft. First, you will have to boil water in a pan over medium to high flame. Then, you need a strainer, paneer cubes, and a lid.

All you need to do is to add the boiled water in a bowl and put a strainer on it. Distribute the paneer cubes evenly on top of the strainer and cover it with the lid. Make sure there is no escape for steam and let Paneer get steam for 10-15 mins until it gets soft.

4.      Frying it:

We can also make frozen Paneer soft by frying it. Take a pan and put some oil or ghee in it. Put it on a moderate flame to make hot. Once it gets hot, place paneer cubes or whole piece, preferably in it, and shake it for 10-15 seconds. 

It will be soft in 2-3 mins or earlier. Make sure to shake it slowly so that it should not stick with the pan and turn the flame off when the color of the Paneer turns brown. Don’t over-fry it because it will make paneer cubes hard. Then, you can add it to your recipe/meal to make it delicious and mouthwatering.

5.      Boiling in Water:

Frying it in oil makes it rich in fats and calories. If you are health conscious and don’t want your meal to be fatty, you may boil it in hot water. Just add the paneer cubes in boiling water and let it become soft and spongy.

Drain the hot water and let it be in cold water for 10 mins before adding it in your recipe. If you add it without soaking it in cold water, it will become hard and rubbery. By soaking it in cold water for a short time before adding it in your recipe, keep it soft while cooking your meal.


We hope these methods were helpful for you, and you are now in a position to soften the frozen Paneer easily. Choose the method that most suits your requirements and get the frozen Paneer softened to add it to your dishes.

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