Paneer is a common ingredient in Indian homes, but we use it in just a few dishes. Here are 40 Healthy Paneer Recipes for Babies and Kids to ensure variety!
If you ask parents what the most important nutrients for kids are, most of them are likely to mention iron, protein and calcium, along with fiber. And they would be right too, as these nutrients are crucial for healthy growth and development in children. But since kids are picky eaters, it’s a challenge to get them to eat different foods to get all their nutrients. Which is why a multipurpose ingredient like paneer is perfect!
Paneer is essentially a kind of cheese, made by curdling milk with an acidic element like lemon, curd or vinegar. The curds are separated from the whey and compressed to form blocks, which are then cut into desired shapes and sizes. Being a dairy product, paneer is a rich source of calcium and phosphorous, and being a compressed form of milk, it’s also an excellent source of protein. Paneer also contains a good amount of healthy fats that ensure good development and a lowered risk of lifestyle diseases.
Another point about paneer is that it’s quite neutral in flavor, which makes it perfect for little babies and young kids. This also means that paneer can be used in a variety of dishes, from sweet to savory. Today we’re listing our favorite healthy paneer recipes for babies and kids, which’ll ensure they get their share of nutrients.
40 Healthy Paneer Recipes for Babies and Kids
Let’s start with the most basic recipe – how to make paneer! Although paneer is available in every grocery store, most Indian homes still make their own paneer and swear it tastes better this way! GK Food Diary gives us the step by step instructions to go about making our own paneer at home.
Mixing paneer with vegetables is a great way to ensure your baby gets a load of nutrients in one go. This vegetable puree has a mix of healthy veggies in a delicious creamy puree.
Don’t let your kids be one who runs at the sight of greens on his plate! Start them young with a spinach paneer puree from GK Food Diary. With paneer and curd, this puree is packed with calcium and healthy fats.
Like we mentioned earlier, paneer is a versatile ingredient that goes well with fruit and vegetables. Treat your baby to this fruity paneer puree that is as good as a dessert or pudding!
Cauliflower has suddenly become a big deal in the western world, but we’ve always known its benefits here in India! Mom Junction has a recipe that combines the various nutrients of cauliflower along with the protein rich paneer.
We know that plain paneer is bland in neutral, but the beauty of making your own paneer is that you can change things up as you like! Here is a flavored paneer recipe, where you can add spices and herbs to your liking for some extra punch.
If your entire family is enjoying their dessert or kheer on a summer afternoon, don’t let baby feel left out! Of course, you don’t have to feed her anything she can’t have – just give her these cottage cheese fruit bowls from Baby Foode.
Ever considered putting paneer in pancakes? Yummy Toddler Food shows us that it can be done, and the results are great too! These soft pancakes are a great finger food for babies over 8 months.
Once you’ve decided to introduce baby to meat and fish, it may be tricky to find ways to feed your baby fish. Little Mashies solves this problem with this recipe that packs a protein punch as well as a good amount of healthy fats.
We love these cute little pancakes made with strawberries! Feeding Olive’s recipe is a genius way to sneak in some fruit for picky eaters, along with some protein on the way.
(The recipes listed below are suitable for children over the age of 1)
Paneer tikka is one of the most commonly ordered dishes when eating out, but this recipe proves that you can just as easily make it at home – with a fraction of the cost and with more nutrients!
Kuzhi paniyaram is something most South Indian households make during celebrations. Curry Trail combines this festive special with paneer for a unique dish.
13. Paneer Sandwich
Paneer is one of the easiest and quickest things to cook with, which is why it’s a great option for busy mornings. This paneer sandwich works well for breakfast or in the lunch box and will hardly take any time to prepare.
14. Paneer Fingers
Move over chicken nuggets and fish chips, paneer fingers are in the house! Indian Ambrosia has a delicious evening snack recipe that is just asking to be dipped in a delicious, healthy dip!
15. Paneer Popcorn
The next time your kids ask to go to the nearby fried chicken place, tell them you have something better! Akilas Kitchen has a recipe for paneer popcorn which is a great idea for a kiddie party.
16. Paneer Pakoda
Every home has their set of pakodas they make every monsoon, and now you can add this paneer pakoda recipe to the list as well!
Paneer and biscuits? Yes, we’ve gone ahead and combined the two for a delicious, cracker-like biscuit that’s miles better than regular store bought crackers!
Sometimes the simplest dishes are the most flavorful, like these pan fried paneer cubes. If you already have paneer cubes in your fridge, this dish will take just minutes to rustle up – great for impromptu hunger pangs!
19. Paneer Cutlet
Any Indian cook worth her salt can make cutlets or tikkis out of anything, so why should paneer be left out? These paneer cutlets can be pan fried and are a great low-oil alternative to deep fried pakoras.
If you want to do away with the oil completely, then put away those pakoras and cutlets and try these baked bread rolls from Whisk Affair instead. Don’t they look crispy and yum?
21. Paneer Omelette
If you want to add some extra bulk to your breakfast omelette, paneer is the easiest way to do it! GK Food Diary’s paneer omelette also works as a light weight dinner that’s filling without being heavy.
Paneer parathas are a popular option with kids and they’ll choose this over plain rotis any day! Take the health quotient a notch higher by using multi millet flour instead of plain atta.
Kids love Chinese food, but the one you get in restaurants isn’t exactly healthy. Satisfy your kids’ cravings without compromising on nutrition with this light and simple paneer fried rice recipe.
24. Cheesy Palak Paneer Paratha
We know kids love paneer paratha, so why not make the most of this and sneak in some palak? Cubes n Juliennes gives us a recipe that’s made cheesier and healthier – in short, more kid-friendly!
When you are adding paneer to your parathas, you might as well go the whole hog and add some veggies too! Kids will enjoy this paratha so much they won’t bother picking out the veggie bits!
Packaging is part of the attraction of food for kids, and Archana’s Kitchen does this well with these cute looking paneer ghee roasts. What’s more, it’s packed with broccoli and soya too!
When you’re adding paneer to parathas and fried rice, why not add it to uttappams too? Archana’s Kitchen has a paneer uttappam recipe, made healthier by using oats. Go for organic oats for best results.
28. Paneer Kheer
The natural creaminess of paneer makes it a great choice for desserts like kheer. This paneer kheer is a delicious take on a traditional festive special and will be loved by the whole family.
Toast is something everyone makes at least a couple of times a week, so why not turn it into a special dish? My Dainty Kitchen shows us how to use paneer to transform plain toast into a mini pizza!
Dudhi isn’t a vegetable most kids take kindly to, so Moms are forever looking for ways to sneak it in, but it’s tricky. However, Saffron Trail has the solution to make kids fall in love with dudhi – paneer dudhi koftas!
Aah, burfi – just the thought brings back memories of Diwali and weddings! Priyas Kitchenette makes a delicious burfi with paneer and gulkand – enough to turn a normal day into a celebration!
These paneer and soya lollipops from Batter up with Sujata are a protein power couple in an attractive kid-friendly form. No one is going to say ‘No’ when they see these cute lollipops!
Cigarettes are bad for you, but not these paneer cigar rolls! Chef in You shows us all the step by step instructions to make these yummy snacks which would be great for kids parties too.
34. Paneer Momos
Craving momos in the rain? Cook Click n Devour gives us a healthy steamed momos recipe stuffed with paneer. The fact that it uses paneer filling makes this a quick recipe, as opposed to chicken or shrimp momos.
If you’ve got leftover bread at home and the kids are tired of sandwiches, try out this bread pakoda recipe from Mints Recipes. This is perfect if you make paneer at home and can cut it into slices of a size you want.
Kids may not be fond of plain chapathis, but roll it up with a delicious filling and it suddenly turns into an exotic dish! Padhu’s Kitchen makes use of this fact with a simple recipe that kids will love for sure!
Muffins don’t always have to be on the sweet side, they are great when savory too. Slender Kitchen shows us how to make a kid-friendly, healthy breakfast with paneer, eggs and veggies. Perfect for weekend mornings!
Scrambled eggs taste great when they’re creamy and soft, and the addition of paneer takes this simple dish to another level! Check out the recipe at The Schmidty Wife.
39. Paneer Pav Bhaji
Is there any kid who doesn’t drool at the mention of pav bhaji? Hebbar’s Kitchen gives India’s number one street food a nutritional face lift by adding paneer to the mix.
Paneer may seem like an unlikely combination with pasta, but My Kids Lick the Bowl proves otherwise! Use large pasta shells so the paneer sauce can settle inside and the kids will have fun eating them.