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Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer

This recipe is a vegan version of the Indian spinach curry, Palak Paneer, that uses tofu instead of the typical Indian cheese ‘paneer’: Palak Tofu. It’s rich, creamy and delicious!

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer with basmati rice and naan
Palak Paneer was always my #1 choice in Indian restaurants (before I went vegan, obviously). It’s a creamy spinach curry (Palak) with the traditional Indian cheese (Paneer).

To make this dish vegan, we’re using tofu instead of paneer. Firm tofu is actually consistency-wise very similar to paneer, so it’s the perfect substitution! We’re adding kala namak (Himalayan Black Salt) to the tofu to give it a similar taste. Delicious!

For this dish, we’re going to use a LOT of spinach, which is rich in iron and calcium. The Palak Tofu Paneer uses 4 large handfuls of spinach, so I’d say this dish is the most delicious way of getting an iron boost.

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer with basmati rice and naan

How to make Vegan Palak Tofu

The ingredients

You will need: 

  • firm tofu
  • lots (!) of spinach
  • coconut milk
  • tomato
  • oil
  • spices
    • kala namak (black salt; can be subbed with regular salt but use less of it)
    • curry powder
    • ginger powder
    • garam masala
    • salt

The basic steps

tofu in panStep 1: Cut the tofu in cubes. Cook the tofu cubes in a large pan with oil, add kala namak and curry powder, until they are crispy, then set them aside.

spinach in panStep 2: Cook all the spinach until it’s wilted.

wilted spinach in panStep 3: You might have to work in 2 batches because we’re using a lot of spinach.

wilted spinach, coconut milk and spices in panStep 4: Reduce heat. Add the coconut milk, ginger powder, salt, and garam masala.

mixing spinach and coconut milkStep 5: Use a handheld blender to blend the spinach curry. 

spinach curry and tomatoStep 6: Add one chopped tomato to the curry. Let it cook until it’s hot and until the tomato is soft.

golden tofu and spinach curryStep 7: Now let’s combine the cubed tofu with the spinach curry.

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer in panStep 8: A quick stir and it’s ready to serve!

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer with basmati rice and naan

Serve the Palak Tofu with …

I’ve had this Palak Tofu with homemade naan and fluffy basmati rice. What a feast!

More vegan curry recipes you will love

I hope you will enjoy this vegan Palak Tofu Paneer Curry as much as I did! Let me know if you give it a try!

And don’t forget to rate the recipe if you like it, this helps other users figure out if it is worth a try! 

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Cheers, Bianca

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer with basmati rice and naan

Vegan Palak Tofu Paneer

Bianca Haun | Elephantastic Vegan
This is a vegan version of the indian spinach curry "Palak Paneer". It uses tofu instead of the traditional indian cheese. The spinach curry is creamy & delicious and rich in iron!
4.69 from 16 votes
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 50 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Fusion, Indian, Vegan
Servings 2 people
Calories 437 kcal


Tofu 'Paneer'

  • 12 oz firm tofu
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil (or any other neutral plant-based oil)
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon kala namak

Spinach Curry

  • 4 large handfuls spinach fresh
  • 1 cup full-fat canned coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon ginger powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
  • 1 tomato diced


  • Cut the tofu in cubes. Bring a large pan to high heat, add the oil, cubed tofu, curry powder, and kala namak. Give it a stir. Let it cook until the tofu is golden and with slightly crispy edges. Set aside the tofu in a bowl.
  • In the same large pan, add the spinach and cook it until it wilted (you might have to work in 2 batches because it's a lot of spinach). Then reduce the heat and add the coconut milk, ginger powder, salt, and garam masala.
  • Use a handheld blender to blend the spinach curry.
  • Add the chopped tomato to the curry and let it cook (bring up the heat again) for another 3-4 minutes until hot and until the tomatoes are soft.
  • Then add the tofu paneer to the spinach curry, give it a quick stir, and it's ready to serve! Basmati rice and homemade naan are THE perfect side dishes!


Calories: 437kcalCarbohydrates: 13gProtein: 20gFat: 36gSaturated Fat: 23gSodium: 2107mgPotassium: 729mgFiber: 4gSugar: 2gVitamin A: 6138IUVitamin C: 26mgCalcium: 299mgIron: 8mg
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