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Paneer Kathi Rolls

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Photograph by Peden + Munk, Food Styling by Adriana Paschen, Prop Styling by Ceci Garcia

Whenever I was tight on time in college (but plenty hungry), you’d likely find me at a nearby street vendor, awaiting my turn at one of their paneer kathi rolls. Despite the plethora of options, this popular Indian street food, also known as Paneer Frankie, was always my go-to: Creamy paneer cubes, bell peppers, and sliced onions, draped in a tangy, spiced yogurt marinade, and stuffed into flaky paratha, ready to eat streetside or cart along to my next lecture.

To recreate my favorite paneer kathi roll recipe at home, I had to sidestep the roti, which isn’t available in my local grocer; large flour tortillas make a worthwhile stand-in, but if you can find frozen parathas, feel free to use them. Other than the change in flatbread, these kathi rolls are quite traditional. Kashmiri is a bright red chili powder used frequently in India to add color to dishes. It isn’t particularly hot, but it does bring a certain warmth—if you can’t find it, use paprika instead.

Making the explosively flavorful paneer filling couldn’t be simpler: Toss the cheese and veggies in a mixing bowl with spiced yogurt, scrape the marinated paneer and friends into a sauté pan, and cook until the vegetables are tender. Pile onto tortillas with a garnish of chaat masala and fresh cilantro then—here’s the important part—sear the wrapped tortillas so they get golden and crispy on the outside. Serve with green chutney (this one made with green chiles and coconut is particularly nice, but a store-bought version is fine) for dunking or spooning over each bite. If you want to take them to the park, the beach, or to your next class, wrap them first in parchment, then in foil to keep all the goodness tucked inside.

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What you’ll need

Recipe information

  • Total Time

    25 minutes

  • Yield

    4 servings


1 medium onion, cut into 1½" pieces
1 medium green bell pepper, halved, ribs and seeds removed, cut into 1½" pieces
2 6-oz. packages whole-milk paneer, cut into 1" cubes
½ cup plain whole-milk yogurt (not Greek)
5 garlic cloves, finely grated
1 2" piece ginger, peeled, finely grated
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp. Kashmiri chile powder or paprika
2 tsp. Diamond Crystal or 1¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. garam masala
½ tsp. cumin seeds
½ tsp. ground turmeric
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
3 Tbsp. coarsely chopped cilantro
4 10"-diameter flour tortillas
Chaat masala (for sprinkling; optional)
Green chutney and hot sauce (for serving; optional)


  1. Step 1

    Gently toss 1 medium onion, cut into 1½" pieces, 1 medium green bell pepper, halved, ribs and seeds removed, cut into 1½" pieces, and two 6-oz. packages whole-milk paneer, cut into 1" cubes, in a medium bowl to combine; set aside. Whisk ½ cup plain whole-milk yogurt (not Greek), 5 garlic cloves, finely grated, one 2" piece ginger, peeled, finely grated, 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice, 1 Tbsp. Kashmiri chile powder or paprika, 2 tsp. Diamond Crystal or 1¼ tsp. Morton kosher salt, 1 tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. garam masala, ½ tsp. cumin seeds, and ½ tsp. ground turmeric in a small bowl to combine. Scrape into bowl with onion mixture and toss gently until vegetables and paneer are coated.

    Step 2

    Heat 3 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium. Add vegetable and paneer mixture, making sure to scrape in any sauce left in bowl, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, 8–10 minutes. Remove from heat; mix 3 Tbsp. coarsely chopped cilantro into filling.

    Step 3

    Working one at a time, place four 10"-diameter flour tortillas on a surface and spoon ½ cup filling down the centers, leaving a 1" border on left and right sides. Sprinkle with a pinch of chaat masala if desired. Fold left sides of tortillas up and over filling, then roll up to create tubes (ends will be open).

    Step 4

    Working in 2 batches, cook kathi rolls, seam side down, in a clean dry large nonstick skillet over medium heat until golden underneath and sealed shut, about 2 minutes. Turn over and cook until golden on other side, about 2 minutes. Wrap in parchment, then foil, tucking in ends. Serve with green chutney and hot sauce if desired.

    Do Ahead: Kathi rolls can be made 3 hours ahead. Store at room temperature.

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