Punjabi thali recipe

Punjabi thali recipe

30 Mins
6-7 people
10 Mins



Hey there, it's Ajay Chopra, and I'm thrilled to welcome you back to my YouTube channel! Every month, I make a promise to bring you a new culinary adventure, and today, we're diving into the vibrant world of Punjabi cuisine with a tantalizing Punjabi thali. But before we get into the nitty-gritty of the recipe, let me take you on a little journey of my own.


Growing up, I was always surrounded by the aromas of Punjabi spices wafting from my mother's kitchen. It's where my love affair with Punjabi cuisine began. Every dish, from the hearty aloo shimla mirch to the fragrant matar paneer, holds a special place in my heart. So, when I bring you this Punjabi thali recipe, I'm not just sharing flavors; I'm sharing memories of home.




How to Make a Delicious Punjabi Thali at Home


Punjabi Kadhi Pakora



  • 2 tbsp Mustard oil
  • 1 Dry red chilli
  • 1 tsp Mustard seeds
  • ½ tbsp Jeera (cumin seeds)
  • 1 tsp Hing (asafoetida)
  • ½ cup Chopped onion
  • 1 tsp Ginger, chopped
  • 1 tsp Green chilli, chopped
  • 1 tbsp Kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • 1 tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1½ tsp Red chilli powder
  • ½ tbsp Coriander powder
  • 1 cup Sour curd
  • Water, as required
  • 2 tbsp Besan (gram flour)
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp Pounded masala (see below)

For Pakora:

  • 1 cup Chopped onion
  • ½ tsp Chopped ginger
  • ½ tsp Chopped green chilli
  • 1 tbsp Chopped coriander
  • ¼ cup Buttermilk
  • ¾ cup Besan
  • Water, as required
  • Oil, for deep frying

For Pounded Masala:

  • 14-15 Black pepper
  • 1 tsp Ajwain (carom seeds)
  • ½ tbsp Jeera
  • 1 Dry red chilli





  1. Prepare Pounded Masala:

    • Dry roast black pepper, ajwain, jeera, and dry red chilli in a pan on low flame.
    • Pound them into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle. Set aside.
  2. Make Pakora:

    • In a bowl, mix chopped onion, ginger, green chilli, coriander, red chilli powder, and salt.
    • Add buttermilk and besan to make a thick batter.
    • Heat oil in a pan, drop small portions of the batter, and deep fry until golden brown. Set aside.
  3. Prepare Punjabi Kadhi:

    • Heat mustard oil in a pan, add dry red chilli, mustard seeds, jeera, and hing. Let them crackle.
    • Add chopped onion, ginger, green chilli, and kasoori methi. Saute until golden brown.
    • Add turmeric powder, red chilli powder, and coriander powder. Cook for a minute.
    • In a bowl, mix sour curd, water, besan, red chilli powder, and salt. Add this mixture to the pan and cook for 8-10 minutes.
    • Add pounded masala, fried pakoras, and cook for 1-2 minutes.



Matar Paneer Pulav



  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 1 Mace
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 1 Black cardamom
  • 3 Green cardamom
  • 4-5 Cloves
  • 8-9 Black pepper
  • ½ cup Sliced onion
  • 1 tbsp Ginger & garlic paste
  • ½ tsp Turmeric powder
  • ½ tbsp Salt
  • ½ tsp Garam masala
  • 1 tbsp Kasoori methi
  • ½ cup Green peas
  • 1 cup Soaked basmati rice
  • 2 cups Water
  • 1 cup Paneer cubes
  • 5-6 Cashews





  1. Prepare Pulav:
    • Heat oil in a pan, add bay leaves, mace, cinnamon, black cardamom, green cardamom, cloves, and black pepper.
    • Add sliced onion and sauté until golden brown.
    • Stir in ginger & garlic paste, turmeric powder, salt, garam masala, and kasoori methi. Cook for a minute.
    • Add green peas and sauté.
    • Add soaked rice and mix well.
    • Meanwhile, deep fry paneer cubes and cashews until light golden brown.
    • Add fried paneer cubes and cashews to the pulav.
    • Add water, cover with a lid, and cook on medium-low flame for 15-20 minutes.



Aloo Capsicum Ki Sabzi



  • 1 tbsp Oil
  • ½ tbsp Jeera (cumin seeds)
  • 2 cups Potato cubes
  • ½ tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • ½ cup Chopped onion
  • 1 tsp Chopped ginger
  • 1 tsp Chopped green chilli
  • 1 cup Capsicum dices
  • ½ tsp Turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp Red chilli powder
  • ½ tbsp Coriander powder
  • ½ tsp Garam masala powder
  • ½ cup Chopped tomatoes
  • Water, as required
  • 1 tbsp Chopped coriander



  • Heat oil in a pan, add jeera and let it splutter.
  • Add potato cubes, turmeric powder, and salt. Cover and cook for 8-10 minutes on medium flame.
  • Remove potatoes from the pan.
  • Add chopped onion to the same pan and sauté until golden brown.
  • Add chopped ginger, green chilli, capsicum, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, coriander powder, and garam masala powder. Sauté.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and cook for 5-6 minutes.
  • Add sautéed potato cubes, water, and cook on low flame.
  • Finally, add chopped coriander and mix.



Masale Wala Paneer



  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 2 Black cardamom
  • 3 Green cardamom
  • 1 Star anise
  • 2 Bay leaves
  • 4-5 Cloves
  • 1 inch Cinnamon
  • 2 Green chillies, slit
  • ½ cup Chopped onion
  • ½ cup Curd
  • 2 tbsp Besan (gram flour)
  • 1 tbsp Kasoori methi (dried fenugreek leaves)
  • 1 tbsp Red chilli powder
  • ½ tbsp Turmeric powder
  • ½ tbsp Coriander powder
  • 1 tbsp Ginger & garlic paste
  • ½ tbsp Salt
  • ½ cup Fresh tomato puree
  • Water, as required
  • 200 g Paneer cubes
  • ½ tbsp Chopped coriander
  • 1 tbsp Butter




  1. Prepare Masala:

    • Heat a pan, add jeera, coriander seeds, saunf, and black pepper. Lightly toast them.
    • Pound into a coarse texture using a mortar and pestle. Set aside.
  2. Make Paneer:

    • Deep fry paneer cubes until light golden brown. Set aside.
  3. Cook Paneer:

    • Heat oil in a pan, add black cardamom, green cardamom, star anise, bay leaves, cloves, cinnamon, and green chillies. Let them crackle.
    • Add chopped onion and cook until brown.
    • Stir in ginger & garlic paste, besan, curd, kasoori methi, red chilli powder, turmeric powder, coriander powder, and salt. Cook for a minute.
    • Add fresh tomato puree and cook for 5-6 minutes.
    • Add water and cook for a while.
    • Add fried paneer cubes and cook for 5-10 minutes on medium flame.
    • Finally, add butter, chopped coriander, and pounded masala. Mix well.



Pudina Lachha Paratha



  • 1 cup Wheat flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Oil
  • Water, as required
  • ¼ cup Chopped mint leaves
  • 1 tbsp Ghee



  • In a bowl, mix wheat flour, salt, oil, and water to form a soft dough. Allow it to rest for 5-10 minutes.
  • Take a portion of the dough, roll it into a flat circle.
  • Apply oil, sprinkle chopped mint leaves, and dust with flour.
  • Fold into pleats, shape into a round, and roll into a flat circle.
  • Roast on a pan from both sides until cooked.
  • Apply ghee and serve hot.



Gud Ka Halwa



  • 1 cup Suji (semolina)
  • 1 cup Jaggery
  • Water, as required
  • 2 tbsp Ghee
  • 1 tbsp Sliced almonds
  • 1 tbsp Sliced pistachios
  • 4-5 Khoya peda
  • ½ tsp Cardamom powder




  1. Prepare Halwa:
    • Heat ghee in a pan, add suji, and toast on low flame.
    • Meanwhile, in another pan, add water and jaggery. Bring it to a boil.
    • Once suji is toasted, add sliced almonds and pistachios. Saute.
    • Add boiling jaggery water to the suji, along with khoya peda and cardamom powder. Mix well.
    • Cook until the suji softens.



Pede Wali Lassi



  • 1 cup Curd
  • 2 tbsp Powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp Cardamom powder
  • 2-3 Pede
  • 5-6 strands Kesar (saffron)
  • Water, as required
  • ¼ cup Crushed ice



  • In a bowl, add chilled curd, powdered sugar, cardamom powder, pede, and kesar. Whisk well.
  • Once smooth, add water and crushed ice. Whisk again.
  • Serve chilled in a tall glass.




About the Recipe:


Indulge in the rich flavors of Punjab with this exquisite Punjabi thali. Bursting with spices and aromas, each dish in this thali offers a unique culinary experience. From the creamy matar paneer pulao to the flavorful masaledar paneer, every bite is a celebration of Punjabi cuisine's rich heritage and tradition. Whether you're a seasoned chef or a novice in the kitchen, this Punjabi thali recipe is sure to impress.



Cooking Tips:


  1. Perfecting Pulao: For fluffy and fragrant pulao, soak the rice for at least 30 minutes before cooking. This ensures each grain cooks evenly and absorbs the flavors of the spices.
  2. Paneer Perfection: To achieve that golden-brown crust on your paneer, ensure the pan is hot before adding the paneer cubes. Fry them until they turn crisp on the outside while remaining soft and creamy on the inside.
  3. Balancing Flavors: Adjust the spice levels according to your taste preferences. If you prefer a milder flavor, reduce the amount of red chili powder and green chilies in the recipes.



Pairing Guide:


Pair your Punjabi thali with some freshly baked naan or fluffy basmati rice for a complete meal experience. For a refreshing accompaniment, serve with cucumber raita or a tangy mango chutney. Don't forget to end your meal on a sweet note with a traditional Punjabi dessert like gulab jamun or kheer.




10 Frequently Asked Questions about Punjabi Thali:


  1. What is a Punjabi thali?
    • A Punjabi thali is a traditional Indian meal consisting of a variety of dishes served together on a single platter. It typically includes a combination of curries, rice, bread, and accompaniments.
  2. What are some popular dishes included in a Punjabi thali?
    • Some popular dishes commonly found in a Punjabi thali include dal makhani, paneer tikka, butter chicken, aloo gobi, and various types of bread like naan and roti.
  3. Can I customize the dishes in a Punjabi thali?
    • Yes, you can customize the dishes in a Punjabi thali according to your preferences and dietary restrictions. Feel free to swap out ingredients or adjust spice levels to suit your taste.
  4. Is Punjabi cuisine spicy?
    • Punjabi cuisine is known for its bold and robust flavors, which often include a blend of aromatic spices. While some dishes can be spicy, the heat level can be adjusted according to personal preference.
  5. What makes Punjabi thali different from other Indian thalis?
    • Punjabi thalis are characterized by their rich and hearty dishes, often featuring ingredients like ghee, paneer, and a variety of lentils. They also tend to include a greater variety of bread options compared to other regional thalis.
  6. Can I find Punjabi thalis in restaurants outside of India?
    • Yes, many Indian restaurants around the world offer Punjabi thalis as part of their menu. They provide an opportunity for diners to sample a variety of Punjabi dishes in one meal.
  7. What are some essential spices used in Punjabi cooking?
    • Essential spices used in Punjabi cooking include cumin, coriander, turmeric, garam masala, and red chili powder. These spices lend depth and complexity to Punjabi dishes.
  8. Is Punjabi cuisine vegetarian-friendly?
    • Yes, Punjabi cuisine offers a wide array of vegetarian dishes, including dal makhani, chole, palak paneer, and baingan bharta. Vegetarian options are an integral part of Punjabi thalis.
  9. What beverages pair well with a Punjabi thali?
    • Traditional Punjabi beverages like lassi (a yogurt-based drink) and chaas (buttermilk) complement the flavors of a Punjabi thali perfectly. For those who prefer non-alcoholic options, these beverages provide a refreshing and cooling contrast to the spices.
  10. Are Punjabi thalis suitable for special occasions?
    • Absolutely! Punjabi thalis are versatile and can be served on various occasions, from festive celebrations to casual gatherings. Their diverse range of flavors and dishes make them an ideal choice for any special event.


Feel free to explore more about Punjabi cuisine and experiment with different combinations to create your own Punjabi thali experience!