Indian Style Paneer Pasta Salad

Picnics have been our go to socially distanced activity with friends this summer. And nothing screams summer picnics more than pasta salad! The regular old pasta salad can get old after a few dozen picnics so we came up with this version on a whim to change up the flavors a little and boy did this pasta salad deliver!

We love paneer in any form and the crunchy exterior with the chewy interior is perfect for the pasta salad. Add in the Indian flavors of cilantro chutney and kitchen king masala and you have the perfect warm (or cold) pasta salad! 

Tips & Tricks

  • We prepped the onions/jalapeño mixture with the chutney and paneer in advance, works great if you are doing this as a make ahead meal because you can cook up the pasta at the end and toss it in
  • If you don’t have Kitchen King Masala at home, you can easily substitute garam masala and cumin powder 
  • Sub your favorite gluten free pasta – we love the Explore Red Lentil Pasta

Recipe Information

  • Prep time: 1 hour
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 3-4 entree servings


  • 1 English Cucumber sliced into quarters
  • 1.5 cup pasta of choice 
  • 1 block paneer cubed 
  • 1/2 onion diced 
  • 2 jalapeños diced
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp kitchen king masala
  • 2-3 tsp cilantro chutney (store bought or homemade: our recipe here)
  • Salt/Pepper to taste


  1. Boil pasta according to directions and keep aside
  2. In a pan with a few tbsp of olive oil, cook paneer cubes on medium heat until browned (~10 min); cook in batches to avoid over crowding and burning and set aside
  3. In the same pan, sauté onions, jalapeños, cumin, kitchen king and salt/pepper until soft ~5-7 min; let cool 
  4. In a bowl, combine pasta, paneer, cucumbers, onion/jalapeno mix and cilantro chutney with a few tsp of EVOO
  5. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours to allow flavors to meld