Malai kofta

Malai kofta (creamy balls) a dish for special occasions and an alternative to meat balls. Malai kofta is a vegetarian dish made with potato and paneer (cottage cheese) and the stuffing, nuts and few spices and the gravy (curry) which is mild, fragrant, creamy and delicious. Malai kofta is a mughlai dish, and is very famous and popular in north India.

The gravy is made with fried onion paste and cream and no tomatoes are used. My malai koftas are so soft and just taste so delicious. In the koftas, the potato dough I have added more grated paneer where as in the shahi paneer koftas I have added more paneer in the stuffing, which makes both unique dish but both are very delicious to eat. Can view my shahi paneer malai kofta, which is made with more aromatic and flavoured ingredients.


    Onion paste

  • Onions (for deep frying) – 200 gms or 2
  • Water – 50 ml
  • Gravy

  • Butter – 3 tbsp
  • Oil – 2 tsp
  • Bay leaves – 1 or 2
  • Cloves – 3
  • Green cardamom – 3
  • Ginger and garlic paste – 2 tsp
  • Chilli powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Green cardamom powder – a big pinch
  • Cinnamon powder – a pinch
  • Garam masala – 1/4 tsp
  • Sugar – 1 tsp
  • Water – 200 ml or 1 cup
  • Cream – 1/2 cup
  • Milk – 1/2 cup or 50 ml
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Making veg balls

  • Potato (boiled) – 2
  • Paneer (grated) – 150 gms
  • Chilli powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Garam masala – 1/4 tsp
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Jeera powder – 1/2 tsp
  • Pepper powder – a pinch or 1/4 tsp
  • Green cardamom – a pinch
  • Green chillies (chopped) – 2
  • Stuffing

  • Almonds (badam, chopped) – 10
  • Cashew nut (kaju, chopped) – 10
  • Raisins (kishmish) – 2 tbsp or more
  • Paneer – 2 tbsp
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Green cardamom – a pinch
  • Green chillies (chopped) – 1/2 tsp
  • Oil for frying koftas
  • Plain flour (maida) – 1/4 cup
  • Garnishing

  • Cinnamon powder (optional) – a pinch
  • Garam masala (optional) – a pinch


    Preparing stuffed balls

  • Boil the potatoes, Peel, mash and add salt to taste.
  • Grate paneer, mix with potato, add all the spices and mix well like a dough mixture, keep it aside. Check the seasoning.
  • For the stuffing

  • Peel the skin of almond by soaking in hot water and keep it aside.
  • Chop almond, cashew nuts and green chillies mix with all the spices, salt and paneer, keep it ready.
  • Make small round balls of the potato dough and place a little of the prepared stuffing mixture in the center of each round.
  • Seal the edges and shape into stuffed round balls.
  • Take a plate put some plain flour (maida), place the koftas and roll, keep it aside.
  • Deep fry each kofta  till golden brown. It will take 2 to 3min. Drain and keep aside.
  • For the gravy

  • Slice the onions and deep fry for 12 to 15 min, until golden brown.
  • Make a paste of the fried onion in the mixer, can add little water (50ml) and grind.
  • Preheat the vessel, add oil and butter, when hot add whole spices stir for 5sec, and add onion paste and ginger and garlic paste and saute for 2 mins.
  • Add chilli powder, green cardamom powder, garam masala, cinnamon powder, mix well, and cook for 2min.
  • Add water 1/2cup and cook for 5 to 7min on medium flame, by closing the lid, stir in between.
  • Add milk, cream and water again 50ml, sugar, mix well, sprinkle again some cinnamon powder or garam masala as per your taste, a pinch, close the lid and cook on simmer for 10 to 12min, keep stirring in between. The gravy will begin to thicken.
  • In the end if any stuffing mixture remains can add and cook for 5min on lower flame, by closing the lid and switch off. ( you can add water 50 ml again if it the gravy thickens, as per your consistency).
  • While serving heat the gravy, pour in the serving dish and place the malai koftas.
  • Serve malai kofta with naan, phulkas or roti (chapathi).


  • In this malai kofta receipe , the koftas should be put in just before eating the dish or else they will turn soggy.
  • As cream and milk are added, the gravy becomes thick, so add water as per the consistency and boil it for 2 to 3min.
  • Taste and see, if any seasoning is required.
  • Can add the malai koftas in any gravy like butter panner or any creamy gravy which I have prepared earlier.

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