Is Paneer Gluten Free? Demystifying its Gluten Status

Is Paneer Gluten Free

If you follow a gluten-free diet navigating the food landscape can be challenging. I know how carefully you choose your meals to fend off gluten-induced problems.

Quick Answer

While dairy is usually celiac-friendly, most people still wonder, “is paneer gluten free?” Yes, paneer is generally considered gluten-free and is safe for celiacs. 

However, there’s a catch. Cross-contamination is highly likely when making paneer or Indian cottage cheese. 

Read on to know if you can have paneer or paneer-made dishes while following a wheat-free diet. 

Does Paneer Contain Gluten?

Does Paneer Contain Gluten

No, paneer does not naturally contain gluten. It’s an Indian cheese made by curdling milk with lemon juice, vinegar, or other acidic substances. Since all the ingredients are gluten-free, paneer also does not contain it. 

How Is Paneer Made? 

Paneer or cottage cheese is prepared by curdling milk with an acidic substance. Here’s the exact process used to extract thick cheese from milk. 

Step 1: Heat the Milk

Heat the Milk

Start by heating milk in a large pot over medium heat. It’s typically cow’s milk or buffalo milk that is used for making paneer, but other types of milk can also be used

Step 2:Add the Acidic Agent

Add the Acidic Agent

Once the milk reaches a near-boiling point, gradually add the acidic agent (lemon juice, vinegar, or curd) while stirring gently. The acid helps to curdle the milk and separate the curds from the whey.

Step 3: Curdle the Milk

Curdle the Milk

Keep stirring the milk gently after adding the acidic agent until the curds form. As the milk curdles, you’ll notice that the liquid (whey) becomes more transparent, and the curds become solid.

Step 4: Separate the Curds and Whey

Separate the Curds and Whey

Once the curdling process is complete, stop heating and let the mixture rest for a few minutes. Place a muslin cloth or cheesecloth-lined strainer over a large bowl or sink. 

Carefully pour the curdled milk mixture onto the cloth, allowing the whey to drain through while capturing the curds.

Step 5: Press and Shape the Paneer

Press and Shape the Paneer

Gather the ends of the cloth and gently twist it to squeeze out any excess whey. Place a heavy object, such as a plate or a pan, on top of the wrapped curds to apply pressure. 

This helps in pressing and shaping the paneer into a solid block. Allow it to set for a few hours.

Step 6: Cut and Store

Cut and Store Panner

Once the paneer has set, remove it from the cloth, and you’ll have a firm block of paneer. Cut it into desired shapes or cubes. Paneer can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days or used immediately in various recipes.

When Is Paneer Not Gluten Free?

When Is Paneer Not Gluten Free

Generally, paneer is gluten free, but there can be instances where it may contain gluten, such as cross-contamination. It occurs when gluten-containing ingredients such as wheat come into contact with other foods, leading to the transfer of gluten particles.

In the case of paneer, cross-contamination can happen during manufacturing or in restaurants where paneer is prepared alongside gluten-containing ingredients.

Note: Seasoned and spicy paneer often contains a plethora of ingredients, and there is a high risk of cross-contamination. Avoiding such factory-made options if you are gluten intolerant would be great. 

List Of Gluten-Free Paneer Brands

Gluten-Free Paneer Brands

The process of making paneer is quite daunting, and that’s why you might like to purchase it from the supermarket. Here are some brands that produce gluten-free paneer.

#1. Amul Paneer

Amul, a trusted brand, offers gluten-free paneer, ensuring a safe and delicious option for those with gluten sensitivities.

#2. Mother Dairy Paneer

Mother Dairy, known for its quality products, provides gluten-free paneer, catering to the needs of individuals following a gluten-free diet.

#3. Haldiram’s

Haldiram’s offers gluten-free paneer, allowing individuals with gluten allergies or dietary restrictions to enjoy their tasty and versatile paneer dishes.

#4. Deep Paneer

Deep Paneer, a brand famous for its authentic Indian products, offers gluten-free paneer, ensuring a safe and flavorful choice for gluten-sensitive individuals.

What Paneer Dishes Can You Have On A Gluten-Free Diet?

Gluten-Free Paneer Dishes

Even on a celiac diet, you can enjoy some amazing paneer dishes that are delicious and healthy. 

  • Palak Paneer: A creamy spinach and paneer curry made with gluten-free ingredients.
  • Paneer Bhurji: Scrambled paneer cooked with onions, tomatoes, and gluten-free spices.
  • Paneer Butter Masala: A rich and creamy tomato-based curry with gluten-free paneer.
  • Paneer Biryani: A flavorful rice dish layered with gluten-free paneer, spices, and herbs.
  • Paneer Pakora: Gluten-free batter-coated paneer fritters, perfect as a snack or appetizer. (Is Pakora Gluten-free?)


Q: Is a paneer dairy free?

A: No, paneer is not dairy free, as it contains milk. But you can easily find options such as tofu which contains soy milk. 

Q: Can I make gluten free paneer at home?

A: Yes, and in fact, making paneer at home is the best way to keep gluten particles away. Watch this video to learn about making delicious paneer. 

Q: Are cottage cheese and paneer the same?

A: Cottage cheese and paneer are similar in some ways, but they are not exactly the same. The key differences include texture, ingredients, production process, and culinary uses. 


Paneer is totally gluten-free, and you can enjoy this protein-rich food by eating it as it is or preparing delectable dishes. Make sure not to consume paneer dishes at restaurants, as they might have gluten particles. 

Also, when purchasing paneer from a store, go through the label and find its gluten status.

Stay tuned with Nothing Gluten for more insightful posts, and embrace your gluten-free lifestyle. 

A 23-year old tech geek with a passion for health and fitness, Jim is here to help you follow a healthy, gluten free life. The details provided by this student are simple enough for everyone to understand - and based on experience and research. While he doesn’t claim to be a health expert, he is dedicated to providing the best advice that he himself would follow.