That Spicy Chick

Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls

These Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls are quick and easy to make in just 30 minutes, and can be enjoyed for lunch, dinner, a quick snack, or as a party appetizer! Tender spiced paneer tikka and bell pepper filling, zesty pickled red onion & beetroot relish, and creamy and refreshing cilantro & mint sauce are layered and wrapped in a crisp and flakey paratha (Indian flatbread)!

Super tasty, quick, and easy. These Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls tick all the boxes! ✅ ✅ ✅

I made them for my uncle and dad, and the verdict was that these were the BEST paneer kathi rolls they’d ever eaten. That’s a HUGE compliment coming from them given that they’re both big time paneer (Indian cottage cheese) lovers, and massive foodies who’ve eaten A LOT of kathi rolls over the span of their lifetimes!

What is Paneer Kathi Roll?

A paneer kathi roll (also known as kati roll) is a popular Indian vegetarian street food snack. It’s an Indian version of a wrap, and typically made with a paratha (Indian layered flatbread) or roti, a spiced cooked paneer (Indian cottage cheese) cubes filling, and a coriander chutney (sauce). The flatbread is sometimes brushed with egg during cooking, and then layered with the chutney, paneer filling, and other condiments before being rolled up.

My version involves a spicy paneer tikka filling that’s cooked in a skillet, a tangy red onion & beetroot relish, and a delicious creamy cilantro & mint sauce! Everything gets layered on a crisp, hot, flakey and buttery paratha, then rolled up tightly and ready to be enjoyed!

The paneer marinade is the same foolproof tasty one that I’ve used in my Chicken Tikka Naanza (Naan Pizza!), Chicken Tikka Nachos, and for the paneer in this Paneer Butter Masala (Paneer Makhani). It’s also similar to the one I used for Spicy Indian Pan-fried Salmon, Oven Grilled Chicken Tikka Drumettes, and Tikka Masala Pork Ribs. If you’ve tried ANY of these recipes before, you KNOW these Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls are going to be super delish and EPIC! 😋

Front side view of three stacked paneer tikka kathi rolls.

Why This Recipe Works

  • It’s quick and easy to make and ready in 30 minutes!
  • The cilantro & mint sauce is wonderfully creamy, and full of refreshing and bright herby flavors. It complements the spicy paneer tikka filling very well!
  • The pickled red onion & beetroot relish balances out the spicy flavors of the paneer and adds some delicious tangy notes!
  • Using store-bought paneer and parathas makes this recipe quick and stress-free.
  • Whether you’re making it for an easy lunch or dinner, a party appetizer, or taking it to a potluck or picnic, these delicious rolls are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser!

Ingredients

Labeled ingredients for Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls on a wooden board.
Paneer Tikka Filling and Roll Ingredients
  • Greek Style Yogurt: Or use plain whole milk yogurt.
  • Spices & Seasonings: You’ll need some kosher salt, ground cayenne (or Kashmiri chili powder), garam masala, ground cumin, coriander powder, and turmeric powder. Feel free to use less or more of the ground cayenne to taste depending on your spice level preference. While store-bought garam masala works fine, homemade garam masala tastes SO much better! Check out my easy homemade garam masala recipe and use it for this recipe, and to bring life to all your homemade Indian food!
  • Ginger Garlic Paste: This can be found at Indian grocery stores or online. You could also use a combination of Ginger Paste and Garlic Paste if you have both in separate jars. Alternatively, smash fresh garlic and ginger using a mortar and pestle. You’ll need 2 tablespoons of paste for the paneer tikka marinade.
  • Tandoori Color Powder: This gives the paneer tikka its signature orange-reddish color. Substitute with a drop or two of red/orange food coloring if unavailable. Or you can omit it since it’s mainly for color and doesn’t have any flavor.
  • Paneer (Indian Cottage Cheese) Cubes: Thaw the paneer overnight in the fridge if using frozen, or set the package out on the counter for an hour or two. Paneer cubes will thaw quicker than paneer blocks or slabs, so I recommend purchasing the cubes. My favorite brand is Real Kitchen King as it’s delicious and doesn’t crumble as easily as some other brands. If using a paneer block or slabs, cut into 1.5cm cubes.
  • Unsalted Butter and Olive Oil: For cooking the paneer tikka filling. Feel free to use any cooking oil you prefer.
  • Red Onion and Bell Peppers: The veggies for the paneer tikka filling. I used half a red and half a yellow bell pepper, but you can use any color you like.
  • Frozen Plain Parathas: These are layered Indian flatbreads. They have a crispy, flakey texture and buttery flavor once cooked. Look for them in the frozen section of Indian grocery stores or large supermarkets/grocery stores such as Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. I used Kawan brand here, but Spring Home brand parathas are great too.
Labeled ingredients for pickled red onion and beetroot relish on a wooden board.
Pickled Red Onion & Beetroot Relish Ingredients
  • Pickled Red Onion & Beetroot Relish: The beetroot and sugar in this tangy relish helps balance the acidity from the red wine vinegar. Feel free to use honey, maple syrup, or any other sweetener of your choice. The full recipe for this relish is below in the recipe card.
  • Cilantro & Mint Sauce: This zippy, zingy, and refreshing creamy sauce is a MUST for these paneer tikka kathi rolls! I’ve included the recipe for this sauce in the recipe card below, but you can check out my Cilantro and Mint Sauce post for more detailed instructions with pictures.

Full ingredient list and amounts are in the recipe card below.

Side view of a paneer tikka kathi roll with the back part wrapped in foil.

How to Make Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls

1. Marinate the paneer: Combine all the ingredients for the paneer tikka marinade in a bowl except the paneer. Whisk until evenly combined, then add the paneer cubes and gently mix to coat. Set aside.

Marinated Indian cottage cheese cubes (paneer) in a mixing bowl.

2. Make the Pickled Red Onion & Beetroot Relish. Add the beetroot, red wine vinegar, water, kosher salt, and sugar to a small saucepot and bring to a simmer. Then turn the heat down and add the sliced red onion and green chili. Simmer for a minute, then remove from heat. Allow to cool to room temperature. Then transfer to a lidded jar and store in the fridge until ready to use.

Pickled red onion and beetroot relish in a bowl with a spoon.

3. Make the Cilantro & Mint Sauce. Combine all the ingredients in a blender jug or food processor. Cover and blend until smooth. Store in a sealed airtight jar in the fridge until ready to use.

Creamy cilantro and mint sauce in white round bowl.

4. Cook the Paneer Tikka Filling. Heat oil and butter in a large nonstick skillet or frying pan. Add the sliced red onion and bell peppers and sauté occasionally for a few minutes until softened. Add the marinated paneer to the pan and gently sauté to combine for a few minutes, or until everything is coated in the sauce and the paneer has cooked through.

Cooking paneer tikka filling in a skillet.
Cooked paneer tikka filling with onion and bell peppers in a skillet.

5. Cook the parathas. Follow the package instructions. It will involve cooking in a dry skillet (you don’t need to add any oil) on both sides for a minute or two.

Cooked parathas on a plate.

6. Assemble the Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls. Place sheets of foil on a flat work surface. Then place a cooked paratha on each sheet of foil and spread the cilantro & mint sauce on top. Top the parathas with the paneer tikka filling and pickled red onion & beetroot relish. Sprinkle with chopped coriander if you like. Fold one side of the paratha over the filling, then fold the other side over, overlapping the first side. Then wrap in the foil so that the filling is secure. (You can leave the top part unwrapped if serving immediately.) Serve and enjoy!

Assembling paneer tikka kathi roll on a sheet of foil.
Front view of three stacked paneer tikka kathi rolls on sheet of parchment paper.

Full detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.

Cook’s Tips

  • Use disposable plastic gloves when chopping the beetroot. This’ll save your hands from becoming purple. (I learned the hard way! 😅 )
  • Marinate the paneer overnight for more flavor. Paneer can be difficult to take on flavor because it isn’t very porous. The longer you marinate, the more flavorful the paneer tikka will be. However, since there are so many wonderful strong spices and seasonings in the marinade, even 15-20 minutes (while you prepare the rest of the components for the kathi rolls) will result in paneer tikka kathi rolls that are BOOMING with flavor!
  • Make ahead. To save time for this already super quick recipe, you can marinate the paneer and make the cilantro & mint sauce and pickled red onion & beetroot relish a few days in advance. Then all you have to do on the day of serving is cook the paneer tikka filling and parathas, and assemble the kathi rolls. The paneer tikka filling will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days, so feel free to cook it up in advance too.
Close-up side view of a paneer tikka kathi roll with the back part wrapped in foil.

FAQs

Are paneer kathi rolls vegan?

Since paneer is made from milk and there’s yogurt in the marinade, these paneer tikka kathi rolls are not vegan. However, you can make vegan kathi rolls by using extra firm tofu cubes instead of paneer, a dairy-free yogurt for the marinade, and cooking the paneer tikka filling in only oil (skip the unsalted butter). Also, omit the Greek style yogurt for the cilantro & mint sauce and use a vegan mayonnaise. Finally, make sure that the parathas you’re using are vegan – most are, but it’s best to double check there isn’t any butter included in the ingredients list.

Can I make kathi rolls using flour tortillas?

While nothing compares to the crisp and flakey texture of a warm cooked paratha, you can use flour tortillas (or gluten-free tortillas if needed) in a pinch to make paneer tikka wraps instead.

Where can I buy paneer?

You can buy frozen paneer cubes or blocks in the freezer section of Indian grocery stores, some large supermarkets that have a wide variety of international groceries, Whole Foods, Costco, Trader Joe’s and online. You can also find fresh paneer in the refrigerated section of most Indian grocery stores.

How long will it keep?

The paneer tikka filling will keep for 3-4 days in a sealed airtight container in the fridge. The cilantro & mint sauce will keep for 5-7 days in a sealed airtight jar/container in the fridge. The pickled red onion & beetroot relish will keep for up to 3 weeks in a sealed airtight jar/container in the fridge.

Can I make this with chicken?

Yes! Use 400 grams / 14 ounces of diced boneless and skinless chicken breasts (or thighs) instead of paneer to make chicken tikka kathi rolls instead. Use the same measurements for the marinade and cooking method as to make the chicken tikka filling. It will take 8-10 minutes for the chicken to fully cook through in the skillet.

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Close-up side view of a paneer tikka kathi roll with the back part wrapped in foil.

Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls

5 from 2 reviews

A tender spiced paneer tikka and bell pepper filling, zesty pickled red onion & beetroot relish, and creamy and refreshing cilantro & mint sauce are layered and wrapped in a crisp and flakey paratha!

  • Author: Lavina
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 20
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Lunch
  • Method: Sauté
  • Cuisine: Indian
  • Diet: Vegetarian
Scale

Ingredients

For the Paneer Tikka Filling:

  • 5 TBLS Greek Style Yogurt (or plain whole milk yogurt)
  • 1 TBLS freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 1.5 TSP Kosher Salt
  • 1 TSP ground Cayenne (or use Kashmiri chili powder), to taste
  • 1 TSP Garam Masala (store-bought works fine, but homemade garam masala tastes so much better)
  • 1 TSP ground Cumin
  • 1 TSP Coriander Powder
  • 1 TSP Turmeric Powder
  • 2 TBLS Ginger Garlic Paste (or use 1 tablespoon each of Ginger Paste and Garlic Paste)
  • ½ TSP Orange/Red Food Color Powder (optional – or use 12 drops of orange or red food coloring liquid)
  • 400 grams / 14 ounces Paneer Cubes – thawed if using frozen
  • 1 TBLS Unsalted Butter
  • 1 TBLS Olive Oil (or any other cooking oil)
  • ½ medium Red Onion – thinly sliced
  • 1 medium Bell Pepper (any color) – thinly sliced, then sliced in half (I used half of a red bell pepper and half of a yellow one)

For the Pickled Red Onion & Beetroot Relish:

  • ½ small Beetroot – peeled and finely chopped
  • ¾ cup Red Wine Vinegar (or use distilled white vinegar)
  • ½ cup Water
  • ¼ TSP Kosher Salt
  • 1 TBLS White Sugar (or other sweetener of choice)
  • ½ medium Red Onion – thinly sliced
  • 1 Green Chili (I used Bird’s Eye, but any small hot green chili will work) – chopped

For the Cilantro & Mint Sauce

  • 1 cup Coriander (Cilantro) – washed and pat-dried
  • ½ cup fresh Mint Leaves – washed and pat-dried
  • 24 Green Chilies (I used Bird’s Eye, but any small hot green chili will work), to taste – roughly chopped
  • 2 Garlic cloves – roughly chopped
  • ½ TSP ground Cumin
  • ½ TSP ground Cayenne (optional), to taste
  • 23 TSP freshly squeezed Lime Juice, to taste
  • ½ cup Mayonnaise (use full-fat for best texture)
  • 1 TBLS Greek Style Yogurt (or plain whole milk yogurt)
  • ¼ TSP Kosher Salt

To Assemble the Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls:

  • 6 Frozen Plain Parathas (I used Kawan brand)
  • Chopped Coriander (Cilantro), optional and to taste

Instructions

  1. Marinate the paneer: Combine the Greek style yogurt, lemon juice, kosher salt, ground cayenne, garam masala, ground cumin, coriander powder, turmeric powder, ginger garlic paste, and orange/red food color powder in a medium-sized mixing bowl. Whisk until evenly combined, then add the paneer cubes and gently mix with a spoon to coat. Allow to marinate while you prepare the condiments.
  2. Make the Pickled Red Onion & Beetroot Relish: Add the beetroot, red wine vinegar, water, kosher salt, and sugar to a small saucepot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Turn the heat down to medium-low once simmering and add the sliced red onion and green chili. Make sure that the red onion is fully submerged in the liquid. If not, add more red wine vinegar if needed. Simmer for a minute, then switch off the heat. Transfer to a jar with a lid and let cool, uncovered, for 45 minutes, or until it reaches room temperature. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
  3. Make the Cilantro & Mint Sauce: Combine all the ingredients in a high-speed blender or food processor. Cover and blend until smooth. (Note: You may need to uncover and push down the ingredients 1-2 times to make sure everything gets smoothly blended.) Transfer to a sealed airtight jar and store in the fridge until ready to use.
  4. Cook the Paneer Tikka Filling: Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil and 1 tablespoon of unsalted butter in a large nonstick skillet. Once hot and the butter is frothing, add the sliced red onion and bell pepper(s) and cook, sautéing occasionally until softened – about 4-5 minutes. Add the marinated paneer and gently sauté to combine for 2-3 minutes, until everything is coated in the marinade and the sauce no longer appears “wet”. The paneer cubes will firm up a little once cooked. Switch off the heat and set aside.
  5. To Assemble the Paneer Tikka Kathi Rolls: Cook the parathas in another dry nonstick skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes on each side (or as per package instructions). Place six sheets of foil on a flat work surface/kitchen countertop. Then place a cooked paratha on each sheet of foil. Spread the cilantro & mint sauce on top of the parathas. Top the center of each paratha with the paneer tikka filling, a tablespoon (or more as desired) of the pickled red onion & beetroot relish, and sprinkle with chopped coriander if desired. Fold one side of the paratha over the filling, then fold the other side so that it overlaps the first side. Tightly roll in the foil, then repeat and fold the remaining kathi rolls. (Note: You can leave the top unwrapped if serving immediately. Otherwise wrap the entire kathi roll in the sheet of foil to keep it warm for up to 45 minutes before serving.) Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  1. Ginger Garlic Paste: This is available in Indian grocery stores or online. You could also use a combination of Ginger Paste and Garlic Paste if you have both in separate jars. Alternatively, smash fresh garlic and ginger using a mortar and pestle. You’ll need 2 tablespoons of paste for the paneer tikka marinade.
  2. Paneer: Paneer cubes thaw quicker than paneer blocks or slabs, so I recommend purchasing the cubes. My favorite brand is Real Kitchen King as it tastes delicious and doesn’t crumble as easily as some other brands. If using a paneer block or slabs, cut into 1.5cm cubes. You can buy frozen paneer cubes or blocks in the freezer section of Indian grocery stores, some large supermarkets that have a wide variety of international groceries, Whole Foods, Costco, Trader Joe’s and online. You can also find fresh paneer in the refrigerated section of most Indian grocery stores.
  3. Frozen Parathas: These are layered Indian flatbreads. They have a crispy, flakey texture and buttery flavor once cooked. Look for them in the frozen section of Indian grocery stores or large supermarkets/grocery stores such as Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. I used Kawan brand, but Spring Home brand parathas are great too.
  4. Sweetener for pickled red onion & beetroot relish. Feel free to use maple syrup, honey, or another natural or artificial sweetener of your choice.
  5. Storing leftovers. Store leftover cilantro & mint sauce in a sealed airtight container in the fridge and consume within 5-7 days. Store leftover pickled red onion & beetroot relish in a sealed airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
  6. Make ahead. Although not necessary, you can marinate the paneer a day in advance and cover and store overnight in the fridge. Remove from the fridge 45-60 minutes before you plan to cook it to take the chill off. The paneer tikka filling will keep in the fridge for 3-4 days, so feel free to cook it up in advance too. You can also make the cilantro & mint sauce and pickled red onion & beetroot relish a few days in advance. Then all you have to do on the day of serving is cook the paneer tikka filling and parathas, and assemble the kathi rolls.
  7. Tips for marinating the paneer. If marinating the paneer overnight, cover the bowl with cling wrap or transfer the marinated paneer to a sealed airtight container before placing in the fridge. Remove from the fridge 45-60 minutes before you plan to cook it and set on the kitchen counter. Take off the cling wrap or container lid to prevent water droplets from dripping into the marinated paneer as it comes up to room temperature. You can cover with a paper towel instead once out of the fridge.
  8. Can I make kathi rolls using flour tortillas? While nothing compares to the crisp and flakey texture of a warm cooked paratha, you can use flour tortillas (or gluten-free tortillas if needed) in a pinch to make paneer tikka wraps instead.
  9. Can I make this with chicken? Use 400 grams / 14 ounces of diced boneless and skinless chicken breasts (or thighs) instead of paneer to make chicken tikka kathi rolls instead. Use the same measurements for the marinade and cooking method for a chicken tikka filling. It will take 8-10 minutes for the chicken to fully cook through in the skillet.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 paneer tikka kathi roll
  • Calories: 537
  • Sugar: 13.6g
  • Sodium: 746.8mg
  • Fat: 34.3g
  • Saturated Fat: 11.3g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 9g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 8.7g
  • Fiber: 3.5g
  • Protein: 14g
  • Cholesterol: 12.5mg

The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary based on several factors. It should only be used as a general guideline. For more information, please see our Disclosure.

This post may contain affiliate links. We are a part of the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you) by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. The nutritional information provided is approximate and can vary based on several factors. It should only be used as a general guideline. For more information, please see our Disclosure.