Indian Vegetarian Paneer Frankie Kathi Roll Recipe

How to make the best healthy vegetarian Paneer Kathi Roll recipe.

Vegetarian Paneer Roll, also known as a Paneer Kathi Roll or Paneer Frankie, is a popular Indian street food. Variations of the grab-and-go snack were invented in Mumbai and Calcutta, inspired by Lebanese pita-stuffed sandwich wraps.

Our quick & easy homemade Paneer Roll recipe features simple and affordable ingredients like yogurt, ginger, garlic, garam masala, cumin, turmeric, tomato paste, cilantro, mint, lemon, cashews, paneer, red bell pepper, onion and crispy paratha flatbread.

Our healthy Paneer Kathi Roll can be enjoyed as a quick snack, light lunch with a salad or soup, or as an appetizer at an Indian-inspired dinner party.

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Save our Indian Vegetarian Paneer Frankie Kathi Roll recipe to Pinterest!
Save our Indian Vegetarian Paneer Frankie Kathi Roll recipe to Pinterest!

What Is A Kathi Roll?

A Paneer Roll, also known as a Paneer Kathi Roll or Paneer Frankie, is a popular Indian street food.

Order a Paneer Roll on an Indian holiday and you’ll enjoy a warm paratha flatbread filled with slices of spiced yogurt paneer, green chutney and crunchy red bell peppers and onions.

The Paneer Kathi Roll epitomizes authentic Mughlai culinary traditions. Kathi Rolls are one of India’s most ubiquitous grab-and-go snacks.They are typically served with a skewered barbecued kebab filling but we love our quick and easy homemade healthy vegetarian version.

The word “kathi” means stick. Traditionally, street food kebab meat was cooked on metal or wooden skewers. So any type of Kathi Roll refers to the fact that the paratha flatbread is filled with meat, vegetables or paneer cheese that is roasted on a skewer.

Kathi Roll vs Frankie Roll

The Frankie Roll originated in Mumbai while Kathi Rolls were invented in Calcutta.

The Frankie Roll is said to have been created by Amarjit Tibbs of Mumbai. The chef was inspired by Lebanese pita sandwiches that are traditionally filled with falafel or shawarma. He launched the concept as a street food in Mumbai, making sure to give the dish a local Indian twist. He named the Frankie Roll after his favorite cricket player, Frank Worrell.

Kathi Rolls from Calcutta are typically filled with cutlets or grilled pieces of meat, topped with onions, cucumber or bell peppers, along with chutney and fragrant chaat masala.

The two famous Indian street food sandwich wraps aren’t very different so feel free to use the terms Paneer Kathi Roll and Paneer Frankie interchangeably.

Vegetarian Paneer Roll recipe ingredients.
Vegetarian Paneer Roll recipe ingredients.

Travel to India by CookingPaneer Kathi Roll at Home

I love traveling through Asia.

My first visit to Asia had me living in South Korea for a year as a teacher and it’s where I was first introduced to fermented vegetables like kimchi.

After my contract ended in Seoul I travelled throughout Asia for 6 months, visiting the PhilippinesIndonesiaMalaysiaSingaporeCambodiaLaosMyanmar, ThailandVietnamThe Maldives and India.

I spent over a month traveling through India. I started in the capital, eating my way through the bustling markets and fine dining restaurants in Delhi. I then embarked on a magical weekend getaway to awe-inspiring Taj Mahal in Agra. In India’s north you’ll find plenty of barbecue, Tandoori Gobi and wheat based side dishes like scorched naan bread.

For the second half of my Indian adventure I explored the southern state of Kerala. The south is famous for its seafood, coconut, tropical fruits, and rice based side dishes like crispy dosa. The colonial capital of Cochin was formerly run by the Portuguese. It’s also one of the only places in India you can find beef on a menu.

After enjoying a jaunt to the Maldives my India trip came to a close in the Bollywood capital, bustling and cosmopolitan Mumbai. The city is famous for its specialty street foods likePaneer Kathi Roll and fine dining restaurants at opulent luxury hotels. The Taj Mahal Palace in particular serves one of the world’s most famous Afternoon Teas.

What I found most fascinating is India’s distinct regional food cultures. Much like the regional cuisines found in FranceGermanyItaly or Spain, each city in India had its own local speciality.

After you’ve traveled to India, return home to prepare an authentic and fragrant feast for friends and family featuring this flavourfulPaneer Roll recipe.

Toss paneer slices in marinade. In a skillet saute onions and red bell peppers.
Toss paneer slices in marinade. In a skillet saute onions and red bell peppers.

Where To Eat VegetarianPaneer Roll

If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to local Indian restaurants that serves a traditionalPaneer Kathi Roll.

Haven’t traveled to India before? It may be helpful to first sample aPaneer Roll at a local Indian restaurant to better understand how the snack is served. You can assess the amount of paneer to fill in each wrap, ideal spicy heat level of the marinade and other complimentary dishes to serve at the table.

In Toronto, popular Indian restaurants that may serve a vegetarian Paneer Roll include Udupi PalaceLahore Tikka House and Kothur Indian Cuisine.

Join Dobbernationloves founder Andrew Dobson in the kitchen by signing up for a fun virtual cooking class! Classes begin with a cocktail that you can sip while preparing 2-3 recipes that are curated around a unique culinary theme. Check out our current Cooking Class Schedule!

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Warm Paneer Kathi Roll filling.
Warm Paneer Kathi Roll filling.

My Family LovesPaneer Kathi Roll

I’ll never forget my first experience tasting an authenticPaneer Kathi Roll.

It was my last day in Mumbai so was excited to scour the city for it’s best street food snacks.

My local culinary tour guide took me to sample his favourite Paneer Roll vendor and I quickly gobbled up the savoury snack. He then took me to a hip and trendy street food-inspired restaurant called Colaba Social, which served its own unique take on the classic Paneer Frankie.

After traveling throughout India and eating at some of the world’s best Indian restaurants I was excited to share my love for the simple Paneer Roll with family in Toronto.

I’ve hosted many Indian-themed feasts, showcasing dishes from Delhi to Bengal via fragrant curries, fresh salads and hearty soups.

When I finally introduced my parents to the Paneer Kathi Roll their eyes bulged with glee. I knew they’d both enjoy the healthy vegetarian dish because they love crispy flatbread, soft paneer cheese and chutney flavoured with fresh herbs.

If you’ve traveled to India on holiday there is no better way to share your adventure at home with family and friends at home then by serving our homemade Paneer Roll recipe!

Healthy Vegetarian Paneer Roll assembly.
Healthy Vegetarian Paneer Roll assembly.

Health Benefits

Our healthy vegetarian Paneer Roll recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!

Packed with calcium and friendly probiotic bacteria, sour cream and yogurt help keep your bones strong and your gut healthy. Yogurt may also help reduce the risk of obesity, diabetes and some types of cancer. 

It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.

Ginger contains at least 14 phytochemicals, many of which have impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It also has a good source of copper, which supports your bones, blood and nervous system. 

A rich source of blood-building iron, cumin may also help balance your blood sugar levels and reduce bad cholesterol. It is also traditionally used as a digestive aid.

The star component of turmeric is curcumin, a potent phytochemical that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It is often prescribed in Indian Ayurvedic medicine to help relieve arthritis, aid digestion and inhibit the growth of cancers. 

Rich in a group of phytochemicals called carotenoids, tomatoes may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and provide protection against cancer. Tomatoes are also a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C.

A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals. 

Fresh mint is antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, and can have a calming effect on the digestive system. It is also a good source of folate, which supports blood health. 

A rich source of phytochemicals and vitamin C, lemons help boost your immune system and neutralize free radicals that cause disease and skin aging. Lemons also protect against heart disease and help improve blood flow to the brain.

Cashews are low in sugar and rich in fibre, heart-healthy fats, and plant protein. They’re also a good source of copper, magnesium, and manganese — nutrients important for energy production, brain health, immunity, and bone health.

Chili has been proven to help reduce the duration of sickness, prevent heart disease, and promote weight loss. 

Consuming dairy products (such as milk and cheese) provides health benefits — especially improved bone health. Dairy foods provide nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. These nutrients include calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.

Bell Peppers are an incredible source of vitamins C and A, which support your skin and immune system. They also provide beneficial carotenoid compounds such as beta-carotene, which has been shown to reduce the risk of certain cancers.

Onions are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

Paneer Roll: Slather paratha with herb chutney and fill with sauteed vegetables.
Paneer Roll: Slather paratha with herb chutney and fill with sauteed vegetables.

Paneer Roll Recipe Cooking Tips

If it’s your first time cooking a homemade Paneer Kathi Roll recipe be sure to review our detailed step-by-step recipe below. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you started.

  • Use a large nonstick skillet to cook the paneer and vegetables to ensure they don’t stick to the pan.
  • We’ve used canola oil in this recipe but you can substitute for peanut oil or coconut oil.
  • We’ve used plain yogurt as the paneer marinade but you can substitute for authentic Indian curd.
  • The fresh herb chutney is prepared with cashews and lemon juice but can you substitue for blanched almonds and lime juice if you prefer.
  • You can serve Paneer Roll on their own as an on-the-go snack, light lunch or an appetizer at an Indian-themed dinner party.
  • You can purchase frozen paratha flatbread at your local Indian supermarket or make homemade paratha.
Serve two Paneer Kathi Rolls as a light lunch or on-the-go snack.
Serve twoPaneer Kathi Rolls as a light lunch or on-the-go snack.

What To Serve withPaneer Roll

Paneer Roll is one of our favourite quick and easy Indian street food snacks.

The healthy vegetarian recipe can be served as an on-the-go snack, light lunch all on its own or as a side dish or appetizer at dinner.

If you’re hosting an Indian-themed potluck or buffet you may enjoy serving this Paneer Roll recipe with these popular Indian recipes:

Kids and adults both love this flavourful Paneer roll recipe that's easy to make at home.
Kids and adults both love this flavourful Paneer roll recipe that’s easy to make at home.

You May Also Enjoy These Vegetarian Recipes…

Now you're an expert on how to make the best vegetarian Paneer Kathi Roll recipe!
Now you’re an expert on how to make the best vegetarian Paneer Kathi Roll recipe!

How To Make VegetarianPaneer Kathi Roll

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Vegetarian Paneer Kathi Rolls

How to make healthy vegetarian Paneer Kathi Roll. Our Paneer Frankie recipe is an Indian street food snack is easy to make at home.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time30 mins
Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: Paneer Frankie, Paneer Kathi Roll, Paneer Roll
Servings: 10
Calories: 374kcal

Equipment

  • French knife
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • blender
  • Spatula Flipper

Ingredients

Marinade

  • 100 g Plain Yogurt
  • 2 tbsp Ginger minced
  • 2 Garlic Cloves
  • 1 tsp Garam Masala
  • 1 tsp Ground Cumin
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Turmeric
  • 2 tsp Tomato Paste

Herb Chutney

  • 3 cups Cilantro
  • 3/4 cup Mint Leaves
  • 2 tbsp Lemon Juice
  • 1/4 cup Cashew Nuts
  • Salt
  • 1 Garlic Clove
  • 1/8 tsp Chili Powder
  • 4 tbsp Water

Rolls

  • 250 g Paneer cut into slender 2 inch long slices
  • 2 tbsp Canola Oil
  • 1 Small Red Bell Pepper thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup Red Onion sliced
  • Black Pepper
  • 10 Frozen Indian Paratha

Instructions

Herb Chutney

  • Blitz all the ingredients until smooth and creamy in a blender.

Marinade

  • Blitz together all the ingredients for the marinade in a blender. Season to taste. Add the paneer, gently turning the pieces to coat. Set aside.

Rolls

  • Heat the 2 tbsp oil in a saucepan, add the bell pepper and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add the paneer and all of its marinade and cook, stirring often, until the liquid has reduced and you can see oil in the pan, 6-7 minutes. Add the onions and cook for another minute. Take off the heat and set aside.
  • Heat a clean non-stick skillet to medium. Remove the frozen parathas from plastic wrapping and place in the hot skillet, one at a time. Cook on medium high heat for 1-2 minutes on each side or until both sides are golden brown, pressing gently with a spatula.

Assembly

  • Work quickly! Slather the herb chutney over the parantha. Spoon a line of the paneer filling down the centre. Wrap them up and serve hot!

Nutrition

Calories: 374kcal | Carbohydrates: 46.1g | Protein: 11.2g | Fat: 16.8g | Saturated Fat: 7.9g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 176mg | Potassium: 177mg | Fiber: 1.4g | Sugar: 3.4g | Calcium: 46mg | Iron: 2mg

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