Using Chhena in Bengali & Indian Cuisines Explained

Chhena or Chhana is a coagulated milk which is made to form different forms of sweets or Bengali delicacies like Ras Malai, Rasgulla, Sandesh, Chhanar Jilipi etc.

It is considered as a main item to form the sweets and there are some of the recipes which are also delicious. The milk coagulation is being done with the help of lime or vinegar or citric acid.

These agents are being used to form the milk coagulation. Chhana is actually much softer than paneer. When you are preparing chhana then you must be careful as it needs to be perfect to make other recipes.

Chhena in Bengali & Indian Cuisines

Uses of Chhena in Bengali & Indian Cuisines

Bengalis are considered as the inventors of sweets. And it all started with Chhana or chhena. The use of chhana and making it with perfection is something that makes the sweets like Rasgulla, Chum Chum, Sandesh and more perfect.

The texture of the sweets gets more accurate and wonderful with the good quality of Chhana. So let us first check out the steps to make Chhana then we will check out the recipes that can be made with it. So, let’s check how to prepare a perfect chhana.

First, take milk and boil it. Then when it comes to boil add lemon juice or vinegar to the boiling milk. You need to stir the milk till you see the greenish water and the chhana is getting separated – “chhana kata”.

Now you can simply take a muslin cloth and separate the chhana and greenish water. You can hang the cloth for sometime or overnight so that the water gets fully discarded from it. Now you can get pure Chhana.

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Green Sandesh

This is a beautiful recipe which is made with Chhana and green peas with grated ginger. This is having a different taste of its own but you will like it as a good snack.

Kachagolla Sandesh

This is a perfect sweet which is made with pure cottage cheese or Chhana. You need to knead and repeat the chhana so that it becomes perfect in texture.

Betel Sandesh

This is made with betel, elaichi powder, sugar and ghee with fine texture chhana.

Nolen Gurer Sandesh

This is a perfect sweet which is made with pure Chhana and nolen gur. You need to knead and repeat the chhana so that it becomes perfect in texture.

Spinach Ladoo

When chhana is mixed with spinach to form a wonderful delicacy which is considered as one of the unique sweets.

Plum & Jaggery Sandesh

Chhana with plum and jaggery is mixed together to form this Sandesh.


Small balls of chhana are being prepared and then it is being added to milk which is boiled to thicken the consistency.


Small balls of chhana are being prepared and fried then it is added to sugar syrup.


This is a perfect sweet which is made with pure cottage cheese or Chhana. You need to knead and repeat the chhana so that it becomes perfect in texture.

Chhanar Payesh

Pure cottage cheese or chhana is being blended with various dry fruits, sugar and a little bit of milk. You can add kesar for flavouring.


Phoolkopi, Alu Diye Chhanar Dalna

Chhana is prepared as a small dumpling and fried and kept separate. Then a simple curry of fulkopi and potato is being made with tomatoes and some usual spices. Then after preparing the gravy add some small dumplings of chhana.

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Chhanar Potol

This is like a stuffed potol where the stuffing is made with chhana and some aromatic spices. Then it is fried and inserted within a fine gravy.

Chhanar Kofta/Kalia

This is mainly made with cottage cheese or chhana which is fried to form small cakes or balls made with chhana, salt, ginger & chopped green chilis.

Then a gravy using kismis, nuts, poppy seeds, tomatoes, ginger & garlic paste, turmeric, coriander, chili powder and little sugar. The chhana balls or cakes are added to the gravy and garnished with chopped coriander.

Chhana’r Pulao

This is a nice rice recipe which is made with small chhana balls. You need good basmati rice which is cooked with aromatic spices along with small pieces of paneer or Chhana added to it so that it becomes much more perfect and wonderful.

Chhana Bhapa/Paturi

Here plain Chhana with coconut paste with salt, green chilies, poppyseed paste, turmeric powder and mustard paste is added together. Then it is steamed to form a gravy like curry which is wonderful in taste. You can serve it with rice or roti.

Mouri Chhana

This is a unique recipe which is being prepared with a nice gravy made with fennel and milk. The tempering is being done with green chilis and fennel seeds. Milk and green peas are added to it with a little bit of garnishing.

Chenna Bhurji

This is a beautiful dish which you can also try with Paneer. The sliced onions with chopped tomatoes will be doing the honor. The scrambled cottage cheese is mixed with some usual aromatic spices to make it a wonderful dish.

Narkel Shorshe Chhana

Cottage cheese is mixed with shorshe (mustard) paste with green chilis mixed to form a spicy yet a creamy dish which can be a good side dish with hot rice.

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The coconut with mustard paste is usually a good appetizer as it changes the taste of the regular taste of your food style.

What Can be Made from Chhena?

You can make different types of sweets like Kalakandh, Sandesh, Payesh, Rasgulla, Chanar jilipi from Chhana and various types of curries like chana r dalna, kofta, kalia and more.

How Do You Cook Chhena?

Chhena is a coagulation of milk with the help of lemon juice and calcium lactate. A solid and dry part of the whole milk is produced.

It tastes sweet and a little bit sour. You can take these cottage cheese and prepare many sweet dishes and apart from that you can also prepare curries too.

Is Chhena the Same as Paneer?

Chhena and paneer are almost the same, it’s just that chhana is much more loosely kneaded and paneer is much firmer and more sold.

You can check out both and can understand the difference from their texture.

Questions & Answers:

How Does Chhena Taste?

Chhena tastes sweet and mildly acidic.

What is the Difference Between Khoya and Chhana?

Khoya is the creamy part of milk which is formed by losing all the moisture from the milk. On the other hand, chhena is the coagulated milk which is made by lemon juice or calcium lactate.

What is Chhana Called in Different Languages?

Chhana is Bengali word and it is called Chhena in Hindi.

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