Paneer vs Tofu – Which is Healthier?

Paneer and Tofu are almost identical looking, but differ in nutrition and mineral content. There is also a slight difference in colour, hence spotting them is not at all difficult. But which one should athletes & bodybuilders choose is a question whose answer nobody has. Well, we start from the beginning and help you decide.


PaneerCurdled cow or buffalo milk, which obviously has all the milk benefits. This one is slightly whitish in colour and sometimes the added dairy fat brings creaminess in taste. It can contain from 275-300 calories, which is significantly higher than its counterpart. Cholesterol can be as high as 75 for a 100 gram slab.


TofuSpelled as Douphu, it is a food of Chinese origin, made by coagulating the soy milk, and pressing the curdled liquid into blocks. Thus, it has all the benefits Soy (or Soyabean) brings. Since the process is quite complex, Tofu has more protein than paneer. The best part is that Cholesterol is almost negligible, even zero in some cases.

Among other nutrients, paneer also packs in Potassium, Calcium & Magnesium.

Milk usually has some fats and the resulting paneer is loaded with fats, which, of course is absent in Tofu. Otherwise, both products are identical and can be used any way you wish while cooking.

Tips for Choosing Either Paneer or Tofu

Since Paneer is available easily & locally, people are used to the taste. Tofu, on the other hand has made its appearance recently and not many people have tasted it yet. It is better to buy the product and eat for a few days and only then try to differentiate about its quality, effectiveness and benefits.

  1. Tofu is best for Vegans as it is a plant-based product. Bodybuilders & athletes who are milk intolerant should go for Tofu as it provides almost similar benefits that paneer brings.
  2. Tofu packs almost double protein compared to paneer and, hence, bodybuilders & athletes stand to gain more from it. We recommend you to alter between paneer and tofu so that you get the best of both worlds, benefiting your body.
  3. If looking for more energy then paneer suits you best because the calories are almost double compared to tofu.
  4. Paneer is bland in taste compared to tofu which has a peculiar taste of its own. However, this is a personal choice but we thought it apt to put this point here.
  5. Both are equally healthy and beneficial and suitable for munching on after an hour of attending the gym session.
  6. For those focusing on weight loss, tofu is a better option as it gives double protein that helps in prolonging your satiety and that too, with almost half the calories. This one quality sets it apart from paneer.
  7. Both can be grilled and eaten with green salad and they taste great.
  8. Newcomers can try tofu in soups, salads and mixed with veggies for a few days and compare their differences. This will help them decide which one is better for their body.

Tofu has appeared recently in supermarkets whereas paneer was always available locally. The paneer is made from cow or buffalo milk, whereas tofu comes from Soy milk. Their nutrition content is almost similar except for the protein content and a few minerals like potassium, calcium and magnesium. Both are suitable for post-gym sessions and have proven to be equally beneficial. Calorie wise paneer is better which suits weight lifters more whereas for weight loss enthusiasts, tofu seems much ahead. The less calories and double protein seem to be a boon for them. Whatever be the field, tofu and paneer are healthy choices.

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