This dessert is low in fat and high in protein, making it the ideal combination of health and taste. This meal originated in Oriya cuisine and was accidentally invented in a bakery. It is now known as “Chenna Poda” and is a popular recipe all over the world.

In English, the word “chenna poda” means “grilled cheese.” Lord Jagannath’s favorite sweet, according to legend, is chhena poda. During festivals like Diwali or Durga Puja, chenna poda is also prepared.

The dish is one of the greatest calcium sources because it provides 8% of the daily required dose. In addition, 100 grams of cottage cheese has 83 grams of protein. Cottage cheese is high in vitamin D and is good for your blood sugar.

Chenna Poda in a white square-shaped bowl

 Chenna Poda is served in a white square bowl.


Chenna Poda is an Odia delicacy that originated in the Odia town of Nayagarh in the first half of the twentieth century. It is now considered one of the iconic delicacies of Odia cuisine. Chhena Poda, which translates as “roasted cheese” in Odia, is prepared with well-kneaded, fresh cottage cheese and sugar that is cooked for several hours before turning brown and caramelize. Sudarshana Sahoo, the owner of a confectionery, is said to have added sugar and seasonings to leftover cottage cheese and baked it in a coal oven that was still hot from the previous usage. The next day, he discovered a delectable dish that he had never had before.

Bengali sweets’ fundamental framework and building block is chenna. It’s that one crucial component that may make or ruin your homemade confections. An excellent Chenna will always provide soft, moist, and melt-in-your-mouth Bengali sweets. Chenna produced incorrectly, on the other hand, may result in chewy, rubbery sweets that may come apart and deflate.

So, with a few simple steps, master the appropriate method and utilize the right ingredients to make the perfect crumbly, moist Chenna recipe at home. You can also serve the chenna plain by sweetening it with some cane sugar. It’s a satisfying, nutritious, and hearty fast snack for kids and adults alike.

Three pieces of Chenna Poda

Chenna Poda pieces placed on a table

Chenna is a soft, luscious, crumbly curdled milk solid. It’s prepared by curdling milk with an acidic substance such as lemon or lime juice or vinegar, then draining the extra whey while maintaining just enough moisture to keep the cheese moist. Bypassing the curdled milk solids (chenna) through a muslin cloth or fine sieve, the surplus whey is removed. Unlike paneer, Chenna is never pressed. The perfect amount of whey maintained in the chenna makes it ultimate, one-of-a-kind, and extremely soft.

What is the best way to make Chenna Poda?

  • In a large mixing bowl, crumble 250 grams of paneer.
  • Crumble and mash gently to provide a consistent texture.
  • 2 tbsp of rava and 12 cups of sugar or jaggery (fine semolina).
  • Mix thoroughly until the sugar has completely melted.
  • Prepare a nice cake batter consistency by adding water as needed.
  • 1 teaspoon ghee, almonds, cashews, raisins, and cardamom powder are added to the mixture.
  • Into the mold, pour the batter, and tap it twice.
  • Cover and cook for 25 minutes on medium heat, or preheat and bake for 15 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius in the oven.
  • Chenna Poda can be served immediately or kept refrigerated for up to a week in an airtight container.

Chenna poda on a whole plate and a bowl of cream

Two plates of Chenna Poda

The following is the distinction between Paneer and Chenna:

  1. Paneer is made by entirely draining the whey from chenna or curdled milk. And you can achieve this by pressing the chenna for at least 30 minutes with a heavyweight. It will then resemble a block (imagine a Tofu block). Chenna, on the other hand, is made by curdling milk and then straining it through a fine sieve or muslin cloth to eliminate excess whey. Unlike Paneer, Chenna should never be pressed. This will keep the chenna wet by retaining part of the whey.
  1. Chenna is more sensitive, soft, and juicy than paneer.
  1. Paneer can be used in traditional Indian dishes such as curries and parathas. You may create Bengali sweets at home using the chena recipe.


Making a Chenna Poda, however, is not as simple as it appears. It was traditionally wrapped in the leaves of the sal tree and baked in a coal oven because baking ovens had not yet been invented. As a result, the entire process was extremely time-consuming, requiring about four hours to complete. The Chhena Poda’s slow-cooking procedure gives it a creamy soft center, with just enough nuttiness and bitterness on the outside to cut through the sweetness. It’s a combination between a baked rosogulla and a cheesecake, and it’s the go-to dessert for fusion cuisine newbies.



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