Upma Recipe, How to make Upma Recipe | South Indian Upma Recipe

upma recipe

Upma is a traditional south indian breakfast dish made from semolina or suji. Upma is served with coconut chutney, lime slices or lime pickle. It can also be had plain.

One easily gets upma in all the restaurants in South India including Maharashtra. In fact upma would be a regular breakfast or evening snack in my growing up days. Upma is not only delicious but also a healthy breakfast option.

Making upma does not take much time and can be done in 15-20 minutes, if you have the roasted semolina ready. I always roast semolina and then keep in an air-tight container. This way the semolina stays good for a longer time and does not become mouldy or spoilt. Also the time spent is less when when you make upma or sheera.

I just loved the steaming hot upma served with some hot cuppa of chai or filter coffee. My comfort breakfast any day.

south indian upma recipe

This version of south indian upma is how I make it at home and adapted from my mom’s recipe.

You can also make Upma in Microwave oven too. Making Upma in Microwave oven takes a little less time than making the upma in the traditional way. Mostly, i use this recipe to make upma and very rarely use microwave method to make upma. As there are reports in internet that microwave cooking is not good for health.

If you are looking for more Breakfast Recipes then do check vermicelli upma, poori bhajirava dosa, rava idli and idli recipe.

Upma Recipe details below:

4.9 from 15 reviews
Upma Recipe: How to make South Indian Upma Recipe
upma - savory south indian breakfast dish made with semolina
RECIPE TYPE: breakfast, brunch
CUISINE: indian
INGREDIENTS (measuring cup used, 1 cup = 250 ml)
  • 1 cup roasted semolina (sooji, rava)
  • 1 medium sized onion, chopped finely
  • 1 green chilly, chopped
  • 1 tbsp chana dal/spilt and skinned bengal gram
  • ½ tbsp urad dal/spilt and skinned
  • ½ inch ginger grated or chopped finely
  • 2 to 21/4 cups water
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 sprig of curry leaves
  • 7-8 cashewnuts
  • 2 tsp sugar (optional)
  • 2 tbsp oil or ghee
  • salt as required
  1. In a pan, heat oil or ghee.
  2. Add mustard seeds.
  3. When you hear the crackling sound of mustard seeds, it means they are getting fried.
  4. Now add the cumin along with chana dal and urad dal.
  5. Fry till they start to brown a little.
  6. Add cashews and by the time, the cashews get browned the dals would also get browned..
  7. now add onions and fry till they become transparent.
  8. now add the green chilly, ginger, curry leaves.
  9. Fry for a minute.
  10. Now add water to this mixture and let it come to a boil.
  11. Add salt and sugar. If you want a more sweeter taste, you can add more sugar. When the water comes to a rolling boiling, lower the flame and add the roasted semolina to it.
  12. Keep on stirring while you add the semolina.
  13. The semolina should be added not once but in 3-4 batches with a spoon.
  14. If you add it at once, lumps will be formed.
  15. Keep on stirring.
  16. The semolina will absorb water and swell and begin to cook.
  17. If the mixture looks dry, then add some more water.
  18. Reduce the flame and simmer the upma for 2-3 minutes.
  19. Keep stirring so that the upma does not stick to the pan.
  20. Garnish upma with coriander/cilantro leaves.
  21. Serve upma hot with slices of lime or coconut chutney or lime pickle.

{ 73 Responses }

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. Lin says

    ive been collecting all the ingredients from here and there, i just need to find the lentils for the dals. I know its silly of me, i got the semolina but i dont know how to roast it…. can u pls tell me? :) i saw some ways on youtube but i prefer your way.

    • says

      heat up a shallow pan and just add the semolina. on a low flame continuously stirring, dry roast the semolina till the grains become fragrant. you will see a slight change in color too, but don’t make them brown. then remove them on a plate carefully. since if they spread, it becomes kind of difficult to clean up.

  2. Sama says

    i love this site. the best thing about is the step by step process of cooking through the PICTURES. thank-you. hope you post more pictures for these recipes, some of them don’t have it. It becomes so much easier to follow it visually. thanks

    • says

      welcome sama and thanks for sharing your suggestion. yes, some recipes don’t have step by step photos. we are slowly updating those posts with step by step photos.

  3. Sofiya padela says

    Wonderful 5 stars recipe! I made it today and loved it. I always try making Upma, but somehow doesn’t get taste right. I loved it today, when is made it with your recipe. Thanks a lot.

  4. Geetanjali says

    Tried this recipe for my mom today. She is getting on in her years and has blood sugar. She can’t eat a lot of things she once used to enjoy. This worked beautifully even without the sugar. A big hug and thanks from my mom and me :)

  5. says

    I tried it today with pretty much all the ingredients save urad dhal and cashews, I didn’t have them. This turned out really delicious. Thanks for this great recipe! I felt like a child again eating it.

  6. Naznin Azeez says

    I made this just now!. I loved it and more than that my husband absolutely loved it. Called it special :). Thank you so much for posting this online. Happy new year!

  7. Baldwin says

    I live in Austria , and I do not knwo what •1 tbsp chana dal/spilt and skinned bengal gram
    •½ tbsp urad dal/spilt and skinned
    is , Im originally from Banglore and miss the sounth indian food as my wife is Austrian,
    what si urad dal and skinned bengal gram is there an english name for it.

    • says

      chana dal is called as bengal gram in english. these lentils are made from black chickpeas.
      urad dal are called as black lentils or white lentils. they are shaped like mung beans except that the husk is black in color and the lentils are in white color. i referred wiki and the other name for it is vigna mungo.

  8. Jamilah says

    Thanx for this wonderfully delicious and easy to make recipe. I followed Thangavel’s suggestion of adding semolina and it worked very well. Not much stirring needed and no lumps!

  9. Sanjay Pohnekar says

    Very simple and tasty recipe. I tried it and it taste lovely. Pl send me sambhar recipe and chatny recipe.

  10. shalu says

    My mom used to toss in a few other veggies to sneak in additional nutrition… Usually in the form of a hand full of finely chopped carrots at the same time as onions. No sugar needed then as the carrots add a sweetness to the recipe :). I’ll need to try your version with my mom’s tips in mind!!

    • says

      carrots and peas if added do add a sweetness of their own. my folks at home do not like carrots in upma…peas are still ok. so i don’t add carrots to upma.

  11. says

    Just made this dish for the first time and followed your recipe. I am new with Indian food. I was very happy with the result and my husband really loved it. Thank you!

  12. Thangavel says

    When water gets boiled, the flame should be brought under simmering. The semolina should be sprinkled by hand round the kadai quickly in the boiling water. The Rava need not be stirred with spoon, simultaneously. Immediately after adding rava, the kadai should be covered with air tight lid, and under this circumstances, cook under simmering for 4–6 minutes depending upon the quantity. After the time period, open the lid. We can see the rava in uniformly cooked condition. Now it can be mixed with spoon for few seconds if needed add little ghee. Sprinkle coriander leaves and mint. The upma is ready for serve.

  13. pankaj says

    Cooked it the first time simply by reading it and boy, my cook was suprised . I think its one of the most amazing upma that I have eaten.

  14. Khushboo says

    hi, my husband is upma fan, but in 5 years first time he liked upma made by me.
    All thanks to u.

  15. says

    I am an upma fan but at one time got bored of the rava upma. So happened to try cornmeal upma recipe and that turned out to be quite a success!

  16. Emelia says

    I really like it when folks come together and
    share ideas. Great website, continue the
    good work!

  17. Dee Jadhav says

    Hi I just made this for breakfast for my husband and he loved it! Him being a Marathi and I a Gujarati, I never really use to eat upma etc. beautiful and simple to follow!