Bread Upma (Quick and Easy)

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Bread upma is a quick, easy and tasty Upma variation made with bread cubes, onions, tomatoes, spices and herbs. This savory bread upma comes together in 30 minutes and makes for a quick breakfast, brunch or evening snack.

bread upma served in a white bowl with text layover.

I should have shared this recipe earlier, since this recipe is one of our favorite snack recipes made with bread. I have had some nice memories associated with bread upma.

One of the first recipes I learnt to make was this dish. In fact during my school and college days, I would make this bread upma for myself and my sister.

I have been making this recipe for years now. It is a much loved breakfast or snack at my home. Quick to make when you are short of time.

I suggest to use homemade bread or you can use any bread – Whole wheat Bread, multi grain, Brown Bread or White Bread. But make sure that the bread that you use is soft, so that it soaks up the flavors of the spices and herbs. This makes it very flavorful.

You can use fresh bread slices or even a few days old bread to make this dish. If using fresh bread slices, then no need to slice the edges. For a few days old bread, if the edges have become dense, then slice them.

Sometimes I also make this recipe with Pav (dinner rolls). So if you have leftover pav and don’t know what to do then this recipe is a good choice.

Another similar and quick recipe you can make is this Masala Bread. These are recipes that I make when I want to use leftover bread slices for a quick snack.

Step-by-Step Guide

How to make Bread Upma

1. Chop the bread slices in cubes. Keep aside. Here, I have used brown bread slices.

You can use any kind of soft bread. For health reasons it is best to use whole wheat bread or multi grain bread or ragi bread.

bread cubes in a bowl

2. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a skillet or frying pan. You can use neutral flavored oil like sunflower oil or avocado oil. You can also use peanut oil.

Add 1 teaspoon mustard seeds and let them crackle and pop.

mustard seeds in oil in a pan

3. Then add ½ teaspoon cumin seeds.

cumin seeds in the pan

4. Stir and saute till the cumin seeds also crackle and change their color. Ensure that these two spices are cooked well. They should not be raw or get burnt.

sauteing cumin seeds in oil in the pan

5. Then add ⅓ cup chopped onions.

onions added to pan

6. Stir and being to saute them.

sauteing onions in the pan

7. On a low to medium flame, saute the onions till they turn translucent and are softened.

sauteed onions in the pan.

8. Add 1 green chili (finely chopped – about ½ teaspoon), 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger and 6 to 7 curry leaves, chopped. 

Stir and saute till the raw aroma of ginger goes away. This takes about 10 to 12 seconds.

ginger curry leaves added to pan

9. Then add ½ cup finely chopped tomatoes. About 2 medium tomatoes, finely chopped.

chopped tomatoes added to pan

10. Next add ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder, ¼ teaspoon red chili powder and a pinch of asafoetida (optional). For a more spicy taste in bread upma, you can increase the red chili powder to ½ teaspoon.

TIP: I don’t make this dish very spicy. Feel free to increase or decrease the green chillies and chilli powder in the recipe. Instead of red chilli powder use cayenne pepper or paprika.

spices added to masala mixture in the pan

11. Mix very well.

mixed masala mixture in the pan

12. Add salt as required.

salt added to masala mixture in the pan

13. Stir and saute this onion-tomato-spices mixture till the tomatoes soften and you see oil releasing from the sides.

making bread upma recipe

14. The tomatoes have to be cooked well, otherwise you will feel the rawness in them. There should also be no liquids or moisture in the mixture and it should be slightly dry. Otherwise, the bread cubes become soggy.

onion-tomato-spices mixture in the pan

15. Add the bread cubes.

bread cubes added on top of onion-tomato-spices mixture

16. Mix the bread well with the rest of the mixture.

mixed bread upma mixture in the pan

17. On a low to medium heat, saute the bread cubes for 4 to 5 minutes till they become slightly crisp from the edges. This way there is some crispness in the bread cubes on the edges, along with a soft texture in the center of the cubes.

cooking bread upma in the pan

18. Then add 1 tablespoon of chopped coriander leaves (cilantro). Instead of adding coriander leaves at this step, you can also garnish with them, while serving.

TIP: At this point you can consider adding roasted cashews or roasted peanuts for some added crunch and flavor.

bread upma garnished with coriander leaves in the pan

19. Mix gently.

bread upma in the pan

20. Serve bread upma hot or warm as a breakfast or as a quick snack. Enjoy this dish as is without any sides. While eating you can drizzle some lemon juice to brighten up the flavors.

If making for an evening snack then you can serve tea or coffee with it.

For more tasty bread snacks recipes, you can check this collection of 40 Snacks recipes with Bread.

bread upma served in a white bowl

Helpful Tips

  • Bread: Make this flavorful recipe with any variety of soft bread. The Indian ‘pav’ or dinner rolls is another great option. Both fresh bread or a few days old bread works well in this dish. Better health option would be to make this recipe with whole wheat bread, multi grain bread or ragi bread (finger millet bread).
  • Spicing: Reduce or increase the amount of spices according to your taste buds. When making this dish for small kids skip the green chillies and red chilli powder. Instead of red chilli powder, you can use cayenne pepper or paprika.
  • Scaling: This recipe can be easily halved or doubled or tripled.
  • Nuts: I recommend adding some roasted cashews or roasted peanuts as a garnish or mixed with the bread upma to add some crunch. This also makes the recipe slightly healthier and filling.

More tasty bread snacks recipes

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bread upma recipe

Bread Upma (Quick & Easy)

Bread upma is a quick, easy and tasty upma variation made with bread cubes, onions, tomatoes, spices and herbs. This savory bread upma comes together in 30 minutes and makes for a quick breakfast, brunch or evening snack.
4.81 from 26 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Cuisine South Indian
Course Breakfast, Snacks
Diet Vegan, Vegetarian
Difficulty Level Moderate
Servings 3


  • 3 cups chopped bread cubes or 5 to 6 bread slices – chopped in cubes
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • cup finely chopped onions or 1 medium-sized
  • ½ teaspoon finely chopped green chilies or serrano pepper or 1 green chili
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger or ¾ to 1 inch ginger
  • 6 to 7 curry leaves – chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped tomatoes or 2 medium-sized
  • ¼ teaspoon turmeric powder
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili powder
  • 1 pinch asafoetida (hing) – optional
  • 1 tablespoon chopped coriander leaves (cilantro)
  • salt as required



  • Chop the bread slices in cubes. If the edges of the bread have become dense then slice them. Don't throw them. Instead blitz them in a blender or food processor to make bread crumbs.
  • Finely chop the onions, green chilli, ginger and tomatoes. keep aside.
  • Chop the curry leaves and coriander leaves. Keep aside.

making bread upma

  • Heat oil in a pan. Add mustard seeds and let them crackle and pop.
  • Then add cumin seeds. Stir and saute till the cumin seeds also crackle and change their color.
  • Add chopped onions. Stir. On a low to medium flame, saute the onions till they turn translucent.
  • Add finely chopped green chilies, finely chopped ginger and chopped curry leaves. Stir and saute till the raw aroma of ginger goes away. About 10 to 12 seconds.
  • Then add finely chopped tomatoes.
  • Add turmeric powder, red chili powder and a pinch of asafoetida (optional). For a more spicy taste in bread upma, you can increase the red chili powder.
  • Mix very well. Add salt as required.
  • Stir and saute this onion-tomato-spices mixture till the tomatoes soften and you see oil releasing from the sides. The tomatoes have to be cooked well, otherwise you will feel the rawness in them. 
  • There should also be no liquids or moisture in the mixture and it should be slightly dry. Otherwise the bread cubes become soggy.
  • Add the bread cubes. Mix the bread well with the rest of the mixture.
  • On a low to medium flame, saute the bread cubes for 4 to 5 minutes till they become slightly crisp from the edges. 
  • This way there is some crispness in the bread cubes on the edges, along with a soft texture in the center of the cubes.
  • Then add chopped coriander leaves. 
  • Instead of adding coriander leaves at this step, you can also garnish with them, while serving the bread upma.
  • Mix and serve bread upma hot as a breakfast or as a quick snack. While serving you can drizzle some lemon juice on top.


  • Use you can variety of soft breads. You can also use Pav or dinner rolls. Fresh bread or a few days old bread works well in the recipe. For healthy options, use whole wheat bread, multi grain bread or ragi bread (finger millet bread).
  • The amount of spices can be changed according to your preferences. If making for small kids then skip the green chillies and red chilli powder
  • The recipe can be doubled or tripled.
  • To add some crunch in the dish you can some cashews or roasted peanuts. It will make the dish more healthy and filling also.
  • Instead of red chilli powder, you can use cayenne pepper or paprika.

Nutrition Info (Approximate Values)

Nutrition Facts
Bread Upma (Quick & Easy)
Amount Per Serving
Calories 711 Calories from Fat 162
% Daily Value*
Fat 18g28%
Saturated Fat 3g19%
Sodium 1006mg44%
Potassium 866mg25%
Carbohydrates 107g36%
Fiber 19g79%
Sugar 18g20%
Protein 32g64%
Vitamin A 830IU17%
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) 1mg67%
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin) 1mg59%
Vitamin B3 (Niacin) 35mg175%
Vitamin B6 1mg50%
Vitamin C 56mg68%
Vitamin E 6mg40%
Vitamin K 26µg25%
Calcium 287mg29%
Vitamin B9 (Folate) 375µg94%
Iron 7mg39%
Magnesium 214mg54%
Phosphorus 521mg52%
Zinc 5mg33%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

This bread upma recipe from the blog archives (Nov 2015) has been republished and updated on 28 May 2021.

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Meet Dassana

Welcome to Dassana's Veg Recipes. I share vegetarian recipes from India & around the World. Having been cooking for decades and with a professional background in cooking & baking, I help you to make your cooking journey easier with my tried and tested recipes showcased with step by step photos & plenty of tips & suggestions.

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  1. Tried this today and it was absolutely delicious.nice way to use leftover bread.just garnished it with crushed roasted peanuts.
    Love this site for the sheer variety it offers.not a single day goes by without referrring to entire meal planning has become so easy now.earlier the problem was what to cook daily,now it is what not to(cook).5 stars

    1. thank you winnie. in fact, i also use the recipes from the blog for meal planning. thanks again for this lovely comment. felt good to read it.

  2. I made this and it was enjoyed by all.
    If Dassana Amit wants to call it upman, then it is alright with me. 🙂

  3. Hi mam, if I skip using asafoetida, the bread upma will be taste? (or)instead of using asafoetida what shall i use..

  4. Hi- I want to make bread upma as a starter for the party. Does it taste good only if it is hot or can I make it few hours before the party. Please let me know.

  5. Hi Dassana,
    Today I prepared bread upma and it really turned out to be good…
    Thanks a ton….5 stars

    1. Welcome Soumya. Thanks for sharing positive feedback on bread upma recipe.

  6. This is a really awesome dish.I use homemade sambhar powder in place of red chilli powder.
    Thank you so much.5 stars

  7. Our weekend special breakfast….an easy n quick one…..dis recipe rocks… is perfect for a lazy morning…5 stars

  8. Made this recipe today…. Turned out awesome. Had a great snack with garama garam chaai….

  9. Q thank u so much by showing step by step ….today i hv tried ur lauki koftas n it taste yum….thank.

  10. The efforts taken to show so many recepies with photos is commendable. Have tasted some but never knew how to make them. Now i shall try them. Thank you for sharing these recepies.

  11. hey amit
    if possible,plz make available an another website where we can search the recipes by the name.
    b’coz i am a new commerce in cooking……

    1. preety, recipes from their name can be easily searched. there is a search button on the top, from where the recipes can be searched.

  12. OMG amit
    what i say about ur recipes.all recipes are very very yumm.
    and very important is all are easy to make to following step by step.
    heads off to you…..5 stars

  13. Hello Dasanna, I have been following your blog for a while now. I live in the US at the moment and here at least in the place that I live, am not able to get all the ingredients for cooking all at once. Can you please post recipes with substitute ingredients possibly from the food stores in the West that we can use to cook instead of the proper Indian ingredients. Also can you post a recipe for sambar that can be prepared with just the podi and not use dhal. Also how to prepare idli dosa batter as well. Thanks4 stars

    1. sangeetha, wherever possible i do add substitutes. but will keep this in mind for future recipes. thanks for the suggestion. taken the request for the sambar made with podi. for idli dosa batter, i have shared a post here –

      its a long post, so you can read in your free time. any queries on that, then feel free to ask 🙂

  14. Hi dear….Its one of my kid’s favourite tiffin…..plz post any other recipes which are not sweet more…

  15. Hai dear Dassana am selvi karthik from cuddalore thanks for bread uma and give more variety receipes for my kids Rithish and Iniya.5 stars

  16. Hi Dassana Ji, today I’ve made this recipe. it was very tasty. thanks for your posts n step by step guide. Thanks a lot.3 stars

  17. Thank u aunty …every thing else is pretty tough …i really wanted to make Momma’s birthday …this helped me allot

  18. one more awesome recipe Dassana….tried it n turnd out great…thank you…ur the problem solver truly…

  19. You have amazing recipes on the website simple easy step-by-step thank you so much5 stars

  20. Your blog is definitely a blessing for people living far from their home like me,your simple way of cooking helped me a lot since i am a amateur.Thankyou so much!5 stars

    1. pleased to know this aishwarya 🙂 thankyou for your kind and positive words god bless you.

  21. I really liked your recipes . They are just amazing with a new twist and very tasty also . But i just wanted to request you to post a gujarati dish recipe also .

  22. Dear dasanna

    Your recipes are awesome, well scripted with clear instructions and pictures. Need your clarification on whole wheat bread and white buns. Whenever I bake them, the outside is good but the inside is not dry. It’s wet and dense but soft. What could be the mistake? Please help

    1. aarti, the breads and buns need to be baked more. if the top gets browned quickly, then cover the top with a aluminium foil or butter paper and continue to bake. depending on the type of oven and the temperature inside, the top and outside of breads or cakes get browned quickly and the center remains uncooked. so in this case, covering the bread or cake with a foil helps. this used to happen with me, while baking in my microwave oven in the convection mode. since the heating element was situated on the top. the fan in the oven also accelerates the heating. if you have an OTG, then heat both the top and bottom elements and keep the baking pan in the center rack. this allows for uniform baking.

  23. Your recipes are simply great dassana, I love it and often make them, my family love them too. Keep up the good work.4 stars

  24. Dassana.. you are an amazing woman with just mind blowing and quick solutions to hunger and hunger pangs!! Love you for such perfect recipes…Also thanks a bunch

    1. thankyou so much priyanka for your kind, honest and positive words. you are always welcome 🙂

  25. Your recipes are a life saver in China. Please keep posting simple and tasty recipes. Also, hopefully there will be recipes which do not require too many spice items. Maybe one or two might make them tasty. Any ideas like that?

    Big Fan.

    1. thanks a lot. i will keep this is mind. in fact even with a few spices, the food can taste delicious.

  26. Hi Dassana,
    keep up the good work..really appreciate all your efforts..
    had a doubt…in veg kadai garvy recipe, whipping cream needs to added.
    Is it “loni” ..wat we call in marathi..i hope u got wat i mean..

    1. thanks mads. whipping cream is different from loni. loni is white butter. cream is malai, which has been whipped and made smooth. you can always collect the malai from milk. then whip it till it become smooth and you get cream, which can be added to gravies.

  27. Your recipe reminded me of our hostel days, when this was made very often. Making this for evening snack today. Thanks Dassana!! 🙂5 stars

    1. welcome priya pleased to know this reminded you your hey days 🙂 enjoy and thankyou.

  28. Hi Dassana!

    I simply love your blog 🙂 And its the first place I look for, when trying a new recipe. Your presentation style is very detailed and clear, and I’m sure, many new cooks like me find it very beneficial.
    Can you please add and upward arrow button at the bottom of the screen, so that users can scroll to the top of the page at anytime, because your comments section is usually very long! Which is actually a big compliment to the blogger 😉 but nevertheless, It takes time to scroll to the top, especially when using a mobile phone which doesn’t have a ‘Home’ button to reach the top. It’s just my humble suggestion, something which I feel will make browsing this site an even better experience.

    Keep up the great work, you really are doing a wonderful job!4 stars

    1. thank you wajiha for the feedback as well as the suggestion on adding a ‘top’ button. one more reader had given this suggestion. since i am redesigning the blog again, i will see how to add this button. it has come at the right time. we usually implement readers’ suggestions if its possible to implement them within our technical expertise. i agree with you as i also use a tab while browsing.

  29. Hi ma’am one request i have severe lactose intolerance my request for u is tht can u kindly post recipe of homemade cashew milk so this is beneficial me i cannot even intake carton lactose free milk because of preservatives added in tht. Thank you ma’am and i tried coconut milk pulav it was delicious i also added chopped spinach and tomatoes it was delicious…thnx again

    1. ohh. it must be difficult for you riya. i have not posted cashew milk as its very easy to make. rinse and then soak 1/2 cup cashew for a few hours in some water. drain and then add 1/3 cup water. grind to a smooth paste. if required add more water. then add remaining 2/3 of water and blend again. you can make it thick or thin as per your taste. keep in the fridge. it stays good for 3 to 4 days. however, let me tell you almond milk is better health wise than cashew milk. only thing making almond milk takes more time than cashew milk. you can also soak the cashews in hot water for 30 minutes and then grind.

      and thanks for the feedback on the coconut milk pulav. variations you added are healthy.

      1. Thank you for your help and advice ?but one question can i drink almond milk everyday and can i make almond milk ahead of time and store in fridge for a week for regular intake.

        1. welcome riya. you can have almond milk everyday. but the only problem is it won’t stay for week. you will have to make it twice a week. you can also make soy milk and soy milk can stay for a week. but for making soy milk, please buy non gmo organic soy beans. one place which sells these soy beans in india, is fabindia. they also sell online. soy milk is also like making almond milk. another milk that you can add to gravies, rice dishes and kheers or sweet dishes is coconut milk. coconut milk makes for an excellent base in desserts and also in bakes. then there is rice milk. but i have never made rice milk at home. you can read this –

  30. Hi Dasana,
    I love your recipes, I’ve been using them for a while now just now figured out how to communicate with you (I still don’t know if I’m doing it right, if I’m leaving this message in the right place). You’re very dedicated to sharing delicious, healthy recipes to your followers. Keep it up. I’m a north indian raised in the U.S. who loves south indian food. Couple of questions, when I go to india (Delhi and Mumbai), I have a problem finding anything organic, so where do you buy organic flours from? I am also gluten free, I have been diagnosed with a severe gluten allergy, so in your oats dosa, what flour can I use to substitute the suji? I’m assuming the suji gives it the crispiness, what other flour will give it that crispiness? I can buy quinoa, amaranth, millet as a grain and soak and grind if any of those will work for crispiness. I don’t have a stone grinder here, I have a vitamix, so i’ve never tried your idlis. Unfortunately I have to settle for the packaged idli mix in the indian store here. You have a great blog, you’ve been a life saver I have a teenage son who LOVES delicious indian food. Hope to hear from you soon.

    1. thanks soni. i always reply to the comments and queries i get. so this is the right place 🙂

      organic stuff is easily available in mumbai and delhi. most super stores have an organic section, where you find everything from cereals to flours to lentils. they are also available online.

      in the oats dosa, you can add rice flour instead of the suji. rice flour will make it crispy. you can also add a few tbsp of besan with the rice flour. even besan helps in giving a crisp texture. for grinding amaranth or other millet, you don’t need a stone grinder. just grind them in a mixer-grinder. i do that for amaranth and barnyard millet. i have not ground quinoa, so i don’t know if it can be ground in a mixer-grinder.

      recently on social media, i saw that vitamix grinds the idli batter very well. just check online before you try in the vitamix.

  31. Hello maam. Sorry as I always ask about another recipes in comment box for any recipe. I was scrolling down your blog when my grandma asked me to look for pickles especially amla pickle. She makes pickles at home for the family and was curious to know why her amla pickle gets spoiled after a year or two. When she saw your recipe she said that I should ask you whether her method is right or not. Also she was very happy with your post. She makes pickle by first heating the oil to its smoking point and then frying amlas in it. After it cools down she adds spices and stores it without adding oil again.5 stars

    1. no issue harsimrat. this pickle which i made got over some time back. i made it last year in may 2014 and it got over sometime back in the first week of november 2015. it did not get spoiled. in the method which your granny uses, the amla have to be fried well. could be that after frying, the amla must be releasing water in the pickle and this could be reason the pickle will be getting spoiled. if the amla is fried well, then it won’t release any water or moisture in the pickle. or your granny can add some oil (which has been heated and then cooled) to cover the pickle. this way also the pickle won’t get spoiled

  32. Dear Dasanna, bang on, this Upma is one of my earliest learnt one receipe on those days , came in very handy during my life in London and didn’t wait a minute and with joy made it the way you had given and needless to say thoroughly enjoyed. Thanks for the recipe, mine had urad dhal and channa dhal in tempering and that difference made it a little different . With Divine Grace do give more and more . DK

    1. wow. thats good to know durga ji. i make this often whenever i have bread loaf at home. chana dal and urad dal will give their own taste. since i have been making this upma without any dals, i have also shared it the same way. thank you as always durga ji.

  33. hello mam, quick and simple recipe……i make this recipe by adding other veggies too like capsicum ,carrots etc..but i add few drops of water to bread….if we not add the water will the bread not look and taste dry…?

    1. thanks for the feedback shuchi. the bread does not taste dry. as there is some moisture of the tomatoes that helps. i did make a couple of times with water too, but i felt the bread becomes soggy. so i don’t add water. it also depends on the freshness of the bread. just baked or fresh bread won’t be dry. even a day old bread won’t be dry. but if the bread is some days old, then some water needs to be added to make the bread moist.

      1. Hi!! I hv been following your blog since a long tym nw.. I jst want to thank you for sharing ol d wonderful recipes..:)) stay blessed..5 stars