Easy breakfast recipes | Healthy breakfast idea | Upma recipe | Bombay Rava Upma | Quick breakfast with Bengal Gram | South Indian breakfast | Vegetarian breakfast | Nutritious breakfast | Simple breakfast dishes | Indian semolina recipe


**Upma Recipe: A Wholesome South Indian Breakfast Delight**

  **Preparation Time**: 15 minutes 

**Cooking Time**: 20 minutes 

**Total Time**: 35 minutes 

**Servings**: 4


Upma holds a cherished place in South Indian cuisine as a hearty breakfast dish that combines semolina (Bombay Rava or Sooji) with a medley of vegetables and aromatic spices. Known for its simplicity and nourishing qualities, Upma is not just a meal but a culinary experience that celebrates the rich flavors and textures of South India. Whether enjoyed steaming hot for breakfast or as a comforting snack, Upma promises to satisfy both the palate and the soul.

 **Importance of Ingredients**:

Each ingredient in Upma contributes to its unique flavor profile and nutritional benefits. Here's a brief overview:

 - **Bombay Rava (Sooji)**: Provides a creamy texture and acts as the base ingredient, absorbing flavors and adding bulk to the dish.

- **Vegetables (Onion, Tomato, Carrot, Green Chillies)**: Offer vitamins, minerals, and fiber, enhancing the nutritional value and adding vibrant colors and textures.

- **Groundnuts and Chana Dal (Bengal Gram)**: Add crunchiness and protein, balancing the dish with their nutty flavors.

- **Mustard Seeds and Curry Leaves**: Provide essential aromatics and flavors that characterize South Indian cuisine.

- **Ghee**: Adds richness and depth of flavor, enhancing the overall taste and aroma of the Upma.

 **Occasions and Who Can Enjoy It**:

Upma is a versatile dish suitable for various occasions:

- **Breakfast**: Perfect for starting the day with a wholesome and nutritious meal.

- **Brunch**: Ideal for casual gatherings or lazy weekend mornings.

- **Light Lunch**: Pair with a salad or yogurt for a satisfying midday meal.

- **Snack**: Enjoy as a quick and filling snack between meals.

 Upma appeals to a wide audience, including:

- **Vegetarians and Vegans**: Can enjoy Upma as it is plant-based and can be customized to exclude ghee or substitute with oil.

- **Children**: Provides essential nutrients in a palatable form, appealing to young taste buds.

- **Health-conscious Individuals**: Offers a balanced combination of carbohydrates, proteins, and vegetables, supporting a healthy diet.

- **Anyone Craving Comfort Food**: Satisfies cravings for warm, comforting dishes with a hint of spice and flavor.

 **Benefits and Uses of Having This Recipe**:

- **Nutritious Breakfast Option**: Upma is packed with vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber from vegetables and semolina, providing sustained energy throughout the morning.

- **Quick and Easy to Prepare**: Requires minimal preparation and cooking time, making it an ideal choice for busy mornings or when you need a fast meal.

- **Customizable**: Easily adaptable to personal preferences by adjusting spices, vegetables, and garnishes.

- **Budget-friendly**: Uses basic pantry staples and seasonal vegetables, making it a cost-effective meal option.

- **Versatile**: Can be served plain or with accompaniments like coconut chutney, pickle, or yogurt, catering to different tastes and preferences.


  • 50g Groundnuts
  • 1 tablespoon Chana Dal (Bengal Gram)
  • 2 Green Chillies, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Mustard Seeds
  • 1 Onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tomato, diced
  • 1 Carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon Ghee (clarified butter)
  • 2-3 tablespoons Oil
  • 1 cup (250g) Bombay Rava (Sooji)
  • 2-3 cups Water
  • Few Curry Leaves
  • Fresh Coriander Leaves, chopped
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 tablespoon Lemon Juice (Optional)

**Detailed Cooking Instructions**:

1. **Preparation of Ingredients**:

   - Rinse and prepare all vegetables. Chop the onion finely, dice the tomato, slice the carrot thinly, and chop the green chillies. Keep curry leaves and coriander leaves ready for garnish.

2. **Toasting Groundnuts and Chana Dal**:

   - Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a pan over medium heat. Add groundnuts and chana dal, and fry until golden brown and aromatic, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. Remove from pan and set aside.

3. **Tempering with Mustard Seeds**:

   - In the same pan, add mustard seeds. Allow them to splutter, releasing their flavor into the oil. This step is crucial for enhancing the aromatic base of the Upma.

4. **Sautéing Vegetables**:

   - Add chopped onion, green chillies, diced tomato, and sliced carrot to the pan. Season with salt to taste. Sauté until vegetables soften and onions turn translucent, absorbing the flavors of the mustard seeds and oil.

5. **Adding Water and Semolina**:

   - Pour 2-3 cups of water into the pan, depending on the desired consistency (more water for softer Upma). Bring the mixture to a gentle boil.

6. **Incorporating Bombay Rava (Sooji)**:

   - Gradually sprinkle Bombay Rava (Sooji) into the boiling water, stirring continuously to prevent lumps from forming. Stir vigorously to ensure the semolina blends evenly with the vegetables and water.

7. **Simmering and Final Seasoning**:

   - Reduce heat to low and let the mixture simmer for 3-5 minutes, allowing the semolina to absorb the flavors and cook thoroughly. Add curry leaves and chopped coriander leaves, stirring them into the Upma for added freshness and aroma.

8. **Adding Ghee and Optional Lemon Juice**:

   - Before turning off the heat, add a tablespoon of ghee to the Upma, stirring it in to enrich the flavors and add a buttery texture. For a tangy twist, optionally squeeze fresh lemon juice over the Upma just before serving.

9. **Final Touch and Serving**:

   - Once all the ingredients are thoroughly combined and cooked to perfection, turn off the stove. Garnish the Upma with additional fresh coriander leaves for a vibrant presentation. Serve the hot and flavorful Upma immediately, accompanied by a side of coconut chutney or pickle for a complete South Indian breakfast experience.

 10. **Storage**:

   - Upma is best enjoyed fresh and hot. However, leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. Reheat gently on the stove or microwave, adding a splash of water to restore moisture.

 **Health Benefits and Uses**:

- **Rich in Nutrients**: Provides essential vitamins (like Vitamin C from tomatoes), minerals (from vegetables and semolina), and dietary fiber, promoting overall health and well-being.

- **Balanced Meal Option**: Combines carbohydrates (from semolina), proteins (from dal and groundnuts), and fats (from ghee), offering sustained energy and satiety.

- **Digestive Health**: Fiber-rich ingredients support digestive function and regulate bowel movements.

- **Weight Management**: Low in calories and high in fiber, making it a filling yet healthy choice for those watching their weight.

**Cooking Tips and Variations**:

- **Consistency Control**: Adjust the amount of water to achieve your preferred Upma texture—more water for softer Upma and less for a firmer texture.

- **Spice Level**: Customize the dish by varying the number of green chillies or adding red chilli powder for extra heat.

- **Vegetable Variations**: Experiment with different vegetables such as peas, bell peppers, or even spinach to add color and nutritional variety.

- **Garnishing**: Besides coriander leaves, garnish with roasted cashews or grated coconut for added texture and flavor.

 **Nutritional Information (per serving)**:

- **Calories**: Approximately 300 kcal

- **Protein**: 8g

- **Carbohydrates**: 45g

- **Fat**: 10g

- **Fiber**: 5g

 **Presentation and Serving**:

- Serve Upma hot, garnished with fresh coriander leaves and a wedge of lemon on the side for optional tanginess.

- Pair with coconut chutney, pickle, or plain yogurt to complement the flavors of Upma.

- Serve in traditional South Indian stainless steel plates or bowls for an authentic dining experience.


Upma epitomizes the essence of South Indian cuisine—simple yet flavorful, nutritious yet comforting. Its versatility makes it suitable for breakfast, brunch, or even a light lunch. By mastering this recipe, you not only indulge in a delicious meal but also celebrate the culinary heritage of South India. Whether you're a vegetarian, health-conscious individual, or simply someone who appreciates good food, Upma offers a delightful journey of taste and satisfaction. Enjoy the warmth and richness of Upma as you savor each bite, knowing that you've embraced a dish that nourishes both body and soul.