Onion Upma


Upma is a very popular south Indian dish made of Semolina or soji. It is commonly eaten in many parts of India at breakfast or snack.

The semolina used to make upma is roasted first. Usually, one may roast semolina in large quantity and store it in an air-tight container in the refrigerator. Storing it this way increases the shelf life. You can also use roasted soji for other dishes, like soji halwa, dosa or semolina toasts.

This recipe is a quick one, with a simple tempering of cumin (jeera), mustard (rai) and curry leaves. I have used just onions, but you may add other vegetables such as carrots, beans, peas, tomatoes, cauliflower.

It tastes best when cooked in ghee, but you may also make it in regular oil. You may serve it with plain yoghurt, chutney or achaar. Top it with your favourite namkeen and savour it with a hot cuppa! Rain, cold or hot! This dish is an all-weather-rounder!



1. Semolina (sooji) – 1 cup, Roasted

2. Onion- 1 small, finely chopped

3. Dried Red Chillies – 2, broken

4. Mustard Seeds (Rai) – ½ tsp

5. Cumin Seeds (Jeera)½ tsp 

6. Curry Leaves – 5-6 

7. Lemon Juice – 1 tbsp 

8. Water – 4 cups 

9.  Dried Coconut Powder – 5 tbsp

10. Salt or to taste

11. Ghee – 2 tbsp 

12. Coriander Leaves to garnish



1. Heat the ghee in a saucepan. Add the mustard seeds (rai), cumin seeds (jeera), curry leaves and dried red chillies to the hot ghee and allow them to splutter.

2. Add the chopped onions and fry, stirring continuously. Add salt to taste.

3. Add the water slowly to the mixture and allow it to come to a boil.

4. Add the roasted soji and mix well. Let it to cook for three minutes.Stir often. Cook until all the the water is soaked.

5. Add lemon juice and coriander leaves. Mix it well, remove from heat and serve.

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