Arisi Upma Recipe | How To Make Rice Upma

It was when Joie, Arfi & Andrea mentioned about their love for Indian cooking in my blog, I realized that all my posts are someway incomplete for non-Indian cooks. Apologies for that!!! From now on, I will try my best to post easy-to-understand and follow recipes. I will definitely suggest the replacement ingredients for the typically Indian ones. Thanks for ringing a bell in my head! (smiles).

From Indians to Chinese to Italians to Spanish, everyone eats rice in one form or the other. But the rice variety varies from region to region. Rice is an international staple food but I guess we can’t make Indian Briyani with Jasmine rice or cooking a Paella with hand pound Indian rice would be a disaster. So each regional rice variety has to be used to get the perfect taste.

The emanating aroma of dry red chillies and curry leaves wonderfully synchronizes with perfectly cooked fluffy rice. I love this dish to bits. An amazing feel is created till the last snow-white flavoured rice grain makes its way to your stomach. Here is my arisi upma recipe. I hope you enjoy it!

Arisi Upma

In Tamil, Arisi means rice and upma is a dish with rice/wheat/vermicelli seasoned with homegrown spices. From the information I gathered from my aunts and mom, I think this dish is originally from Tamil Nadu (TN) and this is a very common breakfast dish in the interiors parts of TN. It is made from simple rice and even more simpler spices. Cooking a vegetarian food is lot more straightforward and less time consuming. I truly agree to this notion with regard to this dish. This gorgeous dish provides a lot of pleasure in every munch – a perfect comfort food!!!
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Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: South Indian
Keyword: Arisi Upma
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2
Author: Advika Menon


  • 1 cup raw Indian rice ( no Basmati)
  • 2 tsp toor dhal
  • 2 tsp black pepper balls
  • 2 dry red chillies
  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1 tsp urad dhal
  • 3 cups water
  • 10-12 curry leaves
  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut (fresh/dessicated)
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil/rice bran oil
  • Salt to taste


  • Clean the rice with running cold water and spread them over the kitchen towels to dry. Once partially dried, pound them into course powdered form in a mixie. (Don’t grind them into a paste or fine powder. It should have a broken rice look).
  • Grind the toor dhal and black pepper balls into coarse powder like form in mixie or mortar/pestle.
  • Heat a heavy bottom pan with oil. Temper the dry red chillies, mustard,urad dhal and curry leaves. Cook for about a min or 2. Add 3 cups of water and bring them to boil.
  • Now add the grated coconut, coarse rice, pound toor dhal & pepper balls and salt. Mix them thoroughly and set the pan. Cook for 3 whistles and your rice upma is ready to serve. (Make sure you have fixed the gasket and located your whistle from the rack 🙂
  • Serve hot with milagai podi/sambhar/chutney


Note: Generally my mother rolls them into small balls and serves it.

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