Idli Upma

Idli Upma is a very simple yet delicious breakfast or snack item that can be made with left over idlis. It is one of the easiest upma recipes that you can whip in a jiffy. There are many times when there would be leftover idlis with no takers for the same in many households. Our home is no different from that and I try ways and means to make the boring idlis enticing and make sure that the left overs are recycled and made into something appealing and delicious.

Idli Upma

This recipe is one such recipe, which is my husband’s favorite. Surprisingly, he loves Idli Upma more than plain idlis and everytime idlis are made for breakfast or dinner, I plan for the Idli Upma or Idli Seeralam for the evening snacks or for next day’s breakfast. While making this upma, I use coconut oil for the tempering as it imparts a very nice flavor and along with the crunchiness from onions and curry leaves, spiciness from the chillies, this Upma makes a perfect breakfast or evening snack.


Left over idlis – 5
Onion – 1 medium sized
Curry leaves – 2 sprigs
Green chilli – 2
Coriander leaves – few
Turmeric powder – ¼ tsp
Salt to taste

To temper
Coconut oil – 2 tsps
Mustard seeds – ¾ tsp
Urad dal – ½ tsp
Chana dal – ¼ tsp
Hing or asafoetida – ¼ tsp


Preparation time – 10 mins
Cooking time – 10 mins
Total time – 20 mins
Serves 2

  1. Crumble the left over idlis using your hands.
  2. Chop onions, green chillies and coriander leaves.
  3. Heat oil in a pan, add mustard seeds to it and let them crackle. Add urad and chana dals followed by hing. Saute till the dals turn golden brown.
  4. Add the chopped onions, green chillies and curry leaves. Cook until onions turn translucent. Add turmeric powder and salt to taste. Mix well and cook for a minute.
  5. Add the crumbled idlis and toss well. Cover and cook for 2-3 mins. Finally, add the coriander leaves and serve hot.

Idli Upma is very tasty by itself. However, you can serve it accompanied with any Chutney or Sambar.

Idli Upma


  1. Fresh idlis may not be suitable for this recipe. You can leave the idlis for 3-4 hrs and then use it. You can refrigerate the left over idlis overnight or for 2-3 hrs and then crumble it, which gives a nice crumble
  2. You can use red chillies instead of green chillies.
  3. I used coconut oil; any regular cooking oil can be used for the tempering.