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Villupuram Upma

 Published 2023-Aug-16   Updated 2023-Aug-16

- Submitted by Dahlia

(விழுப்புரம் உப்புமா, Villupuram Rava Upma)

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Upma is a popular breakfast dish made from rava throughout India.  It is made with plain rava in South India and with vegetables in North India. Today I am going to share a very special variation of Upma made in Viluppuram, a town in Tamil Nadu. 

My home town is Nagercoil and I’ve been traveling in Kanyakumari Express between Chennai Egmore and Nagercoil for the last 10 years regularly. As soon as the train reaches Villupuram station around 8.10 p.m., I used to see many people waiting and rushing to buy the Villupuram Upma.

This Villupuram Upma is served in a small shop at this station every day near the AC coaches. The upma served is piping hot from a hot pack. The vendor scoops a ladle full and serves in a disposable bowl. A delicious coconut chutney is poured on top of the upma. 

This upma is cooked soft and has a creamy texture. It tastes heavenly especially during those train travels. I’ve tried to recreate th Villupuram Upma and chutney at home.

Recipe for Villupuram Upma

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 4


For Upma

  • Rava – 1 cup
  • Oil – 1 tbsp
  • Ghee – 1 tbsp
  • Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  • Channa Dal – 2 tsp
  • Asafoetida -1/4 tsp
  • Curry Leaves – 1 sprig
  • Water – 5 cups
  • Salt - to taste

For Chutney

  • Coconut – ½ cup
  • Pottu Kadalai – 1 tbsp
  • Dry Red Chilies – 5
  • Garlic – 1 clove
  • Giner – ¼” piece
  • Salt – to taste
  • Water – 1 cup
  • Coconut Oil – 1 tbsp
  • Mustard Seeds – ½ tsp
  • Curry Leaves – 1 sprig


For Upma

  1. Heat ghee in a heavy bottomed kadai. Add the rava and roast over medium low heat until it turns slightly golden and a nutty aroma comes out. Remove it onto a plate.
  2. Meanwhile bring about 5-6 cups of water to a boil in a sauce pan. 
  3. Heat oil in the same kadai and pop the mustard seeds. 
  4. Add channa dal and roast it for a minute till it turns golden brown. Then add asafoetida and curry leaves.
  5. Add about 4 cups of the boiling water. Add salt to this water.
  6. Gradually add the roasted rava while constantly stirring.
  7. Reduce the heat and cover with a lid. Cook for 5-7 minutes.
  8. If required, add additional hot water to adjust the consistency.

For Chutney

  1. Take the coconut, dry red chilies, garlic, ginger and pottukadalai in a mixie jar.
  2. Add little water and salt. Grind to a smooth chutney.
  3. Add some more water and make it a sooth and runny chutney.
  4. Add a seasoning of mustard seeds and curry leaves.

Serving Suggestion

  • Take 2 scoops of the hot upma and make a dent in between. Pour a ladle full of chutney and serve hot.

More Upma Recipes

Quinoa Vegetable Upma Quinoa Upma Oats Upma Oats Upma Rava Coconut Upma Rava Coconut Upma Idli Upma Idli Upma
See more ⟩⟩

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Comments (2)

Person   ()
Just wanted to say thank you for the recipe and story. I tried it today & my husband couldn’t get enough. I had been looking for a variation of upma for a while, but wasn’t able ti find something like I envisioned. As soon as I read your post, I knew my search was over. As a foodie, I could immediately relate to your nostalgic craving. It’s something about aromas, flavors & textures that transports us back in time. It somehow awakens our senses and makes us rekindle that feel-good feeling that was once triggered on us by certain things at some point in our lives. Thank you again. From now onwards, we’ll cherish your recipe and tell the story. Namaste.
Person   ()
True. Food is a feeling. It brings back good memories, soothes our soul and enlightens our mood. Enjoy cooking and eating.

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 Published by on and last updated on 2023-08-16.