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+ servings
A bowl of quinoa and topped with cashew nuts
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5 from 9 votes

Quinoa Upma

Make this Indian quinoa recipe to start your day with a bright and vibrant breakfast that you can prepare in less than 15 minutes.
Prep Time4 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time14 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Indian
Allergen: Dairy free, Peanut free, Soy free
Difficulty: Easy
Servings: 5 people
Calories: 307kcal


  • 2 cups quinoa
  • 2 ½ cup water
  • 2 carrots chopped
  • ¼ cup frozen peas
  • 1 to mato chopped
  • 1 strand curry leaves
  • 1 teaspoon grated ginger
  • 2 green chilies sliced
  • 2 tablespoon oil
  • 3 tablespoon cashew nuts
  • ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
  • ½ teaspoon urad dal or split black gram
  • 1 red chili
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • Cilantro leaves for garnishing - optional


  • First, press saute and add cooking oil to the inner pot. When the oil heats up add mustard seeds, urad dal, and red chili. Saute them until mustard seeds sizzle. Add curry leaves, cashews, ginger, and green chilies. Saute them all up to 30 seconds.
  • Add chopped tomatoes and stir occasionally to make sure it doesn’t stick to the inner pot. Now add the chopped carrots, and frozen peas and mix well.
  • Meanwhile, wash the quinoa in clean water. Rinse and drain them. Now add the rinsed quinoa, salt, and water to the inner pot.
  • Close the Instant Pot lid and press cancel.
  • Press the ‘pressure cook’ option and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Once the timer is done. Wait until the pressure is naturally released. Open the lid and fluff the quinoa with a fork. Add lemon juice and garnish with cilantro. Quinoa Upma is ready! Serve hot with chai.

Stovetop method

  • Place a vessel over medium heat. Fry the spices (Mustard seeds, and Black gram) and red chilies in 3 tablespoon oil.
  • Then add ginger, green chilies, fry it for a few seconds, followed by chopped onions(optional). When the onions turn transparent, add tomatoes.
  • Now add the mixed vegetables and saute them for a few minutes and add salt. Stir them well. Later, add washed quinoa and 3 cups water and continue to stir to make sure you have an even mixture.
  • Place a lid and let it simmer (on low flame). After 20 minutes of quinoa, Upma is ready


  • If you want upma on the softer side, add ¼ cup more water.
  • Add your choice of vegetables to add more variety.
  • Some options include capsicum and cauliflower florets.
  • Store this for up to a week in an airtight container or box.
  • This is perfect for lunch boxes as well. But make sure it doesn’t get too dry. To avoid that, you would add a little more water when you prepare the dish.
  • You can even add garam masala powder to make it more flavorful.
Note: The nutrition values I show here are my best estimates. Please be sure to check your preferred nutrition calculator, if you are relying on accurate calculations in your diet.


Serving: 4g | Calories: 307kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 128mg | Potassium: 606mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 3g | Vitamin A: 182IU | Vitamin C: 21mg | Calcium: 63mg | Iron: 4mg