Millet Upma Recipe: Step-by-Step Guide to Delicious Foxtail Millet Upma

Foxtail millet, known as “thinai” in Tamil, is used to make thinai upma. You can use any millet rava instead of thinai rava and follow the same steps. This upma is tasty and filling, perfect for breakfast or dinner. It pairs well with coconut chutney or brinjal gothsu. Here’s how to make thinai rava upma using this simple recipe with step-by-step pictures.


  • 1 cup Thinai Rava or any millet rava
  • 1/2 cup grated Coconut
  • 1/4 cup Tur Dal
  • 1 tsp Ghee/Clarified Butter
  • Salt to taste
  • 2 1/2 – 2 3/4 cups Water

For Seasoning:

  • 2 tbsp Oil
  • 1 tsp Mustard Seeds
  • 1 tsp Urad Dal
  • 1 tsp Bengal Gram Dal
  • 3-4 Red Dry Chillies (broken into halves)
  • 1/4 tsp Hing/Asafoetida
  • A sprig of Curry Leaves


  • Soak tur dal in hot water for 15-20 minutes. Drain the water completely and grind it coarsely without adding water. Keep it aside.


  1. Heat oil in a pan/kadai, add mustard seeds. When they splutter, add bengal gram, urad dal, hing, red chillies, and curry leaves.
  2. Once the dals turn golden brown, add the coarsely ground tur dal and sauté for 2-3 minutes on low heat.
  3. Add grated coconut and sauté for 5-6 seconds. Then, add water and salt as needed.
  4. When the water starts boiling, reduce the heat. Add a teaspoon of ghee and gradually add the millet rava with one hand while stirring continuously with your other hand to prevent lumps.
  5. Mix well and cook on low heat until it thickens.
  6. Transfer it to another container and pressure cook for 3 whistles. Once the pressure subsides, open the cooker and serve hot with coconut chutney.

Alternatively, you can cook it directly in the cooker instead of using a kadai. In that case, cook on low heat without the whistle until done, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.

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