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+ servings
Rolled Oats, Spiced Oats

Steel Cut Oats Upma

Oats upma is an Indian style savory oats. A quick, healthy breakfast to start the day.
Course Breakfast
Cuisine Indian, South Indian
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 10 minutes
Servings 2
Calories 271kcal
Author Usha Rao


  • 1 Cutting board & knife
  • 1 Instant Pot 3 qt
  • 1 Spoon or a Spatula


  • 2 teaspoon Oil
  • ¼ teaspoon Cumin Seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon Mustard Seeds
  • ½ teaspoon Urad Dal
  • 4 Curry Leaves
  • 2 small Green Chilies cut into ½” pieces adjust to taste
  • 2 tablespoons Peanuts
  • 2-3 tablespoons chopped Onion
  • ½ teaspoon Salt adjust to taste
  • ½ cup Steel Cut Oats check notes if using rolled oats
  • 1 cup Water
  • Cilantro / Coriander Leaves to garnish


  • Wash, chop onion and ginger, and cut green chilies. Wash curry leaves and if the leaves are big, tear the leaves to two.
  • Set instant pot on sauté setting. Add oil and once hot add Urad dal, mustard & cumin seeds. Follow the same steps even for Indian cooker.
  • When the seeds splutter, add green chilies, ginger and sauté for a few seconds.
  • Add curry leaves, peanuts and continue to sauté for another ½ a minute or until peas start to change color.
  • Then sauté onions, then Add salt, oats and roast until oats are light brown. This takes about a minute.
  • Add water and give a good stir.
  • Cancel sauté setting.
  • Close the lid, vent in the sealing position.
  • Pressure cook for 5 minutes on manual or pressure cook setting. With Indian cooker, 4-5 whistles.
  • Let the pressure release manually, about 10-12 minutes.
  • Open the lid, give a good stir, sprinkle cilantro and serve.



  • Ghee - Use a combination of ghee and oil or only ghee for more flavor. It tastes good even with oil but ghee increases the taste quotient to another level. 
  • Indian Pressure Cooker - I prefer cooking steel cut oats in IP.  With Indian pressure cookers, do 4-5 whistles/hisses.  I avoid these cookers as oats tend to get stuck in the pressure vent or spills out.  
  • Variation - For a tangy flavor, add some tomatoes. After sautéing onions, add chopped tomatoes, salt and sauté  until tomatoes are soft. Then add oats and continue with rest of the preparation.
  • Rolled Oats - Follow above instructions but on stovetop in a saucepan or a sauté  pan.  You can skip onion and ginger, if you wish. You can replace peanuts with green peas or veggies now.  Cook oats with 1:1 ½ oats to water ratio and cook on medium flame.
  • Nutrition - Values listed are approximate calculations.


Calories: 271kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Sodium: 740mg | Potassium: 96mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 79IU | Vitamin C: 46mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 2mg