Savory Quinoa With Mustard Seeds and Curry Leaves
Quinoa Upma
Upma is a popular semolina-based breakfast in Maharashtra, western India. An updated twist to this classic breakfast favorite, Quinoa Upma is cooked with the flavorful tadka of mustard seeds, urad daal, and cashews. Mildly spicy with green chiles, this dish is served with fresh cilantro and a drizzle of fresh lime, and it can also be enjoyed for lunch or dinner.
Servings Prep Time
4servings 5minutes
Cook Time
Servings Prep Time
4servings 5minutes
Cook Time
  • 2tbsp neutral vegetable oil
  • 1/2tsp black mustard seeds
  • 1pinch hing(asafetida; optional)
  • 2tbsp cashew pieces
  • 1tbsp urad daal
  • 1 small yellow onionfinely diced
  • 1 carrotpeeled and cut into small dice
  • 2 small hot green chileshalved lengthwise
  • 10 curry leaveschopped
  • 1cup quinoarinsed and thoroughly drained
  • 1 1/2cups Water
  • 1/2cups fresh or frozen green peas or corn kernels(optional)
  • 1 1/2tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 lime
  • 1/2cup chopped fresh cilantro
  1. Select the high Sauté setting on the Instant Pot and heat the oil. Add the mustard seeds and hing directly to the hot oil at the bottom edges of the pot and cook until the mustard seeds start to pop, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the cashews and urad daal and sauté until the cashews turn golden brown, about 1 minute. Add the onion, carrot, chiles, and curry leaves and sauté until the onion is translucent, about 2 minutes. Stir in the quinoa and sauté until toasted, about 2 minutes. Add the water, peas, and salt and stir to combine. Scrape down the sides of the pot to make sure all the quinoa is submerged in the water.
  2. Secure the lid and set the Pressure Release to Sealing. Press the Cancel button to reset the cooking program, then select the Pressure Cook or Manual setting and set the cooking time for 2 minutes at high pressure.
  3. Let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then move the Pressure Release to Venting to release any remaining steam. Open the pot, squeeze in the juice from the lime, and stir in the cilantro.
  4. Spoon the upma into bowls and serve.
Recipe Notes

For a more traditional Indian upma look, use white quinoa.