Coconut sevai – Rice vermicelli upma / Thengai sevai / Idiyappam

Coconut Sevai is a popular south Indian breakfast which is also known as Thengai Sevai or Thengai Idiyappam. In certain parts of south India this dish is also called as Sevai Upma. Coconut Sevai is a very simple dish made with rice vermicelli roasted in ghee and other Indian spices.  It is often served with coconut or tomato or ginger chutney and/ or pickles. The key ingredient is the Rice Sevai or rice vermicilli ( also called as rice string hoppers) which is commonly available in Indian/Asian grocery shops. Most of the other ingredients are available in Indian grocery shops.   Please try this recipe and if you like it, please share with your friends. I would appreciate if you can leave your feedback with any suggestions and comments.    
Cooking Method
Difficulty Beginner
Cook Time: 30 min
Servings 2

Coconut Sevai is a delicious and healthy south Indian breakfast that is made with boiled Sevai roasted in ghee and spices. 

  • 250 grams Rice Sevai ((also labelled as string hoppers / rice vermicelli))
  • 1 tablespoon Ghee
  • 1 tablespoon Cooking oil
  • 2 teaspoons Mustard seeds
  • 3 teaspoons Urad Dal
  • 3 teaspoons Chana Dal
  • 4 Dried red chillies
  • 2 Green Chillies (Indian / Thai variety)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Hing (Asafoetida)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Grated fresh coconut
  • 15 Curry leaves
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh Cilantro (Chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons Cashews - Halved
  • 2 tablespoons Peanuts
  • 5 cups Water
  • 2 teaspoons Lemon juice (Optional)
  1. Prepare the Rice Sevai
    • Bring water to boil in a pot. Remove from heat
    • Take a separate pan and spread the Sevai
    • Pour the hot water in the pan which has the Sevai. The water should completely immerse the Sevai
    • Let it stand for 5 minutes.
    • Keep a colander ( or a strainer) in the sink. Carefully pour the Sevai with hot water into the colander.
    • Drain the water and let the Sevai rest in the colander.
  2. Adding the spices / tempering / tadka
    • Keep a large non stick pan on stove with the heat on medium level
    • Pour the cooking oil and ghee
    • When you start to see bubbles in the oil, add a few mustard seeds and check if they sputter (pop with a soft noise)
    • If the mustard seeds do not sputter, increase the heat
    • Once the oil and ghee mixture reaches the right temperature, add all the mustard seeds and let them sputter
    • Reduce the heat to lowest level
    • Add Peanuts and stir them for about 2 minutes
    • Add green chillies, dried red chillies, urad dal, chana dal and curry leaves. Keep stirring for 2 minutes 
    • Add Hing (asafoetida) and salt and stir well again
    • Add lemon juice and mix well again (Lemon juice is optional)
  3. Mix the Sevai with the tadka / spices
    • Transfer the Sevai from the colander into the pan which has the tempering
    • Keep the stove on medium heat and mix the Sevai with the tadka /  tempering
    • Add the grated coconut and mix well. 
    • Check for the salt level and add more if needed
    • Reduce the heat to low setting.
    • Close the lid on the pan and let the Sevai cook in the steam for about 6-8 minutes
  4. Prepare the toppings / garnish
    • Roast the cashews in a separate pan.
    • Add one teaspoon of ghee to get a nice aroma.
    • Chop the cilantro
  5. Serving
    • Serve the Coconut Sevai when it is still hot
    • Top the Sevai with Cashews, Cilantro and grated coconut

Coconut Sevai can be served with coconut / tomato / Ginger Chutney or Indian Pickles

Keywords: Coconut, sevai, Rice, vermicelli, upma, Thengai, Idiyappam
Vinay Mummigatti

I love traveling, cooking, and reading. This blog is a reflection of my passion for cooking. Food is a representation of culture and I have tried to assimilate foods from different cultures across the world. I am an Indian by birth who moved to the USA 20 years back. I hope my recipes and articles bring new experiences and joy to the readers. Please share your comments and feedback.