Lemon Sevai (Rice Noodles with Lemon)

Lemon Sevai
Lemon Sevai

Busy work days call for simple dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And the past few weeks have been really busy! As a result, my family has been subjected to the UpmaPohaIdli routine for breakfast. I have not even made it as far as dosa!

I don’t know about my family but I was getting quite tired of the same old stuff for breakfast, so this week I tried to get some variety into breakfast. One day I made masala omelette and today I made Lemon Sevai (also called Lemon Idiyappam).

Lemon Sevai is a very popular in South India that is had for breakfast or as “tiffin” item with afternoon tea. I know some families which have it for dinner as well.

Sevai or Idiyappam is the name given to rice vermicelli or thin rice noodles that are made in South India.

While most households made sevai at home in days of yore, now we get readymade dried sevai that just needs to be boiled. For this recipe, I used market-bought dried sevai, but will post the recipe for freshly made sevai soon.

I have already blogged about Coconut Sevai earlier last year.

Serves: 4

Time: 40 Minutes


  1. Rice Sevai – 150 gms
  2. Lemon  – 1 Large
  3. Mustard Seeds – 1 tsp
  4. Udad Dal – 1 tsp
  5. Chana Dal – 1 tsp
  6. Green Chillies – 3 or 4
  7. Turmeric – 1/4 tsp
  8. Curry Leaves – 4 or 5
  9. Oil – 2 tbsp
  10. Salt to Taste


  1. Boil 1 litre of water with 1/2 tsp of salt.
  2. When the water boils, turn off the heat and add the dried sevai to it.
  3. Cover and set aside for 5 to 7 minutes.
  4. Ensure that the sevai is cooked and drain all the water using a colander.
  5. Let the sevai drain in the colander for at least 20 minutes.
  6. In a wok or kadai, heat the oil.
  7. Add mustard seeds and wait till they splutter.
  8. Add udad dal and chana dal.
  9. Fry till the dals turn golden brown.
  10. Add turmeric, slit green chillies and curry leaves.
  11. Stir fry for 10 seconds.
  12. Turn off the heat.
  13. Let cool for a couple of minutes.
  14. Squeeze the lemon into the tempering.
  15. Mix well.
  16. Add the drained sevai and mix with a gentle hand till all stands are coated with turmeric and lemon juice.
  17. Add salt and mix well.
  18. Serve warm with coconut chutney.


  • To test if sevai is “cooked,” pick up one strand and press with your fingernail. The strand should break easily but should not “squish.”
  • You can also add some peanuts along with udad dal and chana dal.
  • I sometimes add fresh boiled peas.
Lemon Sevai
Lemon Sevai


I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions. Do leave me a comment.