Samo Rice Upma, Samo Rice Pulav, Varai Pulav

Varai Pulav | Samai Pulao | Samo Rice Upma

I made Varyache Tandul and Danyachi Amti for Ashadi Ekadashi and has a bit of Samo Rice or Varai leftover. Then my friend Aparna made Samo Rice Upma with it the same afternoon and I thought what a great idea. You could have also called it Samo Rice Pulao | Varai Pulav | Samai Pulav as it had all the veggies in it.

So this evening I tried Aparna’s way of cooking Samo Rice (or Varai as it is called in Marathi) and it turned out just great. I ate it with Curd or Yogurt, but you could also serve it with Sambar or Raita.

Samo Rice Pulao or Varai Pulao

Recipe for Varai Pulav | Samai Pulao | Samo Rice Upma

Varai Pulav | Samai Pulao | Samo Rice Upma
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
30 mins
Total Time
40 mins
This is a variation of an mixed vegetable upma made with Varai or Samo (also called Little Millet in English).
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 4 Cups
Author: Aruna
  • 1 Cup Samo Rice or Varai
  • 1/3 Cup Finely Chopped Carrot
  • 1/3 Cup Finely Chopped Beans
  • 1/3 Cup Peas
  • 4 to 5 Green Chillies
  • 1 tsp Jeera or Cumin Seeds
  • 1/2 tsp Rai or Mustard Seeds
  • 1/3 tsp Grated Ginger
  • 1 tbsp Ghee (Vegans use oil)
  • 6 Cups Water
  • A Few Curry Leaves
  • Salt to Taste
  1. Dry roast the Samo Rice for about 5 minutes.
  2. Spread in a plate and set aside.
  3. In a kadhai or wok, heat the ghee.

  4. Add the mustard seeds and wait till they splutter.
  5. Add the cumin seeds.
  6. Stir-fry for a few seconds.
  7. Add the finely chopped green chillies, grated ginger and curry leaves.
  8. Stir-fry for a few seconds.
  9. Add the carrots, beans, and peas.
  10. Stir-fry for a couple of minutes.
  11. Add 3 cups of water.
  12. Over medium heat cook the vegetables till done.
  13. Add 3 cups water and some salt.
  14. Bring to a boil.
  15. Add the roasted Samo.
  16. Mix well.
  17. Cover and cook till all the water is absorbed and the Samo Rice/Varai is cooked.
  18. Serve the Samo Rice Upma or Varai Pulav hot with some Raita and Papad.


Varai Pulav | Samai Pulao | Samo Rice Upma


  1. wow you could prepare such a great pulao with sama rice. hats off dear. This navratri I tried and it was a mess sticky rice. Your came out so great., bookmarked.

  2. I use sama only during fasting but never ever thought of making upma with it. Thanks for this wonderful idea and I will try it next time when I buy the rice.

  3. I am a crazy fan of upma, while my husband isn’t. Like a true palakkad Iyer, I love my upma with sakkarai and nei. Although it is not a good idea (sugar esp) to have everyday, I dont mind cheating few days when I really have the craving. I have turned to millets and mix it with dalia too at times and just add loads of veggies just like you have done and serve in place of rice along with a kadhi or dal. Honestly, dont miss the rice. Its filling and delicious. Why eat it only on fasts, when you can enjoy everyday or atleast twice a week.

  4. This samo rice looks like a lovely alternate to normal rice. I love the fact that you can make so many different dishes with it.

  5. What a healthy, nutritious and delicious upma that is. I am definitely going to try this one real soon. Thank you for sharing this simple everyday recipe.

  6. I love mixed vegetables pulao but never tried it with Samo rice. This looks great! A totally new recipe for me to try. ?

      1. Hi Aruna what is the Tamil name is it thinking Samali Varati or kudiraivali ? What is vratham rice in north India?

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