Ever Tried Upperi? It’s The South Indian Version Of Shakarpare
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South Indian cuisine is quite versatile, combining regional tastes and styles of cooking. No wonder it is rich, extensive, and is a celebration of different flavours. One can find different versions of one dish, made using different ingredients and cooking methods. For instance, a simple sambar finds multiple variations across the region. Gunpowder (podi masala) is another ingredient, which is extensively used in various ways. Again, there are many lesser-known local dishes that are worth exploring. Likewise, there are different ways of making these delicacies too.  

Upperi from Kerala is one such dish. It’s a local sweet dish prepared using banana, jaggery, and a few other ingredients. Upperi is crispy and leaves you wanting for more just after one bite. To make this treat at home, raw bananas are first cut into cubes and then fried (like banana chips). They are then dipped in jaggery syrup. Due to its crispy texture, it is also considered a distant cousin to the classic north Indian Shakarpare. If that doesn’t pique your interest, you’ll be surprised to know that in 2022, Upperi made it to the list of most popular Indian dishes, published by Taste Atlas. Interesting, isn’t it?

In Kerala, you will find Upperi prepared in almost every household. In fact, it holds an important place in an Onam Sadya spread too. You can also find readymade packages of it across several local shops in the southern state. However, if you are looking to prepare a fresh batch of Upperi at home, we’ve got you covered. 

All you need is banana, jaggery, rice flour, cardamom powder, and cumin powder. Simply cut soaked and peeled raw bananas into bite-sized cubes, fry them until they turn golden, coat in jaggery syrup and toast them in rice flour. You can pair the sweet and crunchy Upperi with your evening chai. Here’s a detailed recipe: 


2 cups raw bananas (cut into cubes) 

1 cup jaggery 

1 tbsp rice flour 

1 tsp cumin powder 

1 tsp cardamom powder 

Oil, to fry 


  • Soak the cubed bananas in warm water for 4-5 minutes and strain it. Keep it aside. 
  • Dry roast the rice flour on medium to low flame. Make sure to not burn the flour.  
  • Heat oil in a pan and deep fry the bananas until they are crispy and golden brown in colour. 
  • Take another pan, pour some water and add the jaggery to it to make the syrup. Boil it till the jaggery melts. 
  • Add cardamom powder and cumin powder to it and stir. 
  • In the boiling jaggery syrup, add the fried bananas and cook until the former is almost absorbed. 
  • Switch off the flame and add roasted flour to it and mix. The rice flour will prevent the sticky-texture of the syrup.