When I start living alone, I worry about the lack of vegetables due to my eating habits being disturbed. Many people may feel that the amount and quality of vegetables has decreased compared to when they lived at home.
Here, we will introduce you to the reasons why people who live alone lack vegetables, how to solve this problem, and simple recipes using vegetables.
Reasons for lack of vegetables in single households
Why is there a shortage of vegetables when you live alone? Here are the main reasons why.
Fewer meals, more eating out
When you live alone, you have to do all the household chores yourself. If you’re busy with study or work, you may not have time to shop for meals or even prepare a balanced meal.
Then, you tend to rely on eating out or reduce the number of meals. Easily prepared meals such as soba, ramen, and rice bowls often fill your stomach but don’t include many vegetables.
In addition, some people gradually neglect their meals because they do not have anyone to eat with. Repeated statements such as, “I’m busy, so I don’t have to eat breakfast” and “I’m alone anyway, so let’s make it easy for dinner” are one of the factors that lead to vegetable shortages.
I only eat what I like
When you live alone, you can eat what you want, when you want. In extreme terms, you don’t have to eat vegetables even if you use snacks instead of rice. Some people may feel happy in an environment where they can eat whatever they want.
However, of course, if you only eat what you like, your nutrition will be biased. After enjoying your freedom, you need to exercise self-restraint and try to have a well-balanced diet, or the shortage of vegetables will become a serious problem.
Lack of variety in self-catering options
How much effort you put into eating alone also depends on whether or not you like cooking. If you are not good at cooking, you will not feel like cooking for yourself.
Also, no matter how much you love cooking, you have to buy a lot of food to prepare variations for each meal, and the menu tends to be limited due to the burden of shopping and the worry of surplus.
How to solve the lack of vegetables?
If you live alone and are aware of the lack of vegetables, how can you solve the lack of vegetables? Here are three methods.
Know the amount of vegetables you need and increase your intake with easy cooking methods
First of all, you need to know the amount of vegetables you need per day and objectively review your current vegetable intake.
According to “Health Japan 21,” a national health promotion movement in the 21st century announced by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the target amount of vegetables that an adult should consume in a day is “350g or more a day (of which 120g or more is green and yellow vegetables).” is stipulated. This is the same for both adult men and women.
However, according to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare’s National Health and Nutrition Survey in 2019, the average intake of vegetables was 288.3 g for adult men and 273.6 g for women, both of which did not reach the target. Considering the deficit from the amount of intake for the target value, it is about 1-2 small plates of boiled spinach.
To solve the shortage of vegetables, it is desirable to eat at least one small dish (70 g) of vegetables as the main ingredient at each meal, such as salad, vinegared dish, boiled dish, and simmered dish. However, if you try to make a proper side dish for every meal, the hurdles will suddenly rise.
So, what I would like to recommend is learning a simple way to eat it. The following are some easy ways to eat even if you live alone.
Vegetables that can be washed and eaten as-is are recommended for people who are not good at cooking or who don’t have time. One cucumber, six cherry tomatoes weighs about 100g, and two cabbages weighs about 70g.
・Eat as vegetable sticks
Vegetable sticks made by cutting cucumbers, carrots, daikon radish, etc. into thin strips are also useful when you want another vegetable dish that is easy to eat. Using multiple vegetables adds color and has the effect of whetting the appetite.
Making soup from leftover vegetables in the refrigerator or frozen vegetables reduces bulk compared to fresh vegetables, making them easier to eat and filling. If you want to reduce the amount of washing up, just put frozen vegetables in a mug, heat it in the microwave, and add a commercially available soup base and hot water.
・Make it a hot pot
dish.A typical easy dish that includes plenty of vegetables is a hot pot dish. Simply putting Chinese cabbage and mushrooms in a large pot and simmering them together with meat or fish makes a great hot pot dish. We recommend using a single-serve hot pot soup or hot pot base, as even beginners can easily determine the flavor. You can enjoy dishes such as Western-style curry hotpot and Japanese-style chanko without getting tired of them by adjusting the seasoning.
Buy vegetables that last a long time and reuse them
When buying vegetables, rather than buying vegetables that you need to use up in a short period of time, you can buy vegetables that can last for a long time and reuse them, so that you can use up your vegetables without waste even if you live alone. For example, onions, carrots, and radish are recommended. Please refer to the following when saving.
If you want to store whole onions, wrap them in kitchen paper and place them in a cool, well-ventilated place for 1 to 3 months. Wrap the cut pieces tightly in plastic wrap, put them in a storage bag, and put them in the vegetable drawer. They are sensitive to low temperatures, so if the vegetable drawer gets too cold, wrap them in kitchen paper and place them in a storage bag.
Carrots with mud on them can be preserved for a long time by wrapping them in kitchen paper and placing them in a cool, dark place without removing the mud. If you use carrots sold at supermarkets, take them out of the bag, wash them lightly and wipe them dry. If you wrap it in kitchen paper and store it upright in a plastic bag, it can be stored for 2 to 3 weeks without wilting. When processing and storing, cut into bite-sized pieces such as chunks, remove moisture, and place in a freezer bag and freeze.
If you leave the leaves and stems of radish on, the leaves will absorb moisture. After purchasing, immediately separate the leaves, stems, and roots. Wrap the leaves in damp kitchen paper, place them in the vegetable compartment, and use them as soon as possible. The roots can be stored for 4 to 5 days by placing them in a plastic bag and placing them in the vegetable drawer.
Take advantage of cryopreservation
Frozen vegetables are convenient and delicious to eat. Storing foods that can be frozen in the freezer will prolong their shelf life, making them safe even if you live alone and only use a small amount of vegetables per meal. Buy in bulk when vegetables are cheap and freeze them the right way.
People tend to think that there are only a few things that can be frozen, but in fact, you can freeze almost anything, including leaves and mushrooms. Here are five tips for freezing.
<Points to remember when storing vegetables in the freezer>・ Freeze vegetables
immediately after purchase and while they are still fresh. Use it to quickly freeze or cook without thawing
Easy vegetable recipes recommended for people living alone
Here are some easy vegetable recipes for those who live alone. We will also introduce how to freeze leftover vegetables, so please refer to this if you always have trouble using up all your vegetables.
Full of sweetness! “Whole Onion Microwave Steamed”
Onions, which can be stored even at room temperature, are a strong ally in resolving the shortage of vegetables. The sweetness increases when heated, so it adds a lot of flavor to stir-fried dishes and soups. When you can’t use it all up, you can prepare it and freeze it.
This time I’d like to introduce a recipe that uses whole onions and steams them in the microwave.
<Ingredients (for 1 person)>
Onion…1 piece (200g)
Ponzu sauce…as appropriate
<How to make>
1. Cut off the top and bottom of the onion and make cross-shaped cuts at the top and bottom.
2. Place “1” on a heat-resistant plate, wrap it loosely, and heat it in the microwave (600W) for 3 minutes (4 minutes for frozen onions).
3. Before it gets cold, top with butter, ponzu sauce, and bonito flakes.
Once you’ve peeled the onion, you just need to insert a knife, so it’s perfect for when you don’t have time or for those who aren’t good at cooking.
If you use frozen whole onions that have been peeled and cut, the cooking process will be even shorter. The heating time is 4 minutes.
If you have a large amount of onions, freeze them either whole or cut into bite-sized pieces.
・ Whole frozen
Peel the onion, cut off the top and bottom, make a cross cut on the top and bottom, wrap it in plastic wrap, put it in a freezer bag and freeze it.
・Cut and freeze
Cut the onions into wedges, thin slices, mince, etc., and put them in a freezer bag and freeze.
Easy in the microwave! “Boiled radish”
Daikon radish is one of the vegetables that can be easily reused.
The simmered dish is also a standard dish using daikon radish, and it is a recipe that many people, young and old, men and women will love. However, there is an image that it takes time, and it may be difficult to make it if you are busy living alone.
Therefore, we will introduce a recipe that allows you to cook authentic simmered food in the microwave.
<Ingredients (for 2 people)>
Water…3 tablespoons Sake
, soy sauce, mirin…1 tablespoon each
Japanese-style granulated dashi stock…1/2 teaspoon
Yuzu peel (optional)…Appropriate amount
<How to make>
1. Peel the daikon radish and cut it into 1.5cm-thick half-moon slices, then cut in a grid pattern on both sides.
2. Put [A] into a heat-resistant container, mix, and arrange “1” so that they do not overlap.
3. Wrap it loosely and heat it in the microwave (600W) for 2 minutes and 30 seconds. Take it out, turn it over, loosely wrap it in plastic wrap, and heat it in the microwave for another 2 minutes and 30 seconds.
4. Remove and leave covered in plastic wrap for about 10 minutes to let the flavors infuse. Place in a bowl and sprinkle with shredded yuzu peel if desired.
When you think of simmered daikon radish, you may think of simmering it in a pot for a long time, but if you use the microwave, the amount of washing up and effort will be cut in half. It has a seasoning that goes well with rice and alcohol, and if you drain the liquid a little, you can also put it in a lunch box. If you live alone and tend to eat less, try using these side dishes to aim for a well-balanced meal.
Daikon radish can be frozen. If you have ever bought a single daikon radish, but it shriveled before you could use it, or “before you know it, it has become dry and no longer tasty,” you can use it without wasting it by freezing it. .
There are three methods for freezing preservation:
・Cut and store according to the purpose.
Cut the daikon radish according to the purpose and store it in the freezer. For example, cut into strips or ginkgo for miso soup, or slice into rings for simmered dishes or oden. Freezing breaks down the fibers and allows the flavors to absorb in a short time.
・Storage with seasoning If you season
daikon radish with dressing or sweet and sour vinegar and store it in the freezer, you can make it into a great dish for salads or pickles just by thawing it.
・Grate and freeze
When you have time, grate daikon radish in bulk and freeze it so you don’t have to grate it every time you eat it.
Accented with sourness of tomato! “Spinach and Tomato Consomme Soup”
Spinach is a popular green-yellow vegetable with excellent nutritional balance. You can eat it deliciously in ohitashi, Western-style stir-fried butter or quiche.
This time, we will introduce a colorful dish that can be eaten with tomatoes. It contains wieners and is satisfying to eat, and if you use a solid soup base, you can cook quickly. It’s perfect for mornings when you’re busy and want to get a good nourishment.
<Ingredients (for 2 people)>
Spinach… 1/3 bunch (approx. 65g)
Wieners (1cm thick round slices)… 2 pieces
Mini tomatoes (remove the stem and cut in half)… 8 pieces
Salt and pepper…a little each
<How to make>
1. Boil plenty of water in a pan, add a little salt (not listed), and boil the spinach briefly. Raise it to a colander and cut it into 4-5cm long pieces.
2. Put [A] in a pot and put it on medium heat.
3. Once boiling, add “1” and adjust the taste with salt and pepper.
There is an image that leafy vegetables will perish quickly, so if you live alone, you may be hesitant to buy them. Some of you must have felt sad that the leafy vegetables that you sent to us soon withered away.
Spinach is a vegetable that is sensitive to dryness and does not last long, but it can be stored for a long time if frozen.
First, wash the spinach, wipe off the moisture, and cut it into 3-4 cm lengths. Next, divide the cut into small pieces, put them in freezer bags, and freeze them. Freezing them raw saves time and preserves their flavor.
・Boil and then freeze
Wash the spinach, parboil it until hard, put it in ice water to fix the color, then squeeze out the water and cut into 3-4cm lengths. Wrap the cut pieces in plastic wrap and put them in a freezer bag and store in the freezer. Because it is pre-boiled, it has a sweet and soft texture.
Let’s take advantage of the frozen home delivery bento
I don’t have time to shop, and it’s hard to cook for myself. In such a case, we recommend using frozen home-delivered lunch boxes to easily maintain nutritional balance.
With Nichirei Foods’ frozen delivery lunch box ” Kikubari GozenⓇ ” , you can get more than 100g of vegetables in one meal. Moreover, all items have less than 300kcal of calories and less than 2.0g of salt equivalent. You can have a well-balanced meal that combines a variety of main dishes such as meat and fish with several side dishes that are particular about seasoning. For first-timers, we also have a 4-meal trial set with free shipping, so even those who are concerned about taste and quantity can feel free to try it out.
The trial set includes “Kikubari GozenⓇ Demi -glace hamburger and 4 types of side dishes”, “Kikubari GozenⓇ cutlet with egg-flavored style and 3 types of side dishes”, “Kikubari GozenⓇ stewed red fish style and 4 types of side dishes”, “Kikubari GozenⓇ chicken teriyaki ‘ ‘ 4 types of “Yaki style set”. You can specify the delivery date and time, so you can rest assured even if you are busy with work or study.
Let’s get vegetables well by devising cooking and storage methods
Even if you live alone, you can easily get delicious vegetables by devising cooking and storage methods. In order to increase your vegetable intake without spending much time, it is important to buy vegetables that can be stored as long as possible, and freeze those that can be frozen.
If you think, “I have to cook for my health,” or if I get too excited, I might get tired. Let’s continue a healthy diet by taking in vegetables without overdoing it while using frozen home-delivery lunch boxes.
How many vegetables do you need in a day?
According to Health Japan 21, a national health promotion campaign for the 21st century announced by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the target amount of vegetables that adults should consume per day is “350g or more per day (of which 120g or more should be green and yellow vegetables)”.
how to solve the lack of vegetables?
To overcome the lack of vegetables, it is recommended to eat at least one small bowl (70g) of vegetables as the main ingredient, such as salads, vinegared dishes, ohitashi, and simmered dishes, per meal.
Welcome to my blog. My name is Muhammad Hassaan. I am a blogger and have a knowledge of five years of blogging. I also belong to the field of health as a D pharmacy student. That’s why I am running this health blog. I am very much interested to read articles on health and love to share information with other people and also get information from them. If you have any questions you can ask me through the contact us page. Thanks for Visiting us and Have a great day.