7-Ingredient Veggie Champuru with Cabbage | Gluten-Free | Blue Zone Japan

This recipe is from the Blue Zone Okinawa, Japan. People there reach 90 to 100 years of age, and are free of disease.

They are outliving the average American by 8 to 10 years.

This is something they eat often. Unlike most Asian cultures, the main carbohydrate (starch) they eat is not rice. It is sweet potatoes. In fact it’s ⅔ of their diet. So, that’s what I paired with the dish today. 

If you steam sweet potatoes, they only take about 10 minutes, instead of 1 ½ hours in the oven. It’s how I like to prepare my sweet potatoes now. 
This is the basic recipe. It called for bean sprouts, but I didn’t have any this time, so I used cabbage. I liked it better than with the sprouts. 
It’s simple and light. It’s something I can eat for dinner and sleep well, without nightmares, so its a winner in my book!


Serves 3


* 1 T sesame oil

* 1 lb. firm tofu, cut in 1” cubes

* 1 clove garlic, minced

* 1 carrot, julienned

* 1 bunch greens, chopped stems and leaves

* 1 cup cabbage, thinly sliced 

* 1 T soy sauce


1. Heat oil and stir fry tofu 2 minutes or until golden brown, then remove tofu for heat and set aside

2. In same pan add the garlic, carrots, cabbage, stems of greens and stir fry 2 minutes.

3. Then add leaves of greens. Sauté until wilted about 2 minutes. Then season with soy sauce. Serve with a sprinkle of sesame seeds if desired. Nice with steamed sweet potatoes. 

More Blue Zones recipes you might like: 

View this post on Instagram

Gallo Pinto or “spotted rooster” in Spanish gets its name for the speckled appearance of the black beans against the white rice. 🐔 . This is what Jose Guevara, a healthy 105-year old in Costa Rica ate nearly every day and many other Costa Ricans eat it every day too. This is his recipe. . I made this dish with the wonderful staff at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for our 4th Wellness Wednesday together. Thank you Mimi @tmimi95 and Minal @minal_tolani once again for hosting me! . It’s a simple and humble recipe as Jose is I’m sure. All you need to do before is have your cooked black beans and white rice ready. Then the recipe is put together in a matter of 10 minutes. . This rice bowl is topped with a super hot Chilero sauce- a mix of chiles and pickled carrots and onions. The result is a beautiful, colorful plant-strong meal for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. . Some of the staff had a great idea to add plantains to the dish and that would definitely be a perfect companion to this dish. . I thought an egg on some occasions could be nice too. Here is the recipe for this Costa Rican “fried rice” . Jose Guevara’s Gallo Pinto (Rice and Beans) 🌱 . TOTAL COOK TIME: 20 MINUTES | MAKES 3 SERVINGS . *1½ tablespoons vegetable oil *1 onion, chopped *1 clove garlic, minced *2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce (vegan use soy sauce or squeeze of lemon or lime juice) *1½ cups cooked black beans (or one 8-ounce can black beans, drained) *3 cups cooked long-grain white rice *Salt and pepper (optional) *½ avocado, sliced, for topping (optional) *Chilero hot sauce (optional garnish) *Chopped cilantro (optional garnish) . Directions: 1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and sauté until it starts to soften, about 4 minutes. 2. Add garlic and cook for another 5-7 minutes, or until vegetables are browned. Add Worcestershire sauce and beans; turn heat to low and stir. Cook for 2-3 minutes more. 3. Add rice and stir to combine. Cook and stir until rice and beans are evenly distributed and are heated through. 4. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with sliced avocado, hot sauce, and chopped cilantro, if desired.

A post shared by Chef Joanna’s Kitchen (@chefjoannas) on

Leave a Reply