Meals in Japanese

Let's talk about Meals in Japanese

Meals consist of Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner. These three are the most important meals.

Every country or every person has different categories for their meals. But for this blog, I will only include common categories for Meals.

My normal meals are Breakfast, Lunch, Snack time, and Dinner. As an Asian, Rice is a must in every meal. Breakfast also has rice. Though, I already reduced my consumption of rice because, well, I am not young anymore and I have to be careful with what I eat.

しょくじ (食事 – Shokuji) means Meal in Japanese. Mealtime is しょくじのじかん (食事の時間 – Shokuji no jikan)

Let's check the Japanese terms of mealtime.

Rice is こめ ( - Kome) in Japanese but the cooked Rice is called ごはん (ご飯 - Gohan). It can also translated to ライス (Raisu) for the Katakana sound.

おごはんはすきですか? (おご飯は好きですか?) (Ogohan ha suki desu ka?) Do you like Rice?

Food is たべもの (食べ物 - Tabemono)、 while Japanese dish or food is called にほんりょうり (日本料理 – Nihon Ryouri). Western style meal is called ようしょく (洋食 - Youshoku).

どんなたべものがすきですか?にほんりょうり?それとも、ようしょくですか?(どんな食べ物が好きですか?日本料理?それとも、洋食ですか?) (Donna tabemono ga suki desu ka? Nihon ryouri? Soretomo, youshoku desu ka?) What kind of food do you like? Japanese food? Or is it Western food?

Breakfast is あさごはん (朝ご飯 – Asa Gohan), casual term for breakfast while the polite form is ちょうしょく (朝食 – Choushoku)

ちょうしょくになにをたべましたか? (朝食に何を食べましたか?) (Choushoku ni nani wo tabemashita ka?) What did you eat for breakfast?

あさごはんはたべましたか? (朝ご飯は食べましたか?) (Asagohan ha tabemashita ka?) Did you have breakfast?

For lunch, the casual term is ひるごはん (昼ご飯 – Hiru Gohan) while the polite term is ちゅうしょく (昼食 – Chuushoku).

おひるごはんのじかんですか? (お昼ご飯の時間ですか?) (Ohirugohan no jikan desu ka?) Is it time for lunch?

Dinner is ばんごはん (晩御飯 – Bangohan) or ゆうしょく (夕食 – Yuushoku). Supper is called やしょく (夜食 – Yashoku)

おいしいばんごはんをありがとうございました。 (おいしい晩御飯をありがとうございました。) (Oishii bangohan wo arigatou gozaimashita.) Thank you for a delicious dinner. 

For breaktime or snack time, there are different ways of calling it.

  •  きゅうけいじかん
    (Kyuukei jikan)

  •  コーヒーブレイク
    (Ko-hi- bureiku)
    Coffee break

  •  おやつのじかん
    (Oyatsu no jikan)
    Snack time

  • おちゃのじかん
    (Ocha no jikan)

  • まよなかのおやつ
    (Mayonaka no oyatsu)
    Midnight snacks

In Japan, before they eat, they always say いただきます (Itadakimasu). いただきます is like a prayer, the way a Christian family does before eating. There is no literal meaning of いただきます in the English word. It is an expression of receiving a meal and thanking the animals and plants for the food. Also, it is an appreciation to all those who are responsible for the food on the table.


After eating, you say ごちそうさまでした (Gochisou samadeshita). Means thank you for a delicious meal.  There are a lot of ways of expressing ごちそうさまでした. So be careful. If you are in your house or a friend invited you to a meal in their house, you can always say ごちそうさまでした after eating. If you are dining in a restaurant, you can say ごちそうさまでした to the restaurant staff after paying your bill as gratitude towards them. In a group meal, if someone else is paying for your meal, you can say your gratitude to that person. But do not say ごちそうさまでした directly to someone else if you are paying your bill because that person might be forced to pay yours or it might burden them to pay for your meal.

For a better image, you can check the picture library in the link: 

Pictures: Meals inJapanese

---------------------------------- If you want to check my previous post, you can check it through the link below:
>> Fruits in Japanese

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>> The Katakana Character
>> The Hiragana Character

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>> Word of the Week 9 For YouTube Videos:
>> Japanese Words| Hiragana | I-adjectives PART 5 For Monthly Grammar:
>> Monthly Grammar: Part 1
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