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Bento Box Basics: 5 Helpful Tips

Bento Box Basics: 5 Helpful Tips


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Let's face it, bag lunches can be a real snooze. Even when you're a good cook, keeping things interesting and varied is a definite challenge. Enter the bento box, your all-in-one, fun to make, fun to look at, fun to eat, creative lunch solution.

This is not a new concept — Americans, particularly moms, have been adopting this typical style of Japanese home-packed meal for several years now. And it makes perfect sense. Turn a complete meal with protein, veggies and other good-for-you foods into a minature landscape of too-cute-for-words shapes and animals? Jackpot. That said, don't be so quick to write this off as a kids-only concept. Chef Rick Gresh of David Burke's Primehouse, has found a home for the technique on his brunch menu, offering a variety of creative themed boxes (like the Hangover Cure, a personal favorite). The key, he says, is to keep all the individual components bite-sized.

Newcomers to the bento game need not be intimidated, we recently spoke with Chef Miki Willis of mái cuisine in New York City who shared some helpful pointers, listed below.

1. Choose Solid Foods

Choose solid items to put into the bento boxes, "soupy" foods will make a mess.

2. Extra Salt, Please

Season items a bit more strongly than your everyday home meals. This way, they won't taste bland when the bento cools down.

3. The "3 Magic Colors"

Try to arrange ingredients into the "3 magic colors" to make your bento look delicious:

Red: Plum tomatoes, red peppers, red ginger, strawberry

Green: Green beans, peas, broccoli, edamame, Granny Smith apples

Yellow (or Orange): Egg, chicken nuggets, spring rolls, carrots, yams

4. Play it Cool

Cool down hot or warm food before placing them into the bento box. If hot and cold item are touching, the bento will spoil faster.

5. Rice Ball Substitutes

Typical bentos are made with a side of rice or onigiri (rice balls), however, you can use sandwiches and wraps if they are cut into small pieces, as Japanese people often do.

For some artistic inspiration, check out the Bento Box Basics Slideshow.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


15 Beautiful Bento Box Lunches

If you need a handy new lunchbox to take to school or work or for on the go, these bento boxes will do the trick in style! They're perfect for handy meal prep, as you can create your meals in advance and stash in the fridge, ready to go when you need them. Bento boxes come in all shapes and sizes, from 2 compartment and 3 compartment plastic boxes, to stack-able round or rectangular stainless steel boxes, to fun kid-friendly containers featuring snow owl, fox, and lion decals. Let your imagination go wild. For inspiration, here are some complete bento box ideas for easy and nutritious lunches or snacks. All have delicious, healthy components that pair super well together.


Watch the video: Modern Japanese Lunch Box Factory - How it made Bento - Japanese Bento Manufacture (May 2022).