If you’ve ever packed a sandwich to school, then opened your lunchbox to find the sandwich is wet and slimy, you are going to love bento boxes. In Japan, bento boxes are usually made with rice. The rice is molded to make fun shapes. Some bento boxes have rice that looks like flowers or panda bears. Slices of dried seaweed are cut into shapes to decorate the rice.
Here are some fun foods to pack in a bento box. Most of these foods are very familiar, you’ve probably got some of them in your house already. If so, you can make a cool, cute bento box for lunch.
How to Pack a Bento Box
- Think inside The Box. Pack your bento lunch in a small, reuseable container. Square or rectangle containers work especially well.
- Say Cheese. Use small cookie cutters to slice cheese into fun shapes that can decorate your bento box. Try cutting your slices of cheese into hearts, stars, or flowers.
- Be Healthy. Tuck colorful, bite-sized fruits and veggies into your bento to add flair and flavor. Cherry tomatoes, olives, tiny pickles, baby carrots, grapes, and berries are all excellent additions to any bento.
- Pack Some Noodles. You probably don’t have cooked rice or chopsticks lying around in your house. So try this noodle salad, instead. It’s a great thing to pack in your bento. Ask your parents for help cooking the noodles if you don’t know how. And don’t forget to pack a plastic fork in your box!
1 package ramen noodles, cooked and drained
1/4 cup frozen peas
2 tablespoons of cheddar cheese, cut into bite sized squares
2 tablespoons Italian dressing
In a large bowl, stir all of the ingredients together. Spoon into half-cup sized plastic containers before packing in your bento.