Your kids deserve a power lunch. Fortunately, it’s pretty easy to consistently deliver one with a bento box. They’re convenient and they always seem to make healthy foods look beautiful. If you want try you hand at bento boxes, keep reading for plenty of lunch ideas for school using these trendy containers.
Bento boxes were designed to make packing healthy meals on the go easy. Traditionally made of wood, bentos now come in steel and plastic. All are reusable so you can stop using plastic zip loc baggies. Here are some features that make up a great bento box:
Resistant to corrosion, heat damage, and chemical damage. Don’t balk at the price tag, you’ll get years of solid use out of a stainless steel bento box.
Let’s be honest, the dishwasher is the easiest way to clean everything, including bento boxes!
Look for options that are completely leak-proof or ones with specific leak-proof sections. You will want these for dips or yogurt.
Some of our favorite bento boxes are:
- Classic Quad from Lunchbots: This one isn’t leak-proof, but it is super compact, made of 18/8 stainless steel, and comes in a variety of lid colors.
- Seed & Sprout Stacker: Stainless steel, deep enough to fit a sandwich, and two-tiered to make it more compact.
- Spencer Stainless Bento Box from Pottery Barn Kids: The lid is sure to stay put on this bento box and its dishwasher safe.
Searching #bentobox on instagram can be a little intimidating. Some people make an artform out of it - it’s called “charaben.” You don’t have to go over the top to call your box a success. Focus on simplicity and balance. Pick one item from each of these four categories and you’ll have a perfect bento every time!
- Chicken Tenders: Take chicken tenderloins, cooking oil or spray, and grill until cooked through. Dice them up into smaller pieces for easy eating and bonus points for adding a dipping sauce!
- Yogurt: Pack yogurt by itself, with granola, or use it as a dip for veggies. Watch out for the sugar content, some can be excessive. We like Siggi’s icelandic yogurt because it’s high in protein, without a lot of sugar.
- Hummus: Great for dipping vegetables like carrots and celery.
- Whole Grain Pasta Salad: Cook pasta for 8-12 minutes, drain, and mix in a bowl with Italian dressing, cucumbers, tomatoes, peppers, and cheese. Once thoroughly mixed, cool in the fridge until serving.
- Jasmine Rice: Cook fried, Pilaf, or however you take it.
- PB&J Flatbread: Peanut butter is a good source of protein and healthy fats. Take a flatbread, spread peanut butter on both sides, add desired amount of jam or a banana, and cut into smaller sections. Pro tip: try toasting both sides of the sandwich on a skillet. You could even use Vegetable Quesadillas.
- Sweet Potato: Great source of vitamins A and C and full of flavor.
- Crackers/Cheese/Grapes: Super simple snack that goes with almost any meal.
- Edamame: Loaded with plant-based protein and fiber. Edamame can be eaten in many ways, but is popularly steamed or boiled.
- Fruit Burst: Finish up the meal with more vitamins and nutrients from a bowl of fresh fruit, like strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, grapes, watermelon, and cantaloupe.
Terra’s Kitchen makes perfectly portioned meals easy. Get ingredients shipped to your door, pre-chopped and pre-portioned, ready to be cooked in 30 minutes or less. Meal delivery is convenient and saves you time at the end of the day. Order your first delivery today.