nutritious and fun bento box ideas and photos, healthy recipes and tips for making your own bento box lunch

hapa bento

Keep Cool Bento Box Review 7

Posted on July 05, 2011 by Debra

I have a new bento box— compliments of our friends from JaponMania!  They asked me to review their new “Keep Cool Palette” boxes and I of course I agreed.  As a bento-nerd, I love talking about anything that has to do with bento boxes, bento-gear and bento shopping!  Bring it on.

The  first thing you probably noticed is that I did a charaben or kyaraben.   I know, right?  It’s not my usual approach for packing lunches… I’ll tell you more about this along with a special JaponMania discount later in this post.

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Meatless Monday Bento 6

Posted on April 18, 2011 by Debra

Monday is almost over….gotta post this now!

Today’s Meatless Monday bento contains:

Tofu burgers.  I made myself for the first time! I’m so proud.  No recipe yet because they’re not perfect and I have to tweak some ingredients.


Baked kabocha.

Fried scallions.

Enoki mushrooms.


Sprounted rice.

Sesame seed and salt furikake.

Yes, that is a lettuce leaf.  I broke my boycott. :)

2 more minutes…

Gotta post!



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Furikake Chicken Bento 12

Posted on December 13, 2010 by Debra

I feel out-of-it.  We are halfway through  December and I haven’t even attempted a winter themed bento until today!

It’s embarassing I tellya, especially with the holiday B.O.M.B. challenge  up and running! Read the rest of this entry →

Chicken-Sausage Pasta Bento 12

Posted on December 08, 2010 by Debra

We were craving. 


Yay!  Fast, versatile and oh so yummy.

Today’s featured bento (and post)  is a quick one with chicken sausages tossed in marinara sauce with cappellini and topped with shiso leaf. 

Even simpler is the top tier filled with kabocha, broccoli tops and stems.  All roasted of course.

This bento was pulled together in no time at all…and with the holiday crush on “full throttle”… I ’m going to crave  pasta again soon. :)

Saba Sakura Bento Box 16

Posted on April 27, 2010 by Debra

Now that Saba Man is back at work I wanted to send him off with one of his faves!

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Scrambled Eggs Bento 8

Posted on March 27, 2010 by Debra

Our schedules, Saba Man’s and mine,  have been pretty wacky these past weeks and keeping up with packing our lunches at odd times throughout the day and night was a challenge!  And truth be told, Saba Man ended up *whispering* ” buying a lunch” last week!  But now we’ve re-grouped, timing has be re-calibrated and we are back on the bento bandwagon!

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Lucky Shamrock Bento Box 20

Posted on March 17, 2010 by Debra

I’ve heard that Americans celebrate this holiday with more gusto than the Irish living in Ireland!   :)  

With that said, here’s my tribute to the “Emerald Isle” all the way from the “Emerald City”
… a lucky shamrock bento box! Read the rest of this entry →

Baked and Simmered Kabocha 10

Posted on March 17, 2010 by Debra

I took a short intermission and now I’m continuing the “bento-stash” series with  kabocha!  We are nearing the end of winter; the squash and pumpkin season is wrapping up so I’m stocking the freezer with one of my favorite bento fillers… the kabocha!  Its sweet and  firm flesh is perfect for roasting, baking or simmering.  It also keeps well in the freezer for a couple of months if cooked first and wrapped up tight!  Another good property of kabocha is that it’s skin is soft enough to cut through with relative ease and it’s edible!

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Chicken and Kabocha Snack Bento 3

Posted on February 06, 2010 by Debra

Today’s featured bento is a snack size of the “huli huli” chicken bento from a few day’s ago.    Oh… by the way… Saba Man said it tasted more like “Kalua Pig-Chicken”!   Which gives me another cooking idea eh!  But that exercise will be placed to the end of  very long line of projects waiting for fruition. 

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Roasted Kabocha and Chicken Bento 7

Posted on February 04, 2010 by Debra

The kabacha is roasted plain with just a pinch… the tiniest pinch of brown sugar!  Can you see the puckering of the skin from the heat.  I thought it looked interesting.  The chicken is the  simmered with my newest discovery “smoked salt”!  The recipe is here. 

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Mini Tuna Burger Snack Bento Box Comments Off

Posted on November 06, 2009 by Debra

mini_bento_boxBento boxes can come in all sizes and this box or “side car”, as I usually call it when it’s filled with a side salad or fruit, is an example of how to transform any “onesy twosy” leftovers into a mini bento snack.  And this little guy contains a tuna burger… so it’s not for me, it’s for a hungry Saba Man.   Eating this bento box along with a musubi makes for a balanced midnight snack!

Salmon Wraps and Asparagus Bento Box 4

Posted on November 02, 2009 by Debra
Salmon Wraps and Roasted Vegetables with Quail Eggs

Salmon Wraps and Roasted Vegetables with Quail Eggs

Salmon is the main course in today’s featured bento box. Wrapped up in whole wheat tortillas with a “special sauce”… okay it’s just mayo, but I told Saba Man that it’s special sauce just for fun.  Also in the box is asparagus roasted with olive oil, garlic, sea salt and cracked pepper.  The sweet potato and goat cheese puree is a frequent bento box item; it tastes like autumn to me.  It’s a stick-to-your-ribs kind of goodness.  The recipe is described in a previous post , but this time I omitted the butter.

Before and After Quail Eggs

Before and After Quail Eggs

Kabocha is the other roasted vegetable, added not only for it’s deliciousness, but for  color and visual interest. Those white spheres are really quail eggs!  Just for kicks and giggles, I molded them in my hands while they were still warm, manually shaping them into a round ball.   I just kept them in a bowl of hot water while I manipulated them.  If you want to give it a try, just use a light touch to avoid cracking.  Easy peasy.

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