Food & Cooking

Simple Bento

When we lived in Japan, I used to make our lunches for the following day every night after dinner. I haven’t done that as much since we’ve been home-must have just been one of those things that got lost without a regular routine for a while there. Despite my lack of keeping up on lunches as of late, I’ve started to get back into meal planning, and I’ve decided the lunch-making habit would be a good one to start up again, too.


Tonight I just threw together a very simple bento with some random things I had in the house: peanut butter on celery sticks, cheese cubes & a couple of cherry tomatoes, baby carrot sticks, leftover pork chops that my mother-in-law made (amazing, by the way!), saltine crackers, and a boiled egg. Lots of color–which is always important!–, lots of variety, nutrients, and protein. (I was very excited to use some of the things I stocked up on before leaving Japan!) Should keep me nice and full!

What are some of your easy lunch ideas?



What’s in that bag?


My very fashionable 100 yen store bag

Since we’re leaving Japan very, very soon (about a month to go!), I decided to pick up a few things we never got around to buying: a gyoza (pot sticker) mold, nice bento boxes, bento reusable goodies… The day I bought them was the same day I met my coworker for lunch, and so you can see some souvenirs she gave me as well: a Rilakkuma duster, some pastry snacks, yuzu jelly, and lemon drink mix.



My bento is the top one with flowers, and Chad’s is the checkered one on the bottom

I made bentos for lunch on Monday in our new boxes using some nifty side-dish packs, veggie furikake, or seasoning, and a few other things. Turned out great! Yum, yum!


Nifty Side-Dish Packs (Top: Spinach mix, Lotus mix, and Edamame Seaweed mix; Bottom: Crab Cream Croquettes)


Veggie Furikake


Our beautiful bentos!

I once read that Japanese people believe a dish is healthiest if there are at least 5 different colors of food. I don’t always make bentos, but no matter what I make I always try to include a variety of color. What do you like to pack in your lunches?