Back to School Week : Beginner’s Bento

It’s back to school week in my household! So the posts this week will have a bit of a theme. There will be a few giveaways sprinkled here and there too!


Today started the first day of Calamity Jane going to full day preschool. And across the land, or at least in my household, a sigh of relief echoes. So with all my new found free time I’ve decided to start making bento lunches for her. Crazy right? But there’s a method to my madness. The girls enter kindergarten next year and I hate the expense and unhealthiness of school lunches. So I figure if I make them fun now that they will want to take them instead of buy, at least for a few years.


The Details:

-They don’t refrigerate or heat the lunches at the preschool. I am considering cool packs but for now am looking for stuff that either doesn’t need to be kept cool or can defrost in the morning.

-She gets on the bus at eight and eats lunch around eleven thirty.

-There is a kid with peanut and tree nut allergies in her classroom so that limits what I can put in. I am waiting to hear back on whether or not we can send almonds and/or legume based proteins like hummus or beans.


The Equipment:

Unfortunately we don’t have the resources of a larger city so I have had to improvise.  I’ve hit two international grocery stores but no dice. There’s still one left to try so fingers crossed. I did find two smaller bento style boxes for $5 each at old Navy that will get me started. I also bought a dinosaur sandwich cutter. These along with the cookie cutters I own are keeping me in the bento business for now. I also read this beginner’s guide and am considering ordering some of the things she suggests. Next on my to buy list is silicone cupcake liners and food markers (if I can find some that are not laden with food dyes.)


The Results

I’ve only made two bentos so far but I like how they have turned out. Calamity Jane saw the one I made for tomorrow and already seems excited about eating it!

So… thoughts?

Am I insane for doing this?

Any bets on how long I will last?




  1. Great job! I have 2 kids in school and have been packing them bento boxes for 3 years now. It gets easier (healthier and cheaper too!). Your bento lunches will make your daughter the envy of her classmates 🙂 Keep it up!!

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