We pack lunches from home for my boys almost every day during the school year. It not only saves money, but it ensures that they are eating the things that they like. I don’t know about your school, but our school lunches definitely lack in the “tasty” department. The problem I had was finding ways to get creative with their lunches, instead of the same old sandwich, fruit, snack and a drink.
But they don’t have to fear this year, because I think I nailed it. I’d heard all about the Bento craze and wanted so badly to make creative and fun lunches for my boys over the past year. I just thought they were past that stage since they are on the older side, so I never did it. Then earlier this week, I said screw it. I’m going to show these boy what fun is and give them other lunch options at the same time.
So I grabbed a couple of blocks of cheese, some lunch meat, grapes and some Wonka Nerds. My boys love their chocolate milk, but I’m always afraid to pack any since they don’t get to keep their lunch bags cold. But I found these 10 packs of Nestle Nesquik Ready to Drink Flavored Milk in the snack aisle at Walmart, so I thought we’d give them a try. They’re shelf stable, so they don’t need refrigerated. A total win/win because now my boys can have their chocolate milk and I don’t have to worry about it going sour and upsetting their tummies! Just look at the kid’s face, he’s excited for some chocolate milk in his lunch!
I’m sure you’re probably wondering how to create a Bento lunch, but there really are no rules; just get creative! I used the following supplies and food for this one:
- 1 inch flower cookie cutter
- silicone cupcake liners
- square container with lid
- decorative toothpicks
- insulated lunchbag
- colby/jack cheese
- peperjack cheese
- roast beef
- oyster crackers
- Wonka Nerds candy
The Bento lunch process really isn’t too time consuming at all. First, you’ll have to cut a chunk off the cheese, just a tad larger that your cookie cutter. Then you’ll want to slice it into 3 pieces. Next, position your cookie cutter, push down and voila, instant decorative cheese! I was able to get a total of 6 pieces out of each chunk.
Next up was the meat. I probably could have gotten more creative with this step, but I just wasn’t really sure of what else to do with it. I’m sure I’ll come up with better ideas over time. I folded each slice of meat in half, then rolled it end to end and stuck a decorative toothpick through it.
For the final steps, I took the lid off the little compartment that was already in my container and filled it with grapes. Then I added three silicone cupcake liners and filled one with cheese, another with meats and the other with crackers. Lastly, I placed in little fun size boxes of Wonka Nerds wherever they would fit.
I put them all in the lunch bag and we headed to the backyard for some lunch.
Big Bro had been waiting for a bottle of Nestle Nesquik since we found it at the store, so it was only natural that he go for a drink first.
Then he ate some grapes, a piece of cheese and reached for his favorite Strawberry Nerds.
He really enjoyed his lunch and didn’t think it was too “kiddish” at all. The boys want me to make more Bento style lunches and even threw in some great ideas of their own for next time!
You can see more ideas and recipes from other bloggers on the Nestle Flavorful Moments site.