Bento Boxes for Local Food Lunches

Try a cute and tasty way to eat healthy this school year!

This week’s Making Ripples column in the Free Weekly is about my favorite kind of sustainable lunch – the bento box!  I decided a few months ago to learn how to make these, at a basic but attractive level.  I ascribe to the policy of creating bentos primarily for environmental and nutritional, not cute, reasons.  The cute part just draws me into the culture of portable, fresh foods in a reusable container. 🙂

cuteIf you’d like a helpful book on bento box lunches, the two that helped me most were the Yum-yum Bento Box: Fresh Recipes for Adorable Lunches and The Just Bento Cookbook: Everyday Lunches to Go.  For more guidance, I’ve enrolled for FREE in this online bento box creation class! Become a student here.  You can go at your own pace, which for me is whenever I get the chance to think about bentos and put some together.  Slow and steady, right?  I committed to packing at least two bento boxes per week, on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Having that plan helps me not forget about eating healthier lunches – today, for instance, I was blindsided by frozen french fries.  But tomorrow I will return to vegan sushi!

For more resources on creating bento box lunches for you and your family:

Check out Ozark Natural Foods’ Back to School Produce Checklist by Pauline

Mindless Veggie Eating by Eve Adamson, Stronger Together Co-op.

Bento tutorial videos are common on YouTube – here is one on How to Make a Totoro Bento!

Wikipedia entry on bentos.

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