photo credit: Beau Coffron/Lunchboxdad.com
photo credit: Beau Coffron/Lunchboxdad.com

 

Lunches which look almost too good to eat may be the trick to getting those lunch boxes back empty.  We've got tips on simple ways to pack meals that score high in looks, taste and nutrition. Fox News Radio's Lilian Huang Woo speaks to experts Everyday Bento author Wendy Copely, Laura Fuentes of Momables.com and Supergluemom.com and Beau Coffron of Lunchboxdad.com. on building lunches which will be the envy of the cafeteria.

 

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Bento Elves  photo credit: Maki Ogawa.
Bento Elves
photo credit: Maki Ogawa.

photo credit: Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing.
photo credit: Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing.

Laura Fuentes, Founder of MOMables.com
Laura Fuentes, Founder of MOMables.com

STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE TO

The Dinosaur Bento Box from Everyday Bento

 

 photo credit: Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing.

 photo credit: Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing.

photo credit: Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing.

Thinking Outside the Box... Best-selling EasyLunchBoxes with some non-sandwich ideas.

photo credit: Easylunchboxes.com
photo credit: Easylunchboxes.com

Lunchbox Dad Despicable Me 2 Minion Lunch

 

Ingredients:

--1 banana cut in half with the ends cut off

--Blue and black markers

--2 pieces of Nori (dried seaweed) cut in the shape of goggles as shown

--3 small circles of white cheese for eyes

--3 small pieces of raisins for eyes

--1 piece of lettuce for the background

--1 slice of whole wheat bread cut in four squares

--1 handful of trail mix

--1 serving of grilled chicken cut into strips

--1 slice of cheese cut into squares

--Cheese cut into "ME 2" as shown

--Tool shaped stickers for decoration, if desired

 

Directions:

1.  Draw blue overalls on the bananas.  They are shaped like an "H".  Wrap nori goggles around them first, then place white cheese on top, with the raisin pieces put on after that.  Moisten the nori on the back to get it to stay on the banana.  You may use a piece of toothpick to hold each eye in place if you choose.  Finish the bananas by drawing black hair with a marker and mouths as shown.

 

2.  Place lettuce in your container.  Put the banana minions on top and place the pieces of bread above them.

 

3.  Use a side dish for the trail mix (I used almonds and dried cranberries).  Arrange the cheese letters and number to spell out "ME 2."  For simplicity you may use tool stickers in the place of these letters.

 

4.  In another side dish alternative chicken strips and cheese.  Stick tool stickers to toothpicks and insert in lunch wherever you want to decorate.

- See more at: http://www.lunchboxdad.com/2013/08/simple-summer-despicable-me-2-lunch.html#sthash.AFWTwMhn.dpuf

Ingredients:
--1 banana cut in half with the ends cut off
--Blue and black markers
--2 pieces of Nori (dried seaweed) cut in the shape of goggles as shown
--3 small circles of white cheese for eyes
--3 small pieces of raisins for eyes
--1 piece of lettuce for the background
--1 slice of whole wheat bread cut in four squares
--1 handful of trail mix
--1 serving of grilled chicken cut into strips
--1 slice of cheese cut into squares
--Cheese cut into "ME 2" as shown
--Tool shaped stickers for decoration, if desired
 
Directions:
1.  Draw blue overalls on the bananas.  They are shaped like an "H".  Wrap nori goggles around them first, then place white cheese on top, with the raisin pieces put on after that.  Moisten the nori on the back to get it to stay on the banana.  You may use a piece of toothpick to hold each eye in place if you choose.  Finish the bananas by drawing black hair with a marker and mouths as shown.
 
2.  Place lettuce in your container.  Put the banana minions on top and place the pieces of bread above them.
 
3.  Use a side dish for the trail mix (I used almonds and dried cranberries).  Arrange the cheese letters and number to spell out "ME 2."  For simplicity you may use tool stickers in the place of these letters.
 
4.  In another side dish alternative chicken strips and cheese.  Stick tool stickers to toothpicks and insert in lunch wherever you want to decorate.

- See more HERE

 PRINCESS BENTO

 

Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing
Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing

 

BUTTERFLY BENTO

Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing
Wendy Thorpe Copley and Everyday Bento, courtesy of Tuttle Publishing

Butterfly Bento

INGREDIENTS

Chicken Salad (see recipe below)

Apple

Butterfly crackers

Green grapes

Havarti cheese

Cheddar cheese

Raspberries

 

EQUIPMENT

Single-tier bento box

Round silicone baking cup

Medium butterfly cutter

Toothpicks

Small flower cutter

Extra-small circle cutter

Flower-stem picks

Fork to eat the salad

 

Chicken Salad

INGREDIENTS

Cooked chicken, finely chopped

Apple, finely chopped

Celery, finely chopped

Almonds, finely chopped

Mayonnaise

 

Mix the chicken, apple, celery, and almonds until well combined. Add the mayonnaise to taste and mix well.

 

  1. Spoon the Chicken Salad into the silicone cup and place it in the top left corner of the bento box.
  2. Cut a thin slice from the side of the apple. Cut a butterfly shape from the slice with a cutter. If desired, use one of the anti-browning techniques on page 65 to keep the apple looking fresh. Place the apple butterfly on top of the Chicken Salad cup.
  3. Stack the butterfly crackers in the lower left-hand corner of the bento box.
  4. Thread three grapes onto each of three toothpicks. Place the grape sticks in a single layer in the upper right corner of the box.
  5. Cut two flower shapes from the Havarti cheese and two small circles from the cheddar. Insert the flower- stem picks into the flower shapes. Place the cheese circles in the middle of the flowers. Put the flowers on top of the grapes.
  6. Fill the remaining space with the raspberries

 

 

 

Overnight Oats photo credit: Laura Fuentes/ MOMables.com
Overnight Oats photo credit: Laura Fuentes/ MOMables.com and SuperGlueMom.com

 

 A MONTH'S WORTH OF IDEAS

30 Days of Lunchbox Meals courtesy of FamilyFreshCooking.com