Friday, April 29, 2011

Spring into Bento (and Chocolate Nests)

Today I made a spring themed bento with chocolate nests, and noodle nests, and egg chicks. I have a recipe for you too!, you can make your own Chocolate nests quickly and easily!
First up is my Fiance's bento. We both have the same lunch (except I have some orange slice in mine), but I always spend a little extra time on her bento to make it look nice.
  • Steak and Mixed Vegetables with Teriyaki Sauce
  • Cherry Tomatos
  • Garden Delight Pasta Nest
  • Hard Boiled Egg Chick (Sesame eyes, and Carrot beak)
  • Peep Bunny
  • Chocolate Nest (See below for details)
  • Strawberry
  • Pineapple
 My Chick is green with envy at all the people who can make their egg yolks come out yellow...

Chocolate Nests
What You'll Need:
  • 2 Tbsp Peanut Butter (190 calories)
  • 2 Tbsp Milk Chocolate Chips (140 Calories)
  • 1/2 Cup Fiber One cereal (60 Calories)
  • 8 Mini Cadbury Eggs (126 Calories)
Microwave peanut butter and chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl for 50 seconds, Stirring every 10 seconds to evenly combine and make sure it doesn't burn. Add cereal and stir together to coat evenly. Divide into 4 portions (about 1 Tbsp each) Drop tablespoonfuls onto wax paper and form into nest shapes. Add two Candy eggs, and let sit in the refrigerator until hardened.
Take out and enjoy!

Could use other candy eggs instead of Cadbury, such as Robin Eggs,or Reese's Pieces eggs. And you can also make this without peanut butter if you have an allergy.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Fruit Bento

We were going to bring leftovers for lunch, but I wanted to make a bento, so I made a bento of fruit for me and my fiance to share. I love fresh fruit, and since I've been buying fresh fruit and cutting it at home both me and my fiance have been eating a ton of fruit now. It's just soo good we can't stop. lol
  • Orange Slices
  • Pineapple Chunks
  • Cantaloupe Cubes
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Two picks so we can eat without using our hands

Here it is all ready to go. The two smaller containers have our lunch. It's home made Beans and Rice with Ground Beef.
Kidney Beans, Black Beans, Ground Beef, Brown Rice, Crushed Tomatoes, Garlic, Red Pepper Flakes, Ground Cumin, Black Pepper, Chili Powder, Oregano, Italian Seasoning Blend, Paprika, and a few other spices, I can't remember them all right now. I was going to add some chopped onion and pepper but we were all out. But it turned out yummy anyway.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Make Your Own Tacos Bento

We had Taco salad last night for dinner, and so I used the leftovers for bento today. The Homemade taco meat consists of Ground Turkey, Black Beans, Ground Cumin, Black Pepper, Garlic Powder, Oregano, Ground Red Pepper Flakes, Chili Powder, and Paprika. I also added a tiny pinch of salt.
  • Two Whole Wheat Pita Breads
  • Shredded Fat Free Cheddar Cheese
  • Taco Meat
  • Spinach
  • Strawberries
  • Pinapple
  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Annie's Gummy Bunny Snacks (Berry Patch)
  • Whole Wheat Pita Bread
  • Spinach
  • Taco Meat
  • Cucumber
  • Tomato
  • 100 Calorie Pack Wholly Guacamole
  • Salsa
  • Strawberry
  • Pineapple
  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Annie's Gummy Bunny snacks (Sunny Citrus)
I didn't eat my bunny snacks because I was so full, and I was so full because I cut up the pineapple and the cantaloupe today, and I can't help myself from snacking on the fresh ripe fruit. It's so juicy and sweet. So I gorged myself on that fruit, that's why I only packed a little bit of fruit in my bento.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Peep S'mores

Last week, my brother shared a website with me where someone made peep s'mores. They looked yummy so I decided to try them out as well. Too bad the pictures didn't come out very good. But they tasted very yummy, so that makes up for it. lol
First of all I gathered the ingredients I wanted to use.
  • Two Low Fat Graham Crackers (110 calories)
  • Two Peeps (56 Calories)
  • 1 Lindt Chocolate Bunny (60 Calories)

 I broke the chocolate bunny in half and got the graham crackers ready for the heat.
You can see the chocolate starting to melt, but the peeps don't look any different yet.
Here, the chocolate is completely melted and the peeps started to smoke on top so I got ready to take them out.
You can kind of see the toasted sugar on top of the peeps, I was careful taking them out of the toaster oven because sugar burns are the worst.
The sugar was crispy where it melted, almost like a Crème brûlée, but not nearly as fancy or sophisticated.
Here they are, ready for the taste test. The peeps don't seem to be very melty, but the chocolate is super melty and creamy.
The peeps were warm and a little gooey, but not as gooey as a regular marshmallow. The chocolate was delicious, but what else would you expect from Lindt? lol
All in all it was pretty tasty, but I wasn't too impressed with the peeps. Maybe I should try them in the microwave next time... that way I might be able to see them blow up a little. The crispy sugar was an interesting touch to the classic S'more.

 Now you can Peep Some More!!!!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Quick and Light bentos

I hope Everyone had a good holiday. I spent so much time with family, it was fabulous. My mother recently came back from a cruise she went on with my Aunts and Uncles. She brought me back some beautiful earrings and a beautiful bracelet from St. Lucias. I can't wait to have a nice occation to wear them. I also got to try on my dress for my sister's wedding. It fit great, and when we have the fitting The tailor will only have to take it in a little. So that's good news. I had a great time and I ate waaaaay too much. I was so full of food that I still felt full this morning when I woke up. Needless to say I am eating light today, so I only made myself a small bento for lunch.
Sorry for the crappy quality. I didn't spend much time on bentos today. I was busy with work and such, but I still made bento, so there. lol
  • Mini Whole Wheat Pita sandwich (100 calorie pack of Wholly Guacamole, baby spinach, cucumbers, baby carrots, and tomato) This was really good, I loved the guacamole and I plan on getting it again. Yum!
  • Apple Slices
  • Peep (I'll be eating lot's of candy the next few weeks. lol)
  • Strawberry
Not too pretty, but I got all the colors, and it tasted really yummy.
Next is my fiance's bento. She's been sick with a cold, so she has a quick and easy bento too.
  • Hummus
  • Whole Wheat Pita (These are really great, good size and only 45 calories each)
  • Baby Carrots and Celery Sticks
  • Apple Rabbits
  • Strawberries
I didn't get any yellow in this bento. :/ I should have given her one of my peeps, but she didn't want one. Oh well.
Hopefully tomorrow's bentos will be a lot prettier. I'll try to dress them up nicer.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Earth Day Vegetarian Bento

Happy Earth Day!!!
My fiance and I were too busy for bento lunch so I figured we could make bento for dinner instead. And instead of making them both myself, I showed my fiance how to pack a bento box and we each made our own. I'm so proud with how they came out. They look really good.
This is my fiance's bento that she packed all by herself. I'm so proud. Not bad at all for a first (second actually) time. I am proud of myself too for showing her how to pack it.
Here's Mine! So Yummy!
  • Morningstar 'chicken' buffalo nuggets, in a bed of Spinach
  • Hard Boiled Egg (The last two of the ones we dyed last Sunday)
  • Baby Carrots and Celery Sticks
  • Container of Light Ranch dressing for dipping
  • Strawbeeries
  • Cantaloupe (my fiance didn't want any)
  • Fresh Pineapple (sooo good and sweet, I can't stop eating it)
  • Watermelon
  • Blueberries
So yummy. The bento's a re a bit larger then I usually make, but that's because it's for dinner instead of lunch. We also ate vegetarian foods to be more environmentally friendly for Earth Day.

Now since it is Earth Day I have a suggested website for you. It's a list of 101 ways to heal the Earth, and has a lot of little suggestions that are easy to do to help save the planet. 101 Ways To Heal The Earth
What have you done to help the planet today?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Fast Snack/Lunch Bentos

Thursdays are my busiest days, so I don't usually get to make bento unless I have something easy and fast to put together. We had some leftovers to bring with us, but I also put together some snacks and sides for me and my fiance to eat along with the leftovers. I ended up packing more then either of us could eat, but oh well.
  • Hard Boiled Egg (My fiance had for breakfast in the car)
  • Light Babybel Cheese (Fiance's)
  • Hummus (in the pink container, my fiance had this as lunch and snack)
  • Baby Carrots and Celery for the hummus

  • Banana slices (Mine)
  • Blueberries (Shared)
  • Crunchy Peanut Butter (Mine)
  • Unsalted Saltines (Mine)
  • Orange Slices (Mine)
  • Strawberries (Shared)
  • Late July Cookies (Shared)
 So that is that for our quick snacks and lunch. I tried to make it a bit pretty with the little time I had, and I used one of the eggs I dyed last Sunday to add a little more decoration.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

2 Years Making Bento

So I was looking at my old bento pictures on my flickr account, and realized that the first bento I ever made was uploaded to Flickr on March 15 2009. That means I have been making bentos for a little over 2 years. I also noticed how much better my bentos look now then from when I started.
I tried to get the picture of my first bento so I could put it on my blog, but for some reason I cannot take it off my accout to put it here. So I will do the next best thing.

To see a picture of my first ever bento please click here.
To see a picture of my bento 2 years later please click here. (Sorry it's blurry)
To see my newest bento please click here.

Check out my pictures to see all of my bentos new and old. Flickr phototstream

Bunny Food Bento

So my fiance said my Egg salad looked so good, so she asked me to make that for lunch today. But since I had already had that I made egg salad for my fiance, and I had Rabbit Food. I say rabbit food because that's what some of my friends refer to vegetables.
  • Hard Boiled Egg (made into a chick with a carrot beak and sesame seed eyes)
  • Light Ranch Dressing (in the green container)
  • Grapes
  • Baby Carrots (with a bunny popping out of the pile)
  • Celery sticks
  • Light Babybel cheese (With a flower cutout and spinach 'leaves')
  • Cantaloupe
  • Strawberries
  • Peep
  • Aged Cheddar Pirate's Booty
All packed in my other new Piggy bento box. It's super cute, and comes with little piggy chopsticks. I love it!
  • Egg Salad Sandwich (With the wax flower cutout from my cheese, and Spinach accents. I also have two bunnies peeking out of the spinach bushes)
  • Celery sticks
  • Baby carrots
  • Grapes
  • Strawberry
  • Hummus (for dipping the rabbit food in)
This one is packed in my piggy face bento box that I used yesterday. I find that it's a good shape for the sandwich bread I use, so expect to see more sandwiches packed in this bento box.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Egg Salad Sandwich Bento

I used one of my new Piggy Bento boxes today, and to continue with the Easter/Spring themed bentos I made Egg Salad, and used a flower cookie cutter to put a flower cutout in the toast, and in the babybel cheese. I also added a peep for dessert, and some brightly colored fruit.
  • Egg Salad Sandwich (1 hard boiled egg, 1 tbsp low fat mayo, 1 tsp mustard, 2 baby carrots chopped, 1 small stack of celery chopped, black pepper, flax seed, mixed and served on spinach and a toasted whole wheat deli flat)
  • Veggie chips
  • Babybel light cheese with flower cutout
  • Peep for dessert
  • 1/4 of an Orange sliced (he rest was my snack)
  • Grapes
  • Strawberries
Isn't my new bento box cute? To read more about it and see the other box I got, go here.
Oh, the hardboiled egg I used for the egg salad had a pink shell. I thought it was fitting for a pink piggy bento box, although you don't see any of that color in the egg salad.

Piggy Bento Boxes!!!

My friend Julie gave me two new bento boxes yesterday. And they had me litterally jumping up and down because they were both Piggy bento boxes. I LOVE pigs, and I LOVE bento, and I have wanted a pig bento box since I started bentoing. Unfortunately they don't sell any pig bento boxes around here, but Julie is so awesome and she ordered them online for me.
It was a wonderful surprise, and I am still super excited today.
Both are two tiered boxes with bands to keep the tiers together in transit.
Aren't they the cutest?!
 Side View, of the cute details.
I love the adorable piggy face
  • Two Tiered bento box
  • Elastic strap to keep it together
  • Top tier has a tight fitting lid to keep liquids in place
  • Dishwasher and Microwave safe without the lids (but I'm not going to chance it.)
  • Great detail
PinPin Bento Box features a family of pigs having a party
  • Two Tiered Bento box
  • Inner lid has a pair of Chopsticks
  • Top tier has a divider inside
  • Bottom tier has tight lid, but does not seem liquid proof
  • Elastic band to hold everything together
  • Great detail
  • Silly 'Lost in Translation' phrases like "Shannon Good" and "PinPin's Swuzzy Dinner" and "Good to Eat" and "Happy Animal". Well, not all of them are lost in translation, but I figured I'd put them all up.
 Side Details of the two boxes. I love that the decorations seem to be all over the box and not just on top.

I can't wait to use them. I only have to make bento for myself today because my fiance's mother, and my fiance are taking her niece out to see the movie 'Hop' and go out to lunch. So I'll make myself something easy and tasty. Now I just have to pick which bento box to use first.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Which Came First...

.....The Chicken Pot sticker or the Hard Boiled Egg?
I'm starting my Easter/Spring/Bunny themes Bentos this week. Yesterday was Palm Sunday, and my fiance's family celebrates Easter on that day, so we have lots of hard boiled eggs. My fiance and I dyed eggs with the kids, and now we have a dozen eggs to go through this week. So expect to see them in everything. lol
This one is my pride a joy, a Rainbow Striped egg. I messed up on the stripes a little, but it was fun making it anyway.

I also made a breakfast bento today. It's more of the same, because I eat very similar breakfasts every day.
  • Yoplait Very Vanilla light yogurt
  • Heart shaped flax seed
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Newman's Own Cinnamon fiber flakes
And finally our lunch bentos
My fiance's bento and my bento are the same, but look a little bit different.
  • Chicken Potstickers
  • Hard boiled egg
  • Spinach
  • Cantaloupe
  • Strawberry
  • Flower cutout Babybel
  • Annie's Chocolate and Cinnamon Bunny Grahams
  • Green Peep

Friday, April 15, 2011

Snack Bento for Two

I have been really busy the past week, and I haven't really had a chance to make bento lunches. My fiance's mother is home from work, and she has commandeered the kitchen to do all the holiday baking. My fiance's family celebrates Easter on Palm Sunday, so that means this Sunday we will have all her family over.
I got to do the spring cleaning, but since she's making a huge mess in the kitchen, I'll have to clean that too.
Anyway, Because I've been so busy and I don't get to use the kitchen like normal, I didn't have a chance to make bento lunch, but I didn't want to leave all my blog readers without something, so I made me and my fiance a nice big snack bento to share.
All easy stuff that we had around the house, but it's better then nothing.
  • Strawberries (Shared)
  • Cantaloupe (Shared)
  • Late July Organic Peanut butter Cracker sandwiches (Shared)
  • Chocolate Cheerios (Mine)
  • Veggie Chips (Shared)
  • Annie's Chocolate Bunny Grahams (Fiance's)
  • Annie's Sour cream and Onion Bunnies (Fiance's)
It was very tasty, but I think I ended up putting too much in. I was full after eating my share, and I logged the calories. Higher then I wanted it to be, but that's because I put a lot of processed foods in (granted, they were healthier then other options... but they are still processed foods).

I am also not happy with the colors. I ate all the green beans out of the veggie chips, so I didn't have and green to put into the bento. I should have used a green cup to hold some of the snacks. but too late now. Oh well.
I am hoping that after this crazy family get together, things will calm down and go back to normal. Or at least get less stressful.
One thing I like to do to beat the stress is go for a walk. Last night I went for a walk, and as I was getting close to home, I decided to keep walking... I ended up walking 5 miles and I felt like I could have gone more, but it was getting dark and chilly.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Breakfast & Lunch bentos

I made myself a quick Breakfast Bento this morning. Basically the same thing I had the last time I made a breakfast bento.
  • Yoplait Strawberry Yogurt Light (6oz can for 100 calories)
  • Milled Flax Seed (1/2 tbsp for 15 calories)
  • Blueberries (20 berries for 15 calories)
  • Newman's Own Sweet Enough Cinnamon Fiber Flakes (1/2 cup for 60 calories)
  • Strawberry (3 calories)
All together it's 194 Calories and pretty yummy. I don't really like Strawberry Yogurt, but it was one of the only flavors we have left and my fiance hasn't been eating them.

Next comes our yummy lunches. I used leftovers from last night's dinner. I made a chicken casserole and Mashed cauliflower. The mashed cauliflower was soooooo delicious, and I couldn't stop eating it. Sooo good. I made the casserole with Boneless Chicken Breast, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Spinach, V8 Broccoli Soup, Cream of Mushrooms Soup, and Low Sodium Chicken Broth... as well as some spices and garlic.
It turned out really yummy, and I'm glad I saved some for today's lunch.
  • Mashed Cauliflower
  • Chicken Broccoli Casserole
  • Strawberry and Cantaloupe
  • Late July Peanut butter sandwich crackers and a Late July Sandwich cookie
  • Mini Babybel Light with heart cutout
My Fiance got the same thing as me, but a bit more.
Wish I had planned ahead a bit more before I started packing it. The yellow box and the bland colored food just look blah. Oh well.

Monday, April 11, 2011

New Bento Accessories

Saturday I was at one of my friend's birthday parties and who would of though I would recieve a gift? Anyway, you may remember my post last month about getting new bento boxes from my friend who went to Japan? Well there were a few other things she got me but she wasn't able to find. But this weekend she brought one of the presents for me. :)
Natural Lunch Time condiment boxes! 
They match the boxes she already gave me perfectly. I can't wait to use them, but I have to plan a bento that needs a dip or a dressing so I can use the new condiment boxes. I could also use them for a small dessert like a pudding or cookies, or something like that.
Ohhhh, I'm super excited!!!
Here they are, fresh out of the package! So cute! They seem a bit big for salad dressing, so I think using them for dips like hummus or ranch dip would be a better idea. I could also put some peanut butter in there and dip pretzels or graham crackers in. Hmm, oh the possibilities.
These each have tight fitting lids that seem to be liquid tight, but I probably won't have anything too liquidy in them so that shouldn't be a problem. I also think they are 80ml each, but I'm not sure. I couldn't really read what it said on the bottom of the boxes, but I'm pretty sure it said 80ml.

Thanks Alysse! I love the new condiment boxes!

Sunday, April 10, 2011


So my friend Julie took me and my fiance out for a fun day of walking and picnic and kite flying. And she made us each a bento to eat on our picnic. It was super tasty and we all had a ton of fun.

Here is our picnic spread. Fresh Strawberries (very sweet and delicious), Fresh Whipped Cream to dip the strawberries in, Baby Carrots, Ranch Dressing for the carrots. Mint Milano Cookies, Veggie Chips, Cheese Sticks, Water, and Apple Juice boxes.

It was sooooo good, but I ended up eating too much. lol. But we walked around a lot and we also flew kites in the park.
It was a beautiful day. Overcast all day long, but the weather was nice, and I only got cold when we were on top of the windy hill to fly kites. My fiance is so chivalrous and let me wear her sweatshirt.

Here is a closeup of my bento lunch
Nice and bright, lots of color too! Great job for a first attempt at a bento (without really attempting to making it a bento, it just worked out that way),

Thank you Julie for the wonderful day! I can't wait for more days like this. I'm hoping to do a hanami (cherry blossom viewing) picnic bento once the trees around here bloom.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Surprise Bentos

I didn't think I would have enought time to make bentos for lunch, but when I was fixing lunch I realized how much extra time I had, and I decided to put the food into the box all pretty like. lol
I made my fiance Mac and Cheese with Octodogs.
I love how the Octodogs became all lined up so nicely, when I wasn't trying to make them look like that.
  • Annie's Organic Shells and White Cheddar
  • 6 Octodogs in a bed of Spinach
  • Large Strawberry
  • Cantaloupe and Blueberries
I made a snack bento for my lunch because all the foods I was craving made a great snack, though it was filling enough for lunch.
  • Ants on a log (Celery, Crunchy Peanut Butter, and Raisins)
  • Banana Slices
  • Cantaloupe and Blueberries
  • Two yummy Strawberries

Breakfast Bento

Well, I am anticipating that today will be a busy day, so I don't think I'll be able to make a lunch bento. So Instead I made a breakfast bento for myself. My fiance is still sleeping, so there is only one bento. but I took a picture of it with the sun shining into the window. So it's all natural light.
I also tried to be more artistic with my picture taking, instead of taking the picture straight down onto the food.
  • Yoplait Light Yogurt Blueberry Patch (6oz container for 100 calories)
  • Fiber One Honey Clusters Cereal (1/4 cup for 40 calories)
  • Strawberries (3 large strawberries sliced for 17 calories)
  • Milled Flax Seed (1 tsp for about 12 calories)
That makes it about 169 Calories, 34g Carbs, 1g Fat, and 7g Protein

I love the light purple color of the yogurt. I usually have the Yoplait Light Very Vanilla Yogurt, but I wanted some extra color in the picture so I had blueberry instead. Both are tasty, but I think the vanilla is the best flavor of them all.
Do you have a favorite flavor?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

BBQ Pork Bento

I made BBQ pork chops last night for dinner, and I saved two for today's bentos. I also made Red Cabbage Coleslaw, and it came out so good. I took lots of pictures because it was so pretty, and I wanted to share them with my blog readers.
First I chopped up some Red Cabbage (I rinsed it really well because the cabbage was sandy). Then I chopped up some baby carrots and some broccoli. Here it is all mixed together. It's so pretty. I love the bright colors.
Then I made the dressing. I don't like the creamy coleslaw with the dressing made from mayo, yuck! So I made mine differently.
It consisted of Apple Cider Vinegar, Olive Oil, Celery Salt, Black Pepper, and Crushed Red Pepper Flakes.
I poured the dressing onto the slaw and mixed it up.
Then I let it sit for about an hour. The longer you let it sit the better it tastes because the flavors start to meld together. Here it is after it sat for a bit.
And here is a picture of my dinner, the BBQ Pork Chops, Baked Beans, Corn, and homemade Coleslaw.
Now, here comes the yummy bentos!!! I am very happy with how they came out. I added a chreey tomato for contrast, and to round out the colors a bit. I also added some fresh spinach. I like to use Spinach under my foods to help keep the bento box easy to clean, and it also addes some filling fiber and nutrition to the bento lunch.
This one is my Fiance's Bento, and the next one is mine.
YUM YUM YUM! The coleslaw was even better today then it was yesterday because the flavors went all throughout the slaw and made it super tasty. I will definitely be making this meal again. I can't wait for the warm weather so we can start grilling again. There will be more grilled foods in the bento boxes this summer.