Bento Box Art Re-Creates Our Fave Childhood Characters and More

Bento boxes are a great way to prepare lunches for our children. But that’s not the only purpose they serve. For one mom, bento box lunches was an outlet for her creativity.

Using Creativity to Combat Picky Eaters

Nikki Garcia is a Filipino mother who uses bento-making as a channel for her creative juices. She talked to Buzzfeed about her food creations, saying “I enjoy arts and crafts and all things creative, but with three kids, pottery, painting or scrapbooking is just not possible.”

Nikki says she has two eaty pickers. Moms will agree it’s always a challenge to prepare food for picky eaters. But through her creative bento box lunches, her children ate their food without any protest.

This mom thinks of bento lunch boxes as a painter’s blank canvas. “The possibilities are endless,” she says. But instead of brushes and paints, she has her cookie cutter, a sharp knife, and kitchen scissors as tools.

This creative mom considers the time she makes bento box lunches as her “me” time. Inspiration for her new creations come from Japanese kawaii characters or her kids’ current interests.

Food for the Eye and Stomach

Nikki “invents” every morning; and like most moms, tries to sneak veggies into her kids’ meals. Try to see if you can spot them in the images below.

Happy Halloween!

Obviously, the kids are fans of Bruce Lee. Hiya!

Bento 58 🍄 A snack-box for an extra life? A "one-up" for my no-longer kid brother, @spellhappy. I think our fondest childhood memories were spent in front of the Nintendo, when I would play for hours, and gave him a remote that was actually unplugged so he thought he was playing along 😂 ✌🏼 • • • Breaded chicken breast, bite-size caprese, steamed broccoli, scrambled egg and kimchi rice #Bento #bentoph #bentobox #bentobaon #charaben #kyaraben #kawaii #kawaiifood #kawaiibento #characterfood #characterbento #kidsmeal #bentoforkids #baon #foodie #nikkimbento #nintendo #mariobrothers #marioandluigi #plumbersbutt #oneup #extralife #classickid #90s #90skid #instafood #instagood #foodstagram #nomnomnom #yummy

A post shared by Nikki Garcia (@nikkimbento) on

Good enough to play with.

Kawabongga!

It’s Peppa Pig.

Hello Kitty in a Keroppi costume.

Mike and Sully.

Doraemon!

Cheesy Spongebob.

Don’t let anyone swipe this away.

Snoopy and Charlie Brown.

Clearly can’t get enough of Elmo.

Follow Nikki on Instagram to get updated on her latest bento box lunch creations.

How to Make Your Own Bento Box Lunches

If you’d like to create your own bento box lunches, here are the basic steps.

If you’d like to read rather than watch the instructions, tutorials can be found here and here (basic Japanese bento formula).

Bento making is quite doable. The ideal time to make them is in the morning. For your bento-making to be successful, remember to plan well, stock your pantry and freezer, have bento-ware on hand and ready to use, and prepare foods available at local and Asian groceries.

Half-Japanese, half-Australian blogger Jane advises us to prepare everything beforehand so all you have to do in the morning is assemble your bento box lunch. She says it only takes her less than five minutes.

Bento doesn’t have to consist of Japanese or Asian food alone. You can also create bento box lunches using Western food or a combination of Eastern and Western cuisines.

It’s also important to remember that bento-making is an art form in Japan. As such, it has rules. Get to know them so you can break them, except this one: your bento box has to look and taste good.

 


What kind of bento box will you create?


 Additional Images: Instagramnikkimbento

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Juvy Garcia
Juvy Garcia
Juvy is a freelance proofreader, copy editor and writer. A nice little nook with a good book would be ideal. But concocting plans for her next drawing or DIY project will suffice while she's still busy babysitting two daughters. Follow her on Twitter or connect with her on Google+.