For More Kitchen Tips Go here.
I just posted about bento here.
Be sure to read the first post for more frugal ideas!
This post I would like to share how to make bento lunches frugally. Now before I get started, let me tell you, there are tons of cute little character boxes, shapes etc . that you can find on Ebay. The problem is that the main reason I love bento: is 1. it is cheaper than eating out. 2. it is healthier . Hence, Buying all that stuff makes it so Non- frugal :). Although cuteness is a reason for some, it is not my main focus. I do admit to wanting some egg molds really bad. You can get them on Ebay. I have done my homework and have learned a few tricks along the way.
You can use cookie cutters to cute cute sandwiches, or to mold rice into really cute shapes, using plastic wrap or just plain balls !:
You can make Jello in cute shapes buy using silicone Ice cube molds or candy molds.
Here is a photo of my free or cheap Bento items:
The small glad ware dishes are used inside the larger container.
The Muffin cups are paper dividers.
Across the front from L to R is empty Crystal Light containers- Great to pack empty - for picnics I use these as disposable sauce dipping containers- no need to keep them, I have an abundance of them . The small bottle with a red lid is a empty spice bottle that I use for salt/pepper , A medicine cup form cough syrup also used for dipping, Food color bottles for soy sauce. ( Just pour sauce into a small cup and draw up like a dropper. next is a vanilla extract bottle and the pink silverware case was a pencil case from a Burger King happy meal! I also have found flat tooth brush travel holders that would work!
Now for Ice and drinks:
Of Course you would want a thermos for hot drinks and soups.
Keep those water bottles to refill,
Use Plastic jars like Mayo or Peanut Butter, Buy a small rubbermaid bottle .
They Crystal light tube I use for food like chips, crackers etc and should be in the other picture (oops) I also use these for damp towels to wipe my hands! Or just carry sanitizer wipes or a small sanitizer bottle.
Not shown: My reusable Blue ice packs :)
Now pack it all inside your bento bag: In My case I have used old gift bags, Wal-mart sacks,insulated bags and a freebie canvas bag. Traditional bento ether use a bandanna type cloth or a drawstring bento bag :
Here are some post of other folk's frugal bento ideas:
Freaking tasty Bento (warning: Some Bad language)
Bento Box-A great site that explains it all so well
If you want to see the "Real" bento stuff look here.
Take a look at these Bento Lunches- True art !