Colorful Bento Ideas For Your Kids' Back-To-School Meal

As the new school year approaches in this new normal, kids may still feel the need to adjust to the new setup and environment of learning. They may feel lonely when they crave the company of their friends and schoolmates, especially during break times.

Break time is one of the things kids look forward to at school. It is when they get to do various activities that they want and enjoy their free time.

But now that the new normal limits the activities they can do during their break times, families must find alternative ways to keep their learning environment enjoyable even at home. This will help your kids stay encouraged and motivated to learn.

One way to spark your kids’ excitement for break times is by making sure you prepare and give them fun and enjoyable meals that they would look forward to.

You can make their break times exciting by elevating their meals and making fun and colorful bento boxes meals.

What is a bento box?

Originating from Japan, bento box is a concept of creating a one-portion meal in a single container or “box.” Traditionally, a Japanese bento box is used to carry visually appealing meals consisting of Japanese dishes that are also nutritious and delicious.

This has evolved in today’s time as moms prepare their family members’ meals in bento-style using modern and reusable containers. Not only is it convenient, but it makes up for a fun, organized, and visually pleasing meal with a combination of healthy and delicious food that their loved ones enjoy.

Even at home, you can make your kids’ meals fun and enjoyable. So we’ve listed down the certain type of foods that you can include in your kids’ bento box to make it nutritious, colorful, and fun. We’re also going to share a healthy sushi recipe to add an extra dose of excitement to your kids’ break time meal to keep them energized.

1. Fruits and Vegetables

Start by ensuring that your kids’ meal is healthy in a certain way. Add fruits that they like and a portion of vegetables that they will enjoy to keep their meal nutritious.

One factor in adding fruits and vegetables to your kids’ bento box is the added color. Fruits and vegetables come in different colors, and adding them into the bento box will make the meal visually appealing right off the bat.

Colors excite kids, and no matter what kind of food is served to them, they are more likely to engage with it and eat the meal if it is something they find fun and attractive. This is a good way to slip and sneak in healthy types of food into their meal to guarantee that they are getting enough and proper nutrients.

2. Their favorites

To ensure that your kids will enjoy their break time meal, make sure to include what they like to have or their favorite food to keep the fun in it. If you’re feeling a bit generous, you can add their favorite snacks or treats as well to keep them excited.

Whatever type of food your kids prefer, incorporating their favorites adds various choices to their meal. It also makes it a little more fun than usual. This will help elevate your kids’ enthusiasm for having a meal. It would add to why they can look forward to having and enjoying their break time in between academic learning.

3. Something new

Mix things up and try your best to serve them different foods from time to time.

The kids are more likely to look forward to their meals if you change things up and give them new yet still fun food that they will enjoy. This will spark their curiosity and help them get out of their comfort zone. It will teach them to try new things and be open to certain changes.

With that, we have prepared a healthy and exciting sushi recipe to keep your bento box meals authentic and amusing.

Here’s a healthy, different, but fun Bulgur Sushi recipe with two varieties that your kids (and even you and your family) can enjoy.

What you’ll need:

For Sushi Pilar:

  • 1 glass Fine Bulgur
  • 3 glasses hot water (to boil bulgur)
  • 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 coffee spoon of salt

For Tuna Sushi variety:

  • Canned tuna fish
  • Onions
  • Mayonnaise
  • Cucumber
  • Lettuce leaves

For Salmon Sushi variety:

  • Smoked Salmon
  • Avocado
  • Mayonnaise
  • Lettuce leaves

For rolling:

  • 2 leaves nori

For serving:

  • 1/2 glass soya sauce
  • 50g ginger pickle

Here’s how to do it:

  1. To prepare sushi pilaf, put 3 glasses of water into the pot and boil your fine bulgur within 15-20 minutes. Once done, drain it on a wire screen and mix your bulgur with rice vinegar, sugar, and salt until all the ingredients are well combined.
  2. To prepare tuna fish sushi, chop the onion in a very fine manner. Mix tuna fish with mayonnaise. Divide cucumber into 4 equal pieces longwise after peeling its bark. Wet your fingers with little water and splatter onto nori leaves.
  3. Place nori on your tray and lay about a centimeter of pilaf on top, making sure that about one third space of your nori leaf is empty.
  4. Lay your tuna fish on top of the pilaf, about two centimeters wide. Place a lettuce leaf on one side of the tuna and a piece of cucumber on the other before carefully rolling the nori leaf.
  5. For your salmon sushi variety, prepare your nori leaf and lay the pilaf sushi on top. Coat the pilaf with mayonnaise and finish it by topping your salmon after. Ensure that there is a space of about two centimeters between your salmon and pilaf to make the rolling of the leaf easier.
  6. Finish it by placing your avocado slices on top with a lettuce leaf before you roll it together.
  7. Place it into your kids’ bento box and serve with either soya sauce or ginger pickle.

As this is the standard recipe, feel free to omit, mix, or change the ingredients according to your kids’ preferences and style. Ensure that even though it is new, it will still be something that your kids will love and enjoy eating. Tweak the recipe according to your kids' liking, and this will make up for a new, good, and exciting meal for your kids.

4. Fun and healthy drinks

Most kids have a sweet tooth and prefer having tasty drinks during their mealtimes. Take advantage of it and pair their meals with a healthy drink and something that your kids will also enjoy having.

For a quirky and exciting drink, give your kids Fruit Me Up. It is made up of natural fruits and has no added sugar, preservatives, coloring, and flavoring. It is a delicious, easy, and healthy drink that your kids will surely like having and will keep their sweet tooth in check.

For a classic, healthy, and sustainable drink, especially for your toddlers, you can give them Blemil Kids 4. It contains proper nutrients that help the physical growth and intellectual development of your kids.

Giving your kids milk is also a good way to fill in their protein and potassium needs. This will also guarantee that your kids will have a fun, colorful, yet healthy and nutritious break-time meal.

With the changing times and the new normal, it is important that you pay close attention to the needs of your kids to help them perform at their best at school. Give importance to things that make them happy and enjoy their time. May it be through various activities or their food, keep things lively and exciting to keep them motivated each time. — (TGM)

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