August 17, 2014
I am a HUGE fan of CuteZCute products! They make adorable lunches with minimal effort. As you know from my lack of posts, life is very hectic these days. But, I’ve still managed to keep up with cute lunches (follow me on Facebook or Instagram to keep seeing them) mostly with the help of cute cutters that do all the work for me!
August 17, 2014
Yup, glass! Even BPA free plastics are not free of toxins so I’ve been trying to transition my family towards metal and glass instead. It’s not easy! I love my EasyLunchBoxes so much, I still use them about 90% of the time. However, I *have* found some great products to make the switch easier at home and school.
Plastic Free at School and Work
Glass with a silicone wrap is the way to go! We LOVE the products below.
Cora uses these water bottles daily (middle picture) and I find not only do I like the glass better than plastic or metal, I also like the tops better. The metal water bottles are cute, but the paint scratches off (hmm maybe some nasty toxins there). Also, she doesn’t always manage to close them all the way so lunch and backpack come home a wet mess. We’ve lost many an art masterpiece this way! These lids are either on or not so no more leaks! I use one of the large bottles (top left picture) at home and also have one of the Cora-sized bottles to bring milk to work for my coffee. I drilled a hole in the lid of the larger one to hold a metal smoothie straw (right picture). It works great!
I love these containers for my lunches! I usually bring two, one with salad and one with taco flavored lentils or refried beans mixed with salsa. I pop the latter in the microwave, then dump them together on a couple baked corn tortillas and voila, yummy taco salad that make my co-workers jealous! I use them occasionally for Cora as well. They are a bit heavy but I do feel they are safe with the silicone case if dropped. The main reason I don’t send them with her daily is that I’m hooked on compartments and the ELBs work so well. So far, Cora has been great about not losing lunch materials, but the cost of losing one of these babies is also a consideration.
Plastic Free at Home
To smooth out the edges and ensure Cora gets enough variety in her diet, we make her a smoothie for breakfast every day. We start with a veg juice I make on the weekends (beet, carrot and apple), add in a pear, melon, and fruit scraps leftover from making lunch the day before and round it off with a scoop of our favorite vitamin protein powder. This concoction keeps her regular and I worry less about food jags. The smoothies go great in the mason jar glasses we ‘made’ using two craft hole punches and grommets. It is really easy and the end result is so fun, especially with the Ball Heritage jars! The straws fit tightly in the hole with the grommet, making spills very hard to accomplish. I put a tiny little hole in the lid as well (the reason for the second hole punch) to reduce suction and allow for airflow despite the tight fit around the straw. We use metal straws, but if the texture puts you off, you can get glass straws instead. I assume they are durable and safe, but we haven’t tried them so I can’t vouch for them. Cora was a straw chewer so I was worried how she would do with the metal. Switching to the metal straws was seamless AND broke her of the habit.
To make the smoothie cups:
To make the smoothies:
May 30, 2013
I am a busy busy bee these days! I havent been able to keep up with the blog, but I am still making fun lunches every day (or at least I try!). Please visit my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/VeggieBento) if you would like to be sure not to miss them.
See you on FB!
April 28, 2013
Bento & Co is running a HUGE bento making contest with a trip to Japan as the grand prize. I just couldn’t let that one slip by, so I hunted through my pics for one that fit the rules (must involve pasta). The pic isn’t great and the quality of the photo is a big part of the competition so I am not really surprised I didn’t make the cut. However, I am VERY surprised some of my bento buddies did not. So, we decided to make some lemonade out of sour grapes and post a blog hop celebrating all of our entries. Click the button at the end of this post to see more (starting Monday morning)
Pasta Girl has mixed veg pasta curls covered in my special enhanced pesto (I add pureed white beans and sauteed spinach to make it milder and sneak in extra protein and vitamins). Her face, chest and bows are made from cheese. The dandy to her left is cut out of fruit leather and swimming in yogurt hiding a bed of chopped strawberries. Yogurt covered pretzels and raisins finish off the lunch. I think she’s cute, but clearly not prize winning. Cora enjoyed her, and that’s all that matters!
OK now it’s time to hop! Go check out Yenn’s cute Hello Kitty Pasta Bento over at Bento Makes Me Happy.
February 14, 2013
Happy Valentine’s Day! I hope wherever you are, whomever you are with, you feel loved, today and every day.
OK now that we are done with the mushy stuff, let’s get goofy, or really, geeky. As a kid I was the goob on the playground off in a corner with a puzzle book and I still love puzzles today. Guess that explains why I’m a web developer, don’t it? Anyway, when my lovely food geek bento friends decided to do a blog hop, I immediately knew a puzzle was in order. However, it also had to make sense to four year-old Cora, so I settled on a simple classic – the eye heart ewe rebus. Too bad I didn’t have ‘berry much’ to add to the equation
Alongside my big geeky declaration of love for my best girl is a hard-boiled heart of gold egg, yogurt covered pretzels and raisins, and yet another hearty fruit salad (kiwi, pineapple and mango).
You can (and should) keep getting your nerd on by hopping on through to Oh!bento. I’m sure you are going to love Keith’s brand of geeky fun, UK style. He promised lots of fiddly bits!
February 13, 2013
Better late than never, here is a gallery of hearty lunches I’ve made over the last year, just in case you are looking for some ideas for sharing the lunch love tomorrow. And while I have your attention, don’t forget to enter the CuteZCute Giveaway. The giveaway ends tonight, so hurry on over and enter now.
I hope to get a shopping guide up shortly
February 11, 2013
Our almond butter and banana kitty is giving us a quick wink before pouncing on the yummy strawberry mouse sneaking behind her (thanks Bentoriffic!). If she misses, she still has a raspberry mouse hanging around on top of buried berries topped with vanilla yogurt. Kiwi and pineapple kitties are rooting her on from a bed of yogurt covered raisins.
This cute kitty is one of the adorable characters in the CuteZCute cutter set. Want to win one of your own? Enter the CuteZCute Giveaway, open through Wednesday, February 13.
To make this lunch I used:
February 8, 2013
This winter, Cora fell in love with the Octonauts. I wanted to explore new ways to use the CuteZCute, so I decided to make Captain Barnacles, the polar bear. Since it was near Christmas, I put him in a fruit leather santa hat and gave him kiwi and pineapple snowmen to play with. I rounded out the meal with diced Quorn cutlet with a small cup of mustard for dipping.
The polar bear was made by adapting the cute panda character in the CuteZCute cutter set. Want to win one of your own? Enter the CuteZCute Giveaway, open through Wednesday, February 13.
To make this lunch I used:
February 7, 2013
In this cute lunch an impish frog eyes a tasty looking fly. Almond butter and jelly frog-wich with cheese and fruit leather embellishment, berries buried in vanilla yogurt decorated with a fruit leather and cheese fly, strawberry flowers and honeydew melon flowers with a froggie imprint, in one of the beautiful new Brights from EasyLunchBoxes
This cute frog is one of the adorable characters in the CuteZCute cutter set. Want to win one of your own? Enter the CuteZCute Giveaway, open through Wednesday, February 13.
To make this lunch I used:
February 6, 2013
This winter, the Veggie-Bento household has been under siege by a viral invasion. Actually, make that multiple viral invasions. As you’ve seen, I did not manage to post my lunches during that time, BUT I still made cute lunches . Looking back, at least 75% of those quick and easy, but CUTE, lunches were made using the CuteZCute. I love love love this set! I wake up, tired and late (at best) and have no idea what I am going to make. I reach for the CuteZcute, and the rest of the lunch just comes together. So far, I have used it on both of Cora’s staples – cheese and almond butter/jam sandwiches, with cut outs in the bread itself, cheese, fruit leather or all three. Some of my favorites are in the pic above and will get their very own posts over the next few days. And, here’s the best thing, I have just begun to scratch the surface. There are already loads of brilliant (and yummy) ideas to be found on the CuteZCute Pinterest board.
To celebrate my triumphant return to blogdom, I am honored to be hosting a giveaway – you can win your very own CuteZcute set! To win, you need to visit CuteZCute and leave a comment below telling me which character is your favorite and ‘like’ CuteZCute on Facebook. You can also get extra optional entries by showing Veggie-Bento some love and sharing this giveaway. You have until midnight EST Wednesday, Feb 13 to enter and the winner will be picked the next morning. The winner will have 48 hours to claim the prize by email before I pick again. Open to domestic and international entries, so UK friends go for it!
If you can’t wait that long to get your own set, or need to buy a bunch for friends (they make GREAT gifts for families with young kids) you can buy them on Amazon.