3 Easy Back to School Healthy Bento Lunches

For years, my daughter would constantly ask me to buy the lavish store-bought meals in the brightly colored boxes. As you may know, I’m a firm believer in fresh food, especially for my children. But I must say, my daughter’s pleas for these boxed lunches got me thinking.

My solution: bento box lunches full of fresh ingredients my kids love.

Rainbow Bento Lunch | Sometimes we just want a little bit of everything. These power-packed bento boxes are just the thing.

Bento Lunch Ideas

Here are three of my easy bento box lunches that will bring a fresh variety to your kid’s lunches and make meal prep a breeze.

The backbone of these bento boxes is fresh cut fruit and vegetables. You may have seen my previous posts on how I prevent apples from browning; like in my Donut Apples Slices and my Apple Pie S’mores recipes.

Natureseal p

To keep my apples, carrots, and other produce from browning too fast, I use Natureseal for Fresh Cut Produce, our favorite partner to bring you innovative ways to keep apples from browning. Their signature blend of vitamins and minerals allows cut fruits & veggies last for up to 14 days in the fridge!

As you can see in the video below, the whole process is fast and seamless, since the apples get soaked immediately after being sliced.

Bento Recipes

And yes, browning can be a real problem if you are chopping your fruits and vegetables ahead of time to get ready for a party or prep lunches for the week.

The whole purpose of preparing all your fruits and vegetables at once is to be able to have them on hand, and ready to use, to make healthier choices throughout the day.

The Classic MOMable Bento Lunch | Packed with protein and and fruit, your kids are sure to love this easy bento idea.

This same method can be done with carrots, celery, pears, and stone fruits. You can meal prep for the entire week and keep them fresh in the fridge without browning for up to 14 days. Just like the fruit you find pre-cut at the grocery store but without paying a premium.

Bento lunch

Between my kids and I, I’m not sure who loves these bento boxes more. They get to enjoy their favorite snacks for lunch, and I save myself a headache when taking on weekly meal prep. Below you’ll find the ingredients lists for these three boxes. Happy snacking!

What will you put in your bento boxes?

ABC's Bento Lunch | Apples, Boiled Eggs, Carrots, Celery and Cheese, oh my! Doesn't this sound like the perfect snack box or lunch.

ABC’s Bento Lunch

  • Author: Laura Fuentes

Ingredients

  • Apple slices
  • Boiled egg
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Cheese
  • Crackers

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a lunchbox and enjoy.

Classic MOMable Bento Lunch

  • Author: Laura Fuentes

Ingredients

  • Turkey slices
  • Boiled Egg
  • Cheese
  • Apple Slices

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a lunchbox and enjoy.

Rainbow Bento Lunch

Sometimes we just want a little bit of everything. These power-packed bento boxes are just the thing.
  • Author: Laura Fuentes

Ingredients

  • Green Apples
  • Boiled Eggs
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Cheese
  • Crackers
  • Deli Turkey
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Peanut Butter
  • Jelly
  • Bread

Instructions

  1. Place all ingredients in a lunchbox and enjoy.

 

This post was part of my partnership with Natureseal. Thank you for supporting the companies that help me do what I love most: create great recipes for you! All opinions in the post are my own.

Healthy Bento Lunches | The options are endless, but here are a few ways we love to eat our veggies!

Leave a Reply 89 comments

Deborah Dadlani - September 14, 2017 Reply

My kids love turkey sandwiches, grapes, strawberries, carrots, cucumbers and zucchini muffins.

Lauren D. - September 14, 2017 Reply

Fresh fruit and veggies, boiled eggs, beans, weaps, sandwiches.

carey - September 14, 2017 Reply

My kindergartener loves hard boiled egg, string cheese, grapes, yogurt, crackers and walnuts in her lunch box.

Jennifer C - September 14, 2017 Reply

I love doing a simple box on days where I am a little rushed – meat, cheese, eggs, fruit, and maybe a few nuts or gluten free crackers. Easy, and my daughter loves it.

Shillu - September 14, 2017 Reply

Eggs, veggies, cheese & fruits .

Sharon - September 14, 2017 Reply

Dried fruits, nuts, cheese, and raw veggies.

Teeandra - September 14, 2017 Reply

Our favs are cheese and crackers, hummus, veggies and berries. But the choices for a fresh healthy lunch are endless with the bento box!

Jessika - September 14, 2017 Reply

It seems like it’s popular because it works!

Cheese, fruit and veggies make it in there one way or another! 🙂

Alma Beraza - September 15, 2017 Reply

hard boiled eggs, grapes, yogurt

Jen B. - September 17, 2017 Reply

We love fresh fruit and mini sandwiches.

Ruthie - September 17, 2017 Reply

Hummus, pretzels, carrot sticks, and apple slices are a favorite.

virginia newcomb - September 17, 2017 Reply

my sons favorite is burritos, veg and fruit normally berries, we do fruit and veg juice cause he doesnt always like his veggies

    Laura Fuentes - October 3, 2017 Reply

    Virginia, You have been chosen as our winner! Check your email for details from Stephanie@momables.com

Sai - September 17, 2017 Reply

My daughter loves to take bread with Nutella,bread with jam with a fruit/cucumber slices,sometimes with cookies and she’s fond of cherry tomatoes with lettuce leaves
As I’m Indian sometimes her lunch would be rice with veggies gravy and paratha(stuffed vegetables in wheat flour make into flat bread/tortilla)
I loved bentobox a lot,because you can give many varieties on a single box ,where kids can be happy

Annie - September 17, 2017 Reply

Popcorn, watermelon, ham and mozzarella

Laura - September 17, 2017 Reply

Meat and cheese roll ups, berries, snap peas

Erin K. - September 17, 2017 Reply

We have a few allergies in our family (eggs and nuts) so we have to be pretty careful and sometimes I feel like we use the same thing over and over again. However, the kids seem to still enjoy it! We like pretzels, cheese cubes, cherry tomatoes, carrot sticks, apples, strawberries, and turkey slices.

Cristina - September 17, 2017 Reply

Hummus, pretzels, carrots, cucumbers, cheese, grapes and some peanut butter is a winner in my house.

Kate - September 17, 2017 Reply

Cheese and crackers are my go-to lunches. Also apple slices, grapes,and nuts.

Lori - September 17, 2017 Reply

Pretzels, guacamole, fruit, cheese, & yogurt with granola.

Jenn - September 17, 2017 Reply

We love eggs- from egg salad to egg muffins, and sweet muffins like blueberry, banana, etc (made with nut butter or oats and almond). Yogurt will make a weekly appearance, and of course a fresh fruit like apple, grapes or pears. Maybe popcorn or nuts.

I have to try those non-browning packs!

Heidi - September 17, 2017 Reply

My kids love bento boxes, too! My first grade daughter spends quite a. It of time packing her lunch, with fresh ingredients she finds in the fridge.

Jennifer - September 17, 2017 Reply

Fresh fruit and veggies

Jody - September 17, 2017 Reply

I just love a bento box filled with spring rolls & nut butter dip, hard boiled eggs, nuts & seeds, berries and a small square of dark chocolate!! Yum!!

Toccara N. W. - September 17, 2017 Reply

My favorite bento box ingredients are to make a cheese plate bento and includes:

Chunk of Smoked Gouda
Slices of Cheddar Cheese
Chunk of Brie
Apple Slices
Dried fruit
Pretzel crisps
Grapes (red and green)
Almonds, roasted and salted

Sandy - September 17, 2017 Reply

Hard boiled egg (sliced), strawberries, grapes, baby carrots and cheese. A yummy and filling lunch

Sylvia Baker - September 17, 2017 Reply

My kids love cheese, crackers and berries! I usually add boiled egg or sometimes pepperoni.

Edie - September 17, 2017 Reply

Natural lunch meat slices or a boiled egg, raw veggie slices, raw fruit, cheese (sometimes with crackers), and a homemade “trail mix” of some kind with raw nuts/seeds, dried fruit, and unsweetened coconut. Once aweek we usually do tuna salad &/or send a thermos with warmed up favorite leftovers as well.

Lisa - September 17, 2017 Reply

Beans and rice, yellow bell pepper and kiwi

Lisa - September 17, 2017 Reply

Deli turkey and cheese, fresh berries, cut up veggies, and pretzels go into many lunch boxes around here!

Kyla - September 17, 2017 Reply

Breakfast is a fave, they love taking crepes rolled with jam or nut free butter, French toast or pancake strips to dip or cereal and a thermos of milk. A quick go to easy to whip up and always have the ingredients on hand.

Amy - September 17, 2017 Reply

Cheese, veggie sticks, and hummus! Also pinwheel sandwiches or tortilla wraps.

I have one starting school and one starting solids this week. I would love to win!

Sarah Mc - September 17, 2017 Reply

Fresh fruits and hard boiled eggs!

Julia Flanagan-Schmidt - September 17, 2017 Reply

I love a colorful assortment of veggies and fruits (especially berries with some banana slices thrown in), as well as hard boiled eggs. I love to include a little dark chocolate or a home baked mini muffin for a little treat.

Rebecca - September 17, 2017 Reply

I pack what my kids call a “Deli Yumbox”. It is basically all yummy bits & pieces from the deli, with some dried fruit and vegie sticks. So special cheeses, deli meats, olives, marinated artichokes, plus a carb like crackers or sourdough toast. It looks so pretty for very little effort, and always comes home empty!

    Laura Fuentes - September 25, 2017 Reply

    Congrats on being chosen as our Back To School Giveaway WINNER!! Check your email for more info from Stephanie@MOMables.com

Rachel Sanders - September 17, 2017 Reply

Boiled eggs, turkey, string cheese, fruit are some favorites!

Viviannette - September 17, 2017 Reply

Peanut butter cup, pretzels, apple slices and carrot sticks

Mada - September 17, 2017 Reply

My kids love fresh fruit and cheese! Eggs are not as loved, so I usually use turkey, ham or salami as proteins

Joellyn Aldrich - September 17, 2017 Reply

Faves in our house include string cheese or other cheese sticks/cubes, hummus and carrots/celery or pita chips, hard boiled eggs, turkey and ham, strawberries, raspberries, and peaches

Dawn - September 17, 2017 Reply

First off; I’ve never heard of Natureseal!!! Thanks for introducing it to me!!! Have I been living under a rock?! Lol.
MY Bento would contain:
Blueberries
Snap peas
Apple
Deli Turkey or jerky
Mixed nuts
1 square Ghirardelli 72% dark chocolate

Lisa - September 17, 2017 Reply

My go to bento for my toddler is chicken, olives, and a tangerine.

Debbie - September 17, 2017 Reply

We love sprouted English muffin pizzas (inspired by your cookbook) with fruit and yogurt on the side.

Ivy - September 17, 2017 Reply

My son loves lunchables and I cringe when he asks me to buy some. I’d make my own and add some cut up apple! He loves apples but hates when they brown.

Kellie - September 17, 2017 Reply

This is our first year using Bento lunch boxes and we LOVE them! One of our favorites is homemade guacamole with turkey, cheese, and crackers.

Kim Saban - September 17, 2017 Reply

Cucumbers in dressing, carrots, lunch meat rolled up (turkey, ham, salami), cheese, berries, or apples with yogurt or Clementines. Another thing that works are the reusable silicone cupcake liners to keep food separate for those of us with kids who like things “separate” 🙂

Vicky H. - September 17, 2017 Reply

My kids love turkey sandwiches, carrots, ranch, fresh fruit and cubed cheddar cheese. I haven’t won them over it hard boiled eggs yet, but working on it

Alex - September 17, 2017 Reply

My kids love turkey butterflies. I fold half a slice of turkey into a wing shape, thread it onto a toothpick, followed by a mini pickle, and then the second half of the turkey slice also folded into a wing. Cute and tasty! Quick and easy for me to make too.

Nicole Bu. - September 17, 2017 Reply

My son loves the fish theme – sandwich (any kind) cut like a fish, blueberries for bubbles, goldfish crackers, dried seaweed & those gummi “swimmers” from Trader Joe’s (if I haven’t finished the bag off).

Sylvia Argueta - September 17, 2017 Reply

I love crackers, ham, cheese, carrots, and grapes.

Emily - September 17, 2017 Reply

My boys favorite bento boxes are pb&j triangles, strawberries, carrots, and cucumbers! They are healthy and super easy.

Kate Olson - September 17, 2017 Reply

My son has been loving grapes, strawberries, peanut butter and apples, baby carrots and popcorn for his kindergarten snack! These boxes would be perfect. I definitely need a new system because I can’t handle all the baggies!

Karen - September 18, 2017 Reply

My favorite add in is one little chocolate or piece of candy, it ups the wow factor and makes my little guy happy to eat all the healthy food and enjoy a little treat too.

Ramona Holland - September 18, 2017 Reply

Any type of seasonal fruit and sandwiches

Zita - September 18, 2017 Reply

I know it’s not fresh, but my kids love Bear’s (bearnibbles) pure fruit yoyos next to their lunches 🙂

Kerry - September 18, 2017 Reply

Sliced cheese and crackers,veggies with hummus and fresh fruit.

Cathy Hansen - September 18, 2017 Reply

Eggs, cheese crackers, snap peas, oranges and rolled lunch meat.

Sally Babcock - September 18, 2017 Reply

My daughter loves tuna on lettuce leaves,hard boiled egg,and apple with peanut butter dip.

Jennifer R. - September 18, 2017 Reply

My son likes when I do “make your own pizza” boxes and sandwich crackers (meat, cheese, and crackers they can stack together) with fruit.

Kelli - September 18, 2017 Reply

My kiddos love nuggets and since they tend to eat everything room temp, I cook up some nuggets and send them cooked down. Plus varrots, grapes, cheese slices nd a dip

Stacey - September 18, 2017 Reply

Cheese, crackers, strawberries and carrots

latanya - September 18, 2017 Reply

turkey sandwich, apple slices, milk, and cheese is something I know my son will eat

Angela - September 18, 2017 Reply

When my son first started school, he didn’t like any of his food touching. So Bento box lunches were perfect for him. Things I put in are turkey and cheese slices, pea pods, grape tomatoes, baby carrots, strawberries, peach slices, plum slices, apple sauce, mini meatballs, crackers, grapes, sometimes a banana mini muffin or zucchini mini muffin as a treat.

Maria - September 18, 2017 Reply

My daughter likes boiled eggs, celery, grapes, Apple slices with peanut butter, and yogurt.

Carin - September 18, 2017 Reply

Hummus, veggies, fruit, feta, and a piece of dark chocolate 🙂

Tara Kidd - September 18, 2017 Reply

My favorite ingredient is any kind of fruit or cheese ☺️

Jennifer Fleming - September 18, 2017 Reply

Cheese, crackers, nuts, fruits and veggies.

Pam - September 18, 2017 Reply

My granddaughter loves turkey (cut out in cute shapes, of course), cheese and crackers, and green apples.

Marion - September 18, 2017 Reply

My kids love almond butter & jam sushi with strawberries, apples and carrots. Oh can’t forget the cheese chunks.

Amy - September 18, 2017 Reply

My twins love eating a homemade lunch and these lunch boxes look amazing! They love turkey and veggie wraps, grapes, strawberries, and cucumbers. I have never been able to pack apples yet and would love to try what you used to prevent browning! Thanks for sharing. Amy

Melissa - September 18, 2017 Reply

I put fruit kabobs with blueberry yogurt dip, ham and egg muffin cups with green onions, and Amish oatmeal wth brown sugar, and string cheese!! YUM-O

Diane - September 18, 2017 Reply

My son usually has cheese, fruit, yogurt, and mini sandwiches in his. I tend to take snack ones with me to work that include fruit and veggies!

Maryanne W. - September 18, 2017 Reply

We like to do hummus, pretzels, grapes, blueberries, bagel.

TS - September 18, 2017 Reply

Our favorite bento style lunch is Rainbow. We slice up different fruits and veggies for each color (Red strawberries, orange slices, yellow pears etc). Then I add a slice or two of cheese and some pita chips. I’ve been buying Natureseal on Amazon since your post on the guacamole. I bought it for a party and then I discovered the apple browning solution and my life was changed for meal prep! Thanks, Laura.

These bento boxes look great. Thanks for the ideas!

Molly - September 18, 2017 Reply

Hummus with crackers, boiled eggs and cheese and berries for sure!

Jill - September 18, 2017 Reply

My five year old twins are the n kindergarten and packing lunch is a new experience. One son loves breakfast for lunch: banana waffle sticks w/syrup, chicken-apple sausages and Greek yogurt with cut up (frozen) cherries. My other son is more adventurous. His favorite “bento” lunch this year was: Naked “fried” ravioli, meatballs w/marinara sauce for dipping, salad of tomato, artichoke hearts, roasted red pepper and olives, grapes. This is what I have to deal with. Two very different kids with very different tastes.

    Laura Fuentes - September 19, 2017 Reply

    I would love those lunches too! 😉

Chantal Labelle - September 18, 2017 Reply

My kids love ham and cheese sandwiches lol. Makes it easy on me sometimes but I always like to change up their lunches. They also love strawberries, babybel cheese, yogurt drinks and gummies

Katie - September 18, 2017 Reply

Salami, cheese, fruit and hummus

Be - September 18, 2017 Reply

Fruit, hard boiled eggs, slices of mozzarella cheese and baby carrots…they love those. Although on ocassion I’ve had to include some crackers and a cookie so that it mimics the store bought meals!

Melissa - September 18, 2017 Reply

My kids love what we call “snacky lunches.” Some favorites include, whole grain crackers, cheese, chunks of grilled chicken, carrots, bell peppers, fruit, and nuts. Sometimes I’ll make a veggie wrap with cream cheese seasoned with my homemade ranch mix, roll it tightly in plastic wrap overnight, then slice into rounds.

Amery - September 18, 2017 Reply

My daughter loves tortilla roll-ups or sandwiches cut in shapes, string cheese, cut fruits and yogurt.

Kim - September 19, 2017 Reply

Ham and turkey circles with cheese and wheat crackers, along with sliced apples using the amazing Natureseal, or other fresh fruit, carrot sticks and red, yellow, orange, green peppers.

Heather Mandell - September 19, 2017 Reply

Her new fave is Joshua’s flatbread “pizza rolls” – flatbread, 2% mozzarella and Turkey pepperoni rolled up and grilled on our Foreman to melt & seal. Served with pizza dipping sauce. Sides are olives and a rainbow of plum tomatoes plus a clementine and a small homemade cookie for a treat.

Jenny Simmons - September 19, 2017 Reply

We love, lunch meats,crackers and cheese to make our own lunchables we always add some fruit as well

Abbelina - September 20, 2017 Reply

Loves ham -n-cheese roll ups. Any fresh fruit. Apple sauce pouches. Yogurt!

Rachel - September 20, 2017 Reply

I love all fresh fruits and veggies. I love this idea. Does the eggs and meat leave a weird smell being in the same container as fruit and veggies?

    Laura Fuentes - September 20, 2017 Reply

    I have never noticed weird smells and my kids have never complained.

Amy J. - September 22, 2017 Reply

My daughter loves “sandwiches” made from sliced apples w/PB. Fresh fruit and veggies are popular with my kids too.. I’m not very good at getting more creative yet though :p.

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