Thank you to Mott’s® for sponsoring this article. Grab goodness on-the-go with Mott’s®.
Can we talk about this whole bento box craze? You know, the concept of turning your food (or your child’s food) into animal shapes, and having everything nice and neat in different compartments, colorful, artistic and simply a sight to behold?
No, I’m serious. How on earth do you people have time to do this??? Don’t get me wrong, I see so many cute bento box ideas popping up on Pinterest, and they definitely make me want to go out and find a baby panda to cuddle with just so that I can be half as adorable. And every once in a while I’ll find myself pinning a few ideas because I get this notion in my head. This dangerous notion. This, “I can do that!” notion. Lord have mercy…
When the folks at Mott’s®. approached me to talk about fun and EASY lunch ideas, I was so excited to learn about some of their new products that can help make putting together an “out-of-the-box” lunch box much easier. I think most folks already know about Mott’s® for Tots, the brand of apple juice that has 40% less sugar than Motts 100% Apple Juice, which makes it the perfect choice for the little ones. And now you can purchase it in a convenient to-go form! Additionally, they offer Mott’s® Snack & Go applesauce pouches. These are the PERFECT addition to any lunch box. They are HUGE hits with both of my girls.
So I headed to the store and got stocked up on these great Mott’s® products. And while I was in the store, I realized that with the beverage and the fruit already taken care of, maybe I could actually handle putting together a bento box for Darah. She would be so surprised to find something other than a peanut butter & jelly sandwich waiting for her at lunch!
Now it is time for my confession: it was REALLY fun putting together a bento box! And thanks to getting a little help from Mott’s, it came together really quick! I decided to do a prehistoric theme, and I made a “Dino Diner” for Darah. Check it out!
Let’s take a closer look at the components and how long they each took me to make. First, you will notice the Mott’s for Tots apple and white grape juice drink, and the Mott’s Snack & Go applesauce. I filled ⅓ of the box with these ingredients in about 6 seconds. Score!!
I then added a “dinosaur-sized” pepper. My daughter likes to eat bell peppers raw. Strange, I know, but NOBODY TELL HER. She likes the crunch!
I also made some lava rice. Now, believe it or not, this came together in 10 minutes, total. I used minute rice and added 2 drops of food coloring to the water. Once the water boils, the rice cooks for 5 minutes. All done! The sun is just a little foam cut out. All of the foam cut outs I found in the school supply section of CVS for 50% off! Huge score!!!
Additionally, I took a piece of string cheese (this was bi-color string cheese, just for extra color and fun), and I cut it in half length-wise. Then I cut it in half by its width so that it would lay flat. I plopped a flower cut out on top to make a giant prehistoric flower! SO easy!
And now I want to show you the most hilarious part of the whole box: the main ingredient! I managed to turn a hot dog into a triceratops with a little help from some pretzel sticks and the top part of a Townhouse cracker! The legs took a little work, but I promise you, the entire effort took 2 minutes. It was the most labor intensive part of the whole box, and it was totally worth it!
Notice the flower and grass that the dino is munching on! It’s a herbivore, after all!
And finally, for dessert, I plopped treats in a little box (the container was also on sale at CVS in the school supply section). I called these “future fossils” and told Darah that they were creatures covered in mud! After I explained that the “creatures” were actually peanuts and the “mud” was just chocolate, she ate every last one!
Once I had a plan for what I was going to do, the execution took about 10 minutes (and that includes having the rice cook while I was working on other elements). It was actually a lot of fun to put together, and while I was working on it, I even came up with other ideas for clever ways to present lunch to Darah. Will I be making bento boxes every day? Probably not. But I could see myself doing something like this once a week. Especially if I get a little help from Mott’s to fill the box!
Want to see what Darah thought of her dino diner?
She giggled and laughed and we went over every single component of the box. I was so curious to see what she would go for first. And wouldn’t you know it? It was this!
Even a triceratops hotdog can’t compete with a Mott’s® Snack & Go applesauce pouch!