Packing a bento box is for some the most difficult part of preparing a bento. However, here are 3 simple rules that will help:
1. Use separators. This ensures that different foods do not mix in your bento box. It also ensures that sauce from one does not leak into another. There are many options for use as separators. The most popular are silicon muffin cups. However you can go the edible route and use leafy greens such as lettuce leaves and shredded cabbage. Either way these help separate and compartmentalize your food.
2. Pack it tight. This is an important part of packing a bento lunch. The tighter your food items are packed into your bento, the less empty space there is, and the more likely your food stays intact and maintain its eye-catching arrangement.
If you are preparing food in the morning - be sure to cool food down before packing if not condensation will form and this will cause your food to get soggy.
If you are using a two-tiered bento box try and regroup all the foods that you will heat up on one level (rice, fish, meat, veggies, etc.) Keep cold foods such as salads and fruits on the bottom level.
3. Make it colorful. Try and use different coloured foods in your bento box. For example, if you are packing some fried chicken, add some steamed green broccoli and shredded carrots as a side dish. Then add slices of orange for dessert. Planning a rainbow-coloured bento ensures a balanced meal but it also makes it a feast for the eyes!