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Product Review Policy

From time to time, you may see a review of a bento related product, service or book on this site. Unless specifically stated otherwise, all reviewed items have been purchased, and not received for free. Any review of a product that has been sent to us is clearly labeled as such. We also give away all such review items in reader giveaways, or offer them as contest prizes. continue reading...

Video: Get your kid ready for school and a bento in less than 5 minutes!

I am a bit wary of putting Japanese YouTube videos here, because soon after I do they seem to be taken down. But I’m taking a chance with this one (via sherimiya on Twitter) because it’s just too funny. It’s from a program on TBS (Tokyo Broadcasting System), one of the major Japanese TV networks, called Jitan Seikatsu Gaido Shou (時短生活ガイドショー), an infotainment show about how to save time in all kinds of ways. continue reading...

A problem with logging in on Just Bento and Just Hungry

A problem has cropped up in the last couple of days with login on Just Hungry and Just Bento. Previously, you were able to log into either site, and you’d be logged in on the other. This is not working as it should at the moment.

The workaround for now is to log in separately to either site. If you have a problem logging in, please let me know (via the contact form for the offending site) and I’ll try to fix it manually. Sorry for the inconvenience! continue reading...

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Amazon.com rice cooker sale

A heads up to U.S. readers: Amazon is having a 30% off sale on selected rice cookers right now. They have models from the mid-$20s on up to the $200 to $300 range. The one featured on the top left of the page linked to, the Zojirushi Neuro-Fuzzy rice cooker, is a newer version of the one I have! A rice cooker is a really great thing to have if you are serious about bento making (see Essential equipment for making bento lunches). continue reading...

Guest Posting on Just Bento

Periodically we send out a call for guest posters on Just Bento. Guest posting here is a chance to reach a large audience of bento enthusiasts, and gain exposure for your site or blog.

The guest posting guidelines are as follows: continue reading...

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Bento Box article in the New York Times

There is an article about bento lunches in the Wednesday, September 9th edition of the New York Times, titled What’s for Lunch? Enter the Bento Box, a Touch of Japan, by Samantha Storey. I’m quoted there several times; also quoted are my fellow bento bloggers Pikko of Adventures in Bento, Biggie of Lunch in a Box, and many others - including quite a few Just Bento readers! (It’s up to you to match up the real name with the online presence :)) It’s one of the best mainstream media articles (in Engish) that I’ve seen so far - not just focusing on over-the-top kyaraben, or bentos for little kids, as many seem to do. (Samantha also blogs about her own bento-ing efforts.)

If you’ve found your way to Just Bento via the NY Times article, welcome! If you are new to bentos, you might want to start with the Bento Basics section. Bento friendly recipes of all types, not just traditional Japanese (though there are plenty of those too) can be found on the sortable recipes list. If you want to look at complete bento examples with step-by-step instructions and timelines, take a look at the bento lists. Want a way to ease into the bento habit? Try the Get Started Handbook, or follow the Get Started Bento Challenge program. You’ll find a lot more useful links on the left of this page. Last but not least, you may want to join our community of bento enthusiasts by joining our great forum, or our flickr pool.

Welcome to the wonderful world of bentos! お弁当の世界へようこそ!

(Update: Mook of FrenchBento has posted a translation of the article in French. (Mook de FrenchBento a une traduction française de l’article pour les francophones.) continue reading...

The SIGG water bottle controversy and the water bottle conundrum

About the recent SIGG bottle brouhaha, and - what do you drink with your bento, and in what? continue reading...

The Weekly Bento Planner and Weekly Meal Planner forms in Norwegian, Hungarian and French

The ever popular Weekly Bento Planner and Weekly Menu Planner forms are now available in more languages, thanks to our great international community. In addition to German, Portuguese and the original English, we now have French, Norwegian and Hungarian versions. Go to either page to download them. Many thanks to Ren for the Hungarian and Norwegian translations, Céline for the French version, and Antje for putting the forms together!