An also-ran bento: Packing a Fit & Fresh Breakfast Chiller with lunch


Last time, I mentioned how I thought the Fit & Fresh™ Breakfast Chiller, which is decidedly not a bento box in the traditional sense, could serve as a bento box. I put this into practice with some leftovers. It doesn't look that photogenic so I'm putting it in the also-ran category of bentos, but it's here since I thought it might be useful to see how to use a container like this.

The contents of the bento are:

  • About 3/4 cup of mixed couscous, lentils and vegetables (see notes)
  • 1/2 cup homemade meat sauce (with a lot of chopped carrots, etc. in it)
  • Vegetable stir-fry, leftover from dinner

The couscous logically went in the bottom section. I covered it with a piece of plastic wrap to prevent bits of couscous getting stuck to the bottom of the inner bowl. The meat sauce went in the inner bowl, and the vegetable stir fry (puntarelle buds and asparagus in this case, but it could be any stir-fry) went in the most roomy top section. The photos below how the inner parts go together.


I didn't totally freeze the cooling element, but in high summer it might be safer to do so to protect some ingredients. Alternatively you could probably omit the cooling element and put some cushioning edibles around the inner bowl, like broccoli spears or cherry tomatoes (or even candy!)

I did try microwaving the couscous and the meat sauce for a about a minute. It came out nice and hot. (I erroneously stated before that the container wasn't microwave safe, but it seems it is: this has been corrected in the previous post.)

So, I think this single-stated-purpose container could become an interesting general bento box, especially when the weather gets warmer.


The couscous and lentil mix is a boxed product from Tipiak, a French company that makes, besides other things, several couscous based mixed with lentils, barley, soybean groats, épeautre or farro, quinoa, and other such grains and legumes. I'm sure they have a lot of added soup stock and so on but they are pretty convenient and tasty, and feel rather healthy anyway. I'm not sure what the availability is around the world, but I have seen Tipiak couscous products in the U.S. so you never know. (In these parts, they used to be available at Carrefour before they decided to give up the Swiss market. Nowadays I just stock up on a few boxes whenever we go to France.)

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