Control Your Food Portions At Home And On The Go – With A Bento Box
The Japanese have been using a bento box for hundreds of years – even back in the days of the Samurai warriors. The word, “bento” means a convenient, individually portioned meal placed into a box with a number of compartments – at least 3 to 5 – containing various courses of food. Basically, these are Japanese style lunch boxes that accommodate both working adults and school aged children.
Using a bento box for portion control when trying to lose weight is a tremendous and highly successful technique in overcoming the “eyes are bigger than your stomach” syndrome – which affects a large portion of modern day food addicts.
You have to admit that overweight Japanese folks are unadulterated rarities.
Only in recent times – since their discovery of American fast food chains like Burger King and MacDonald’s – have some of them begun to “blossom out” and stretch the limits of their clothing. I would wager that they chose to forgo the bento box philosophy as they watched their bodies balloon to extremes.
Some of these bento boxes are leak proof. Some aren’t.
And, for those bento boxes that cannot contain liquids – such as sauces, condiments, and watery foods – in their proper place without invading the territory of another compartment, it’s a good idea to have some small, disposable cups – with lids – to restrict the juices.
Comfy Package sells 2 ounce sizes of these throwaway plastic cups in quantities of 100 at a great price. They also have smaller and larger sizes – giving you choices that will meet your specific needs.
It is imperative that you thoroughly clean these bento boxes after each use – making sure that all food residues are removed. Any food that lingers in the cracks and crevices will eventually attract MOLD. If that happens, your only recourse is to trash the containers.
To ensure cleanliness, I hand wash my bento boxes first – scrubbing out all the corners and tight spots where bits of food may lurk. Then, I run them through the dishwasher. I do the same thing with all my other food carrying equipment: dishes, glasses, pots, pans, skillets, etc. Some call me a neat freak. I think of myself as “walking on the safe side!”
Now, let’s get on with looking at the best bento boxes you can use for portion control – so, you can start dropping those excess pounds! If you really want to Lose Weight Permanently, then using these portion control containers is a smart start!
I’ll begin with the high-end, high quality lunch containers that will definitely be a feather in your cap – and work my way down to the bargain priced boxes structured for the budget conscious folks.
Bento Box by Kinsho
Advertised as leak proof, this Kinsho bento box has a double wall construction with a silicone seal to keep anything juicy inside their respective compartment. A number of customers have performed their own leak tests and found that nary a drop of liquid leaked into any other compartment. What a great perk!
The box is microwave and freezer safe – and has 6 compartments which can hold up to a total of 4 cups of food.
The insulated tote bag is lined with aluminized mylar – which is a space blanket material. This is great for keeping food at their optimum temperature for a longer period of time.
A fork and spoon are included.
The extra tight seals fastening the lid to the box may be difficult for a toddler to open or close – but, it’s a breeze to get into for kids 7 or older. However, over time, it gets a little easier opening and closing the lid.
It is recommended that the lid be hand washed only. A dishwasher’s super hot water will warp the lid.
The Kinsho Bento Box – set of 2 is a high quality product and an excellent tool for controlling portions of food for both adults and kids. Reports are that they last a long, long time!
Bento Box by Bentgo
Bentgo’s box is also touted as leak proof. The sizes of the 5 compartments are geared more towards kids younger than 8 – but, adults looking for stricter portion control would be wise to give these bento boxes a try.
High durability is built in because of a child’s habit of dropping things. Plus, the latches are designed to make it easy for the young ones to open and close the box. There is a rubber overlay around the sides as well as internal hinges that go a long way to “kid proofing” this little bento box.
The compartment tray can be removed from the box and safely washed in the dishwasher – or heated in a microwave. However, it’s recommended to hand wash the box itself (outer shell). Trays are available in a variety of colors – to personalize the box a little bit more.
Included is a book of recipes – for foods that kids will enjoy.
With a 2 year warranty, the Bentgo Bento Box is a wise buy for portion control – not just for kids – but, for adults, too!
Bento Box by GRUB2GO
This is the 2019 model of GRUG2GO’s stainless steel bento box.
Using a 3 tier approach for preparing your homemade “to go” meal, the 3 compartments are a bit larger than what I would suggest for portion control – but, it’s a start. The bottom compartment is designed to hold disposable plastic condiment cups. Then there is a top compartment for food – as well as an integrated tray to hold snacks and utensils.
BPA free, there is no fear of the container hanging on to odors or stains – and, it is dishwasher safe.
The exclusive lid design – SecurLock – snugly wraps the top container – keeping food fresh for a long time. Locking clips are adjustable. Each of the tiers fit together fairly snugly.
A REMINDER: This is a METAL bento box. Do NOT put it in the microwave.
These boxes are NOT leak proof – because, there are no plastic or synthetic materials used in their design and construction. Your best bet to avoid soggy or watery foods from reaching out and touching other compartments is to keep some disposable plastic cups with lids on hand – like those from Comfy Package – to control the wet stuff.
These bento boxes need to stay flat if you don’t want the foods to mix together. If they are carried in a back pack – or fall off a shelf – all bets are off.
Several customers have reported issues with the boxes popping open. I think the closing mechanism needs to be redesigned.
There are no dividers – like other bento boxes – so, zip lock bags are essential for food separation.
The Bottom Line
Since this is a metal box instead of plastic, there will not be any of that telltale plastic taste that so often accompanies hot food in a plastic container.
If you’re looking for an attractive, classy looking shiny metal bento lunch box then GRUB2GO’s Bento Box is just what you want! And, it will get you off to a good start controlling your food portions.
Bento Box by Plus Point
Plus Point offers a leak proof, double walled bento box set of 2 – each with 4 compartments. They are microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe. You get a green one and a pink one – and all compartments are rubber lined to ensure that no leaks occur.
Just don’t put the lid in the microwave or dishwasher because high heat can deform it. Hand washing the lid is recommended.
Also, even though Plus Point uses a premium quality BPA free plastic in the bento boxes – heating greasy, sugary, saucy, or high fat foods excessively in the microwave can cause the plastic compartments to absorb food colors. In other words, don’t cook the food to death in these containers – just heat the chow up so it is hot – and, not burning or bubbling out of their compartments – and you’ll be fine.
Customers who purchased this bento box have been largely complimentary – some calling it these the best bento box they’ve ever had.
It’s amazing to see how many folks love the Plus Point Bento Boxes – Set of 2. Not only do kids love them – but, so do adults! Absolutely perfect for portion control!
Bento Box by Prep Naturals
This set of 3 bento boxes by Prep Naturals are high quality Borosilicate glass – the strongest glass on the market – with a “Smart Locking” lid that makes for an airtight and leak proof seal. This resilient glass resists thermal expansion due to rapid changes of temperature more effectively than Mason jars.
There are 3 compartments for easy control of food portions and the glass containers are not only freezer, microwave, and dishwasher safe, they are oven safe, too! But, don’t stick the lids in the oven – or the microwave – or the dishwasher. No warping – no breaking – with normal use, of course.
Cutlery is included.
Ideal for portion control.
Just about everyone who purchased the Prep Naturals Glass Bento Box Set of 3 has a smile on their face. You will, too!
Bento Box by Caleb
Caleb offers a set of 3 leak proof bento boxes – each one having 3 compartments with removable dividers. Those removable dividers come in handy. They allow you to adjust the compartments based on the size and shape of the foods you prepare.
Using snap locking lids, these leak free containers are airtight and watertight as well – thanks to a tight silicone seal. Say goodbye to liquids blending from one compartment to the other. It won’t happen with these bento boxes – even if they are bouncing upside down inside a backpack!
Designed using high density plastic, everything except the lid is dishwasher and microwave safe. You should remember to hand wash the lids – to keep them from warping due to the high heat produced by a dishwasher.
No bad thoughts were discovered from customers – which means the Caleb’s Set of 3 Bento Boxes – is a smart buy!
Bento Box by BentoHeaven
The original BentoHeaven Bento Box Bundle comes with a free lunch bag, divider, utensils, and chopsticks – plus, they are leak proof and they come in a variety of colors.
These bento boxes are reminiscent of the “true bento boxes” that Japanese folks are most accustomed to.
The lids are silicone sealed – which, according to BentoHeaven – makes the containers 100% leak free! “What is inside – stays inside!” They can be a little hard to open because they are sealed so tightly – so take some additional precautions when you have any liquids in them by securely holding the boxes on a flat, level surface to prevent spillage.
As Yoda would say, “Very sturdy and durable this bento box is. Microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe it will be.”
But, remember, like I’ve talked about with the other bento boxes – hand wash your lids to keep them from warping in highly heated dishwasher water. It is worthy to note that this bento box has rounded corners which makes getting it clean a much more efficient operation.
There is an air ventilation plug on the lid to allow you to microwave the food with the lid on – just pull up the plug to let air escape during heating – then push it back down to seal it before you pack it. Don’t forget to push the plug back down – or, you’ll have a mess all over the inside of your lunch bag!
There are 2 compartments for food. The problem is that they are not as deep as they appear – since the lids recess into the compartments taking up room for food. This design is effective in containing food juices securely within the compartments.
The elastic band that goes around the box takes a little getting used to – so, there is a slight learning curve on this.
Standard cutlery is included along with a pair of chopsticks.
BentoHeaven’s Bento Box Bundle looks sharp and expensively stylish. This is one you’ll want to keep on your kitchen counter or on your desk for “show and tell.” Food portion control could never be easier than this! Pick one up today!
Bento Box by Jeopace
Jeopace has a great bento box for both adults and kids.
It has 3 stain resistant compartments that resist mold – as long as you make sure to wash it thoroughly after each use. Since I like to be doubly sure that all food is removed from these containers, I pre-wash everything by hand before sticking them in the dishwasher.
Cutlery is included – and the top is transparent to easily see what’s for lunch.
Without lids, these boxes are microwave safe – for between 2 and 4 minutes – making sure the food temperature does not exceed 248 oF. With lids, they are freezer safe down to -4 oF. And, the container is dishwasher safe – as long as it’s placed in the top rack. But hand wash the lid because it doesn’t take kindly to the dishwasher’s extremely high water temperatures – and once the lid is warped, there is no turning back.
Quite a few customers were amazed to discover that this bento box was indeed “leak proof!”
This Jeopace Bento Box is an intelligent solution for any adult or child who needs a bit of portion control for the food in their lives.
Bento Box by 1st Green Lab
This double walled, very durable bento box from 1st Green Lab is very effective at keeping foods warm or cold – as the case may be.
One of the 5 compartments is specially formed to hold sauces and condiments.
This is one of the few bento boxes that includes a stainless steel fork and knife that is readily attached to the box lid.
Though it is microwave and dishwasher safe, that does NOT include the lid – which should never be placed in the microwave and should be hand washed. However, this bento box is freezer safe – both the container and the lid.
A plethora of buyers admit that this bento box completely exceeds their expectations – particularly considering the low price. This 1st Green Lab Bento Box comes with a 1 year warranty – including a 100% satisfaction guarantee. For all you folks trying to lose weight and needing some help with food portion control, this may well be your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!
Bento Box by Enther
Enther offers bento boxes for the budget conscious folks looking for portion control containers. They are available in a pack of 12 – or 20. The 20 pack is the most economical – averaging about a buck for each box.
To me, these are likened to the takeout containers you get at Chinese restaurants.
These stackable containers are not leak proof. Thus, even though they have 3 compartments, it behooves you to purchase some disposable plastic cups from Comfy Package to store sauces and condiments – or any watery foods.
Though very inexpensive, these bento boxes are reusable. And, they are publicized as microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe for the most part – just keep the lids out of the microwave and dishwasher.
TIP: Don’t leave these containers in the microwave too long. They will melt if given half a chance.
Actually, I prefer to personally hand wash these economical boxes because they will probably last much longer that way. Dishwashers have a tendency to be extra rough on anything cleaned in them. It’s “the nature of the beast” – and how they get everything sparkly clean.
These Enther boxes can take temperatures anywhere from -40 oF to 250 oF. However, after about 10 uses or so, they will begin to crack or warp.
The corners of the boxes snap pretty tight to the lids – but, the sides can get a little sloppy and allow air to get into the food – so pay particular attention when you are trying to get a good lid-to-box seal.
The upside to these inexpensive bento boxes is that you can afford to break one – or lose one – and it won’t break your bank.
Enther’s 20 Pack 3 Compartment Bento Boxes could be just what you need to keep you worry free if you lose one occasionally – or, if you’re tight on cash. They represent your path to better portion control while being easy on your wallet.
Bento Box by Komax
Komax’s bento box kit includes 2 leak proof, airtight containers – 1 of which is divided into 2 compartments. Utensils and chopsticks are included – along with an insulated bag. This one is considered the traditional Japanese style bento box.
The snaps on 4 sides hold the lids on fairly well – but, over time, they start to loosen up a bit. If you “baby” this bento box, it will last a whole lot longer. So be gentle.
As with all the other bento boxes, this one is advertised as dishwasher, microwave, and freezer safe. But, to be safe, microwave without the lid – and also hand wash the lid.
This is a bargain basement bento box and, if you want to keep it leak proof for awhile, try to do everything possible to keep the lid away from any high heat source. Otherwise you’ll get more than your share of warping – I’ll guarantee ya!
The fabric on the zippered insulated bag seems to be a canvas type of material – and, it is waterproof – so that’s a definite plus! Just don’t use bleach or a strong detergent to wash the bag. Personally, I recommend hand washing it with some dish soap – and air drying the bag – to keep it from being beat up in the clothes washer and dryer. You will be washing it every couple of uses, too – since canvas is famous for effortlessly attracting dirt and stains.
The insulated bag has enough room in it to add some ice packs to keep your bento box cool for an extended period of time.
For the money, the Komax Bento Box Kit isn’t such a bad deal – especially, if you’re looking for a traditional bento box to aid you in portioning your food.
Bento Box by Skater
Skater calls their offering the “Japanese Traditional Rabbit Blossom Bento Box Set.” And, I have to admit, this one is about as traditionally Japanese as you can get!
They call it “rabbit blossom” because, on the blue lunch bag, there are rabbits and plum blossoms stuck all over it.
This bento box is NOT microwave or dishwasher safe – even though it is made with food safe plastic. Hand wash everything!
This is a 2 tiered bento box meaning one container fits on top of the other container – secured by a band. Compartments are sectioned with removable dividers. So, when you’ve eaten everything, remove the dividers – and, the top container will fit neatly inside the bottom container.
The bottom container has a lid with a rubber seal – which makes it somewhat leak proof. But, I wouldn’t trust it completely. It might be best to go with some throw away plastic cups from Comfy Package if you have any juicy foods or condiments to add.
If you like traditional Japanese, you’ve found it here with the Skater Japanese Traditional Rabbit Blossom Bento Box Set. And, for all the folks out there that need to control food portions to lose weight, this is right up your alley – so…
Go for it!
You’ve just seen a dozen top bento boxes – from traditional to “not so traditional” – from expensive to “not so expensive.” Now pick one that suits your needs and get started on food portion control – because, these are exactly what you need to keep from overeating. But, remember – only eat 1 bento box full of food per meal. Okay?
Have you any other bento box suggestions or other unique ways to control the portions of food that you eat? Comment or email – firstname.lastname@example.org. I wanna hear whatcha got to say!