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How to make a bento box: bunny face

Have you heard of bento boxes? Bento is a home-packed lunch traditionally made with rice, fish or meat, and vegetables. They are very popular in some countries, like Japan, since they are so easy to carry around and make a balanced meal.

They are also often decorated to make them aesthetically pleasing, which makes preparing your lunch so much fun! Here’s how I pack my bento lunch to look like a bunny.

Ingredients (for two boxes)

  • 1/2 cup of Japanese rice
  • 1 can of tuna (you can also use salmon, shrimp or vegetables)
  • 1 tbs of mayo
  • 1/2 tbs or Sriracha (optional)
  • 1 sheet of nori
  • 1/2 avocado (optional)
  • Vegetables (I used some broccoli florets, carrots and spinach)
  • 1 fruit (I used grapes)
  • Materials: Plastic wrap. Small containers for your lunch.


Step 1. Cut your vegetables.

Choose any vegetables that you would like to eat cold. Cut them and wash them. Boil them for 4-5 minutes with a little salt and save them for later. (To cut the carrots I used this cute flower vegetable cutter. I also used a sonic screwdriver peeler -which honestly isn’t that great at peeling. But it looks so cool I use it when I have time to spare.)
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Step 2. Prepare some white rice.

The face of the bunny is a rice ball made of steamed rice. I recommend using Japanese rice since it’s stickier and it will keep the ball shape while you hold it. Use 1/2 cup of rice with 1 cup of water. When the rice is ready, pour some of it over a piece of plastic wrap. Make a dent with a spoon to prepare for the filling.

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Step 3. Prepare the filling.

I used spicy tuna to fill the rice balls. The proportions I used are: 1 can of tuna, 1 tbs of mayo, 1/2 tbs of Sriracha. You can adjust it if you want it to be spicier. You can also use canned salmon, boiled shrimp, tuna salad -or anything you would eat with white rice.

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Step 4. Make the bunny head

Pour some tuna filling over the rice you previously laid. I added avocado slices too –since I live to eat avocado-. You can use a lot of combinations (think of sushi roll combinations you like). I’ve also used cucumber, carrots, scallions, asparagus and cream cheese.

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When the filling is ready, take the plastic wrap and start closing the rice ball. Imagine you are closing a very fragile taco.

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Mold it carefully into a ball.

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Cut a strip of nori and place it around the rice ball. It will help it keep the form while you eat it. Add some drops of water to make the nori stick to the rice.

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Step 5. Make the bunny ears

To make the ears you have to follow the same procedure, but in smaller quantities. Since the ears are thinner I only used avocado. Cucumber or cream cheese would be great options too.

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Cut some nori to place over the ears – I hope you are better than me with scissors.
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Step 6. Throw everything together.

Use a small lunchbox to make your bunny comfortable but tight. You won’t want it to hop around the box.

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You can use a nori cutter like this one to make the small face details. I used the cutter for the eyes and scissors for the nose.
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Surround your bunny with vegetables. I normally use broccoli, carrots, cauliflower and cherry tomatoes. Remember that you want it to be tight because you will be carrying your lunch around. I added some drops of Sriracha to make the bunny blush. You can also use ketchup or salad dressing.
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Step 7. Complete and stare at your creation.

Bento boxes normally come in two pieces that stack together. I like to fill one with the main dish (the rice balls) and another one with salad and dessert. This time I filled the second box with spinach and grapes. I also included a little container with salad dressing. You can add any other fruit or salad combination.

Bento is typically eaten fresh. Which means you just carry it with you until you are hungry and then eat it without heating.
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Bento lunches are honestly one of the reasons I look forward to going out. I prepare them the night before so I can just grab them in the morning. They are perfect to cheer up a day in the office, and also make a cute surprise when I take them to a picnic. Have you prepared bento before? If you need more inspiration visit Bento Monsters and Little Miss Bento.

What do you think??