bentoriffic

Posts Tagged ‘dairy free

My favorite pasta place in town, Peperonata Pasta in Sarasota, FL has started making gluten free, egg free, soy based pasta, and we love the fun shapes!  I buy it at the Saturday Farmer’s Market fresh.  These creste shapes are made to look like a rooster’s comb, and my kids love them!

Bentoriffic G pasta bentoI cooked the pasta and then stirred in some seasoned black beans, steamed broccoli and topped with black olives.  Included are honeydew melon and cantaloupe balls and a silicone cup of red grape tomatoes in my 4 year old’s Easy LunchBoxes container.

Bentoriffic fruity snack bentoA simple fruity snack box went off with Miss G today too.  In her LunchBots Uno, she has watermelon, strawberries, pineapple and kiwi slices.

Bentoriffic gluten free pasta with rainbow fruitLittle Miss just turned 3 has a smaller version of the same gluten free pasta with black beans and broccoli with black olives and a rainbow of fresh fruit in her LunchBots Duo with sliced kiwi, pineapple and watermelon pieces.  Both girls have ice water daily with their lunches.

Just read a great quote that I loved so I’m sharing it below.  Happy Thursday!

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PLEASE CLICK BELOW TO VOTE FOR ME ONCE A DAY FROM EACH IP ADDRESS!  CONTEST GOES UNTIL FEBRUARY 7TH!  THANK YOU!

CIRCLE OF MOM’S TOP VEGETARIAN AND VEGAN BLOGS OF 2013

Birds make me happy.  I don’t have a specific reason.  They just cheer me up so I’m hoping that my kids find the same joy in them that I do.  All the lunches today are vegan (meatless and dairy free), soy-free, gluten-free and all ingredients are organic.

spinach pasta with stars & birds

Miss G’s lunch (4 years old) is spinach rice noodles with a small bit of Earth Balance coconut spread mixed in and Field Roast sundried tomato (meatless) deli slices on top shaped into stars and a bird.  In her Easy Lunchboxes container at the top are heart shaped strawberries and watermelon birds.

Oh my stars snack bentoAlong with lunch is her preschool snack in a LunchBots Duo stainless container.  In the left compartment are carrot sticks, blueberries and dried apricot stars, and in the right are sugar snap peas, a Crimson Gold apple and a “snow ball” made of dates and raisins rolled in coconut.

Matryoshka with stars bentoIn our fancy matryoshka bento box is little sister’s lunch.  On the left side she has raisins in the flower cup with star shaped dried apricots.  Below that is jasmine rice with carrot mini stars and sugar snap peas.  On the right side are watermelon stars and below are bird-shaped sundried tomato deli slices and cucumbers.

Spinach with black bean saladAbove is the elusive mom lunch.  I am usually on the run, but decided to make a salad today.  I had a giant pile of organic spinach, about a cup of black beans, bird shaped cucumbers and some daikon I found at my local Whole Foods.  I have to say that the daikon wasn’t a good match with the salad.  I read later that its taste softens with cooking which is what I’ll do with the rest.  It was a little bitter to eat raw. On the sides are avocado slices.  For my dressing I topped with a bit of red wine vinegar.

Things I used to make this lunch:

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“Why am I NEVER going back to school again?  I miss my friends!”, Miss G asked over the weekend.  Truthfully, I enjoyed having the whole family home for a while and doing things together.  I know they were getting bored by the time the New Year arrived this week.  I also enjoyed a couple of weeks without making bento lunches and blogging which is a good thing.  I’m feeling like I really had a break.  I hope that everyone else had a bit of a break too aside from the holiday stress.

The tummy bug hit our house so only 1 munchkin is off to school today.

Linzer stars and fruit by bentoriffic

My 4 year old went to preschool with a LunchBots Quad full of healthy goodies.  From the top left she has pineapple pieces, blueberries, raspberries, two small sandwiches on Rudi’s Organic whole grain bread cut with Linzer cookie cutters and a small star out of the middle.  In the bottom left are cashews and dried cranberries.

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One of my goals for this year is to stay more organized.  I found this recycled chalk board at a local store, and I use it for my weekly menu board.  It hangs near the kitchen.  It always has one or two quick meals for when “planned” dinners don’t pan out and the others for when I have the time to prep as usual.  I also try to make enough each night to have leftovers to pack for lunches the next day.  Anything to minimize time and maximize effort is what will help make things run more efficiently.  It’s not a perfect system, but it does keep me from scrambling and wondering what to cook.

Wishing you all a healthy, prosperous new 2013 and happy lunch packing!

Aloha and Happy Friday!

Little Miss 4 year old has a simple lunch.  In her Sistema sandwich sized bento box, she has pineapple pieces, Soy Boy brand dairy free ravioli, hibiscus shaped watermelon pieces and sliced mini carrots.

For her preschool snack, she has a Wholly Guacamole brand 100 calorie snack pack of guacamole, Trader Joe’s edamame crackers for dipping, and 2 Crimson Gold apples.  Below is a small container of Marcona almonds.

Wishing everyone has a great weekend ahead.  I’ll be doing a giveaway next week like I promised a while back.  I am thankful for so many people who read and appreciate me sharing lunches so stay tuned!

I stumbled across Jenn Cuisine’s call for help.  She asked that food bloggers donate their posts today to promote donating to the victims of Hurricane Sandy.  Thanks for pioneering this day, Jenn!   I have quite a few friends and a cousin in NYC and the surrounding area.  Many who lost power and one who lost everything.  As if this storm wasn’t enough, there’s another winter storm rolling through with freezing temperatures.  I just pray that those who need help and food get it.  As a Florida resident, hurricanes are all too familiar to me.  It makes me grateful for all that I have knowing the next storm could hit here.

Where To Donate:

  • Red Cross is providing food, shelter, and other forms of support to hurricane victims.  You can donate directly to the Red Cross, you can also text the word “Redcross” to 90999 to make a $10 donation.
  • Salvation Army is also focused on providing food, shelter, and support to victims, and takes donations to storm relief.
  • Feeding America is providing food, water and supplies to those who need it as part of their disaster relief program.

My friend Cindy, owner of GreenPaxx Reusable Straws and Lids, has been directly effected by the storm along with her whole family.  Her brother is a first responder rescuing people from being stranded, flooding and downed electrical lines.  Cindy will donate $1 from each item sold directly to Sandy relief.  These reusable straws and lids make great stocking stuffers, holiday gifts and teacher appreciation gifts.  Click below to buy GreenPaxx straws and lids:

I decided to post about one of my favorite comfort foods.  My mom’s chili was always one of those foods that gave me the warm fuzzies on a cold day.  Now that our home is meatless and dairy free, I’ve revised the recipe a bit.  And dare I say that it really tastes no different to me.  This recipe is gluten free, meatless and dairy free.  It could also be soy free if you leave out the soy crumbles and add extra beans.

Mom’s Chili

Add and saute lightly:

1 large onion, chopped.  I rarely use oil in my cooking so I start with about 1/4 cup of water with the onions and add as necessary to prevent sticking.

1/2 cup of green pepper, chopped

2 minced garlic cloves

When onions are cooked (transparent), add:

1 can (2 cups) kidney beans

1 can tomatoes (not drained), I used no salt diced tomatoes

1 package plain soy crumbles or you can omit all together

1 TBSP chili powder

2 tsp salt

2 tsp oregano

2 tsp cumin

1 bay leaf

I mash about half the beans which helps to thicken the chili.  Heat over medium heat for about 1 hour.  Take the bay leaf out before serving.  This chili usually taste better the longer it sits, even the next day.  We often top it with a dollop of Tofutti brand dairy free sour cream and some Daiya brand non-dairy cheese shreds.

Serve with crackers or cornbread.   I made vegan cornbread mini muffins to go with our chili.

Please visit my other food blogging friends who chose to participate:

BentoBloggy

Mommy + Me Lunchbox

Mamabelly’s Lunches With Love

Creative Food

Miss A has really been testing her 2 year-old limits and asserting herself at home, dressing herself and lunch is part of that too.  She has been eating her sandwiches and leaving all else.  

So I did what any mean mom would do.  I left the bread out.  I used carrot flowers and put almond butter inbetween them to make carrot bites at the top left.  At the top right are cucumber flowers with hummus in the middle.  At the bottom right are red seedless grapes with a carrot flower on top and the bottom left are pineapple pieces with a green apple flower on top.  The bento box is a LunchBots “Quad” stainless container, perfect for a small toddler or adult snacks.

Tomorrow is International Talk Like A Pirate Day.  The Bento Bloggers and Friends are doing another blog hop.  There are 30+ blogs involved with countless pirate themed lunches.  More importantly, there is booty involved.  NO, not that kind of booty.  Loot, prizes to be won and lots of fun to be had.

Please be sure to stop back tomorrow to make your way through all the blog hop.  Or we’ll make ye walk the plank!

Miss G’s preschool is reviewing day in English this week, next week in Spanish.  Wednesday’s lunch is leftover dinner.  We had homemade fusilli pasta from Peperonata Pasta, a local company here in Sarasota that makes delicious homemade vegan pasta.  I mixed in butter beans and edamame, vegan pesto and organic cherry tomatoes in the shape of a W for Wednesday.  I used a cookie cutter to stamp a messy W in a large apple piece at the top left and the top right are seedless organic black grapes packed in her Easy Lunchbox container.

For her snack today, Miss G had circles of honeydew melon and watermelon with raspberry flavored So Delicious coconut milk yogurt in the small stainless container packed in her Happy Tiffin stainless bento.

And Miss A (2) had the same smaller portions of the vegan pesto fusilli pasta too packed in her LunchBots Quad.  She also had honeydew circles, pineapple and plum pieces and watermelon circles in her lunch.

Little Miss 2 year old will be back to school next week so I will be a lunch making fool next Sunday night!  Enjoying a few extra moments until then.  Today I packed Miss G (4) black bean wraps.  I used a Rudi’s Spelt tortilla, spread on some Tofutti brand non-dairy cream cheese in a thin layer.  I added black beans, a tiny bit of shredded purple cabbage, julienned carrot strips and a tiny bit of Daiya cheese shreds.  I rolled it tightly, wrapped it in press & seal wrap whole and refrigerated it overnight.  I cut it into small wheels in the morning so it would be easier to cut and stuck in some cute animal picks to hold them together.  I also included grape tomatoes which she loves, sliced kiwi and strawberries packed in her LunchBots Uno.

For snack time today I packed her a small, double tiered bento box.  In the bottom are papaya flowers and raspberries and the top container has a halved dill pickle, more grape tomatoes and assorted olives.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Things I used to make this lunch:

Lots of love in these lunches today.   Some leftover love too.  I don’t like to waste food so Miss G has leftover spelt pasta with marinara today.  At the top right is forbidden rice with sweet potatoes and a baked potato heart on top from last night’s dinner.  In the main compartment are mini almond butter heart sandwiches on Rudi’s Whole Grain bread, strawberry and watermelon hearts and green seedless grapes packed in her Easy LunchBoxes container.

Miss G started a new preschool this fall, and she’s not allowed to have any characters on her lunchboxes, water bottles, etc.  Luckily we get a ton of use out of our Easy Lunchboxes and LunchBots containers.  I did scour the internet for new bento boxes to have on hand, and I found a company called Happy Tiffin.  They make old school tin lunchbox containers, stackable stainless containers, and they have an adorable line for kids that is perfect for us.  The one we chose is called “Lunch Time”.  They’re a bit more expensive, but from experience my stainless bento boxes stand the test of time.  Since these are going to be passed down to Miss A (2),  I decided it was worth it.

I packed the Lunch Time tiffin for snack with strawberry hearts, large green grapes and coconut milk peach yogurt in the stainless container for dipping.

My husband had leftovers today too with a giant bento of leftover pasta (not shown).  He has a mixed green salad with purple cabbage and carrot hearts.  At the top left are seedless green grapes and top right are jicama slices sprinkled with chili powder and lime for squeezing on top packed in his Easy LunchBoxes container.

Things I used to make this lunch:

Anything that gives me a few more minutes is something I can buy into.  As a busy mom with 2 toddlers, I don’t want to sacrifice the important stuff like healthy ingredients.   I’ve been trying to make more foods that are healthy, with variety and less effort on my part.  Lazy?  I hope not.  My kids wanted a snack.  I thought I’d see what I could make that could normally be cooked but could also be eaten as is in a situation like a tropical storm where you lose power in your house.

I rinsed a package of cannellini beans and smashed them with a fork in a bowl.  I added 2 tablespoons of mild salsa and 1 tablespoon of Tofutti sour cream and mixed them into the beans.  I put a dollop of each on pita chips that I had, sprinkled them with a few Daiya (dairy-free) cheese shreds and topped with an olive slice.  I broiled mine for a few minutes until the cheese melted.  They were yummy!  My chips were very thin to begin with and got a bit mushy.  I would recommend toasted bread slices or thicker pita chips.  They were all gone quickly!  Protein packed and fast to fix.

Nacho served with puzzle piece sandwiches and orange slices.

Little Miss 4 year old is off to school again today.  She has a butterfly bowl of vegetable bean soup with a piece of vegan butterfly cheese on top for decoration.

And to go with her soup is a LunchBots Uno with grape tomatoes, homemade butterfly shaped vegan cornbread muffins, blackberries and blueberries with a papaya butterfly on top, cashews, dried cranberries and dried mango strips.


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