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Posts Tagged ‘fun food for kids

I am excited to share the new CuteZCute cutter with my readers!  One lucky reader will win a CuteZCute kit of their own.  This contest is open to readers worldwide.  This tool takes the guesswork and time out of detailed cute lunches.  I was given a kit to try out and review.  I have received no other compensation for this review.

The CuteZCute Food Deco Cutter kit comes with 6 pieces.  There is a face frame for the template, 4 animal feature cutters including a panda, frog, pig and cat and a great pick for poking out small pieces from the templates.  My favorite feature aside from the awesome possibilities and ease of use is that each facial cutter has a side for cutting through on one side and for simply imprinting on the other which takes the guess work out of hoping you don’t ruin a bunch of bread.  Many cutters also come with intricate designs but don’t offer a way of getting the pieces out without ruining what you’ve cut.  This Panda Assistant poker makes it very simple to get out the eye, ear, nose and mouth pieces without poking small holes in what you’ve cut.

This panda lunch was the first lunch I made with the CuteZCute cutter for a lunch.  I used whole wheat bread and cut the face features from Stretch Island fruit leather strips.  For each creation, you simply cut the face shape from whatever you’re using.  I’ve seen pizzas, rice, cookies, english muffins, bread, tortillas cheese and you could even use pie dough for individual pies.

I also did this almond butter and jam pig lunch with the cutter.  I can tell you after a couple of years hand cutting shapes, this kit is a dream.  I spend about 10 minutes tops making the lunches with the CuteZCute.

The above frog quesadilla was made with green tortillas and Daiya brand non-dairy cheese shreds.  The frog is on a Wholly Guacamole lily pad.  From start to finish this took me less than 10 minutes.

Some examples of the different faces you can make with the cutter are below.

My blogging friend also has a link up party on her blog of dozens of cute ideas for the different uses of all the possibilities with these cutters.  Click below to see all the fun CuteZCute lunches:

Lunch With Eyeness CuteZCute Ideas

I decided to come up with a few holiday ideas for the CuteZCute on my own just to show how quick and easy it can be to have fun.

Now that Halloween’s over, there are still fall festivals happening so I thought a scarecrows would be fun.  I used the face template for the face.  I hand cut the hat and used the bread crust scraps to make hair.  The facial features are the frog eye cutter made from fruit leather. I used the pig ear cutter on a mini carrot slice for the scarecrow’s nose, the pig’s eyes are the cheeks made from apple skin, and the frog’s mouth cutter is the scarecrow’s mouth from fruit leather.  I used 2 pretzel rods for the scarecrow’s arms.

I made a reindeer out of pumpernickel bread and the face template.  The eyes and nose were the panda bear’s eye cutters.  The reindeer eyes are the bread scraps from the scarecrow as is the reindeer’s mouth made from the panda mouth cutter.  The red nose is also using the panda bear’s eye cutter used to cut a small piece of apple.   I used the bread scraps and the panda mouth cutter to make the antlers for the reindeer.

Other reasons to love the CuteZCute:

*It’s owned and operated in the U.S.A.

*It’s made from durable, food safe plastic and packaged in recyclable packaging.

*It’s so simple your kids can use it.

*It’s a perfect birthday gift, holiday gift and stocking stuffer.

*At $8.99 it’s affordable to almost everyone considering how many options the kit gives and available for sale at both my favorite bento supply site All Things For Sale and on Amazon.

The Rules:

Contest opens 11/2/2012 and ends at 12:01am on 11/9/2012. Winner will receive one CuteZCute Food Deco Cutter Kit.

Contest is open to all people worldwide.

One entry for each item:

1.”Like” CuteZCute on Facebook

2.Pin a photo from this giveaway to Pinterest, and leave a comment with the URL to the Pin in my blog comments.

3.Tweet about the giveaway and leave your twitter username in my blog comments.

Winner will be chosen by random.org and posted on 11/10/2012.  Winner will have 72 hours to respond to request by email.  If first winner doesn’t respond in the given time, a new winner will be chosen.  Please make sure you leave me a way to get a hold of you.  Good luck!

Counting down…8 more days until Halloween! Included in the link below are quick photos and simple ideas of how to fill little tummies before the sugarfest!  Click the link below for my post from last year’s kids’ party.

2011 Halloween Party Ideas For Kids

Miss G (4 years old) is having a batty bento.  She has a larger bat and smaller bat sandwich on top.  They’re pumpkin butter and almond butter sandwiches made from Rudi’s Whole Grain bread and cookie cutters.  Above them are a seckel pear with bat sticker and red seedless grapes.  At the top left are mini carrots and grape tomatoes and at the top right is cannellini bean bruschetta with multi colored heirloom tomatoes packed in her Easy LunchBoxes container.

Miss G’s snack today is Sabra hummus with pretzel sticks, dried apricots and the heart shaped container with a bat has a few cinnamon apple almonds in it as a treat.

My husband had something far less organized for lunch.  I grabbed an Easy LunchBoxes  container and threw in a rainbow of fruits & veggies.  In the main compartment are snow peas, carrots, grape tomatoes, a seckel pear and a mandarin orange.  At the top left he has quinoa lentil tabouleh from Whole Foods and at the top right is my homemade cannellini bean bruschetta.

The quickest, simplest way to get your kids to eat their fruits and vegetables is to make it fun!  If it has a peel that they’re not going to eat like a banana or an orange, color on it or put a sticker on it!  This was a simple Sharpie marker on a clementine orange that took about 1 minute to make.

I grew up in an old house than I swore at the time was haunted.  Something was always creeking, there were always critters in the basement and it had those funky unexplainable smells and noises that could really freak a kid out.  Now that I’m older, I realized that the house was pretty cool despite the old factor.  But as a kid those things create vivid memories.

Luckily my girls (4 and 2) don’t scare too easily.  They think creepy is still pretty funny.  I made them both haunted house bentos today.  Above is Miss G’s Easy LunchBoxes container.  From the top left is a seckel pear and cantaloupe houses with a black cat pick. Below the cantaloupe is a peeled clementine with a black cat face ring, raspberries with a kiwi house on top, Rudi’s whole grain bread with pumpkin butter filling and more sliced kiwi.

For her snack today, my 4 year old has a Happy Tiffin bento packed with cashews in the round container and a haunted house apple in the middle surrounded by sliced strawberries.

Miss A has a LunchBots Quad packed her her mini version of the same.  From the top left are sliced strawberries and a cantaloupe haunted house on top, a clementine with a witch face ring ( my 4 year old said it was an eagle), in the bottom right compartment are mixed nuts, seeds and dried raisins and cranberries and the bottom left are Rudi’s whole grain pumpkin butter haunted house sandwiches.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Hot!  That’s what fall is like in Florida.  While everyone else gets cool evenings and crunchy fall leaves with gorgeous color, we’re still sweating and pretending it’s summer.  I remember the good old days when October meant snow in Minnesota where I grew up.  My kids don’t know any better so I made some Florida fall bento lunches.

Packed in her sistema brand lunchbox, my 4 year old has kiwi slices with a clementine peel squirrel on top, mini acorn sandwiches, black seedless grapes and orange cantaloupe leaves.

For her snacks today, Miss G has grape tomatoes with mini carrots and in a smaller container she has trail mix with cashews, walnuts, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and dried fruit.

I like to change things up between kids so my 2 year old is having the same trail mix with a squirrel cutout for decoration.  She also has acorn and pumpkin sandwiches, honeydew leaves and cantaloupe acorns packed in her LunchBots Quad stainless container.

And for the other snack I packed a fall themed squirrel bento with strawberries, plums (underneath) and a peeled clementine orange in the middle.

I am fortunate enough to have been on the list of people who were chosen to try out the new CuteZCute cutter for fun sandwich and bento faces.  I have to say I’m super impressed at the easy of use and cleaning and the adorable, fun lunches in about 5 minutes flat.  I can’t wait to let my 4 year old make her own lunches with it.  For the affordable price it also will make for super cute gifts for the holidays too!  All these tools come in 1 box.

The cutter is available at my favorite bento supply store Bento USA by All Things For Sale as well as on Amazon.

The panda face is on Rudi’s whole grain bread with a Stretch Island fruit leather face.  The sandwich is on a bed of brown and wild rice with grape tomatoes and sugar snap peas.  At the top left are grapes in a flower shape with a piece of panda baran (food separator) for decoration. at top right is a clementine orange I colored a panda face with a marker & peeled the ears up for fun.  The lunch is packed in her Easy Lunchboxes container.

Miss G’s snack today was strawberry hearts, panda face shaped cantaloupe pieces and apricot mango soy yogurt in the round container in her Happy Tiffin bento.

Even Miss A gets a small version with the pig cutter.  On the left side of her LunchBots Duo are pieces of cantaloupe, pluots, and below in the white pig silicone cup are watermelon pieces.  Above the sandwich on the right is a small pig container with dried cranberries in it and sugar snap peas.  The sandwich is simply whole grain bread with almond butter on the bottom and strawberry jam on the top so that it squishes through for color.

Things I used to make this lunch:

I’ve shared my love of farmer’s markets before.  I made another trip this weekend and found some dragonfruit and some pear cactus at the Sarasota Farmer’s Market.  The pear cactus turned out to be beautiful and in my opinion a pain to eat with all those tiny seeds.  The kids did try and like the dragonfruit though.

sliced dragonfruit

At the top right it’s mixed with pineapple chunks.  It’s a bit like a pear but definitely has its own distinct taste.  At the bottom right are sliced strawberries and blueberries and at bottom left are pears and grapes and almond butter heart pockets made of Rudi’s Whole Grain bread.  The lunch is packed in LunchBots new Quad stainless container.

Miss G has a hear pocket sandwich and 2 small containers of dried fruit and nuts packed in her sistema container.

And she has a LunchBots Uno with black seedless grapes, halved mini carrots, honey mustard in the sauce container, whole wheat israeli cous cous and Whole Soy & Co. brand apricot & mango flavored soy yogurt in the Duck container.

For her snack she has cubed dragonfruit and d’anjou pears in her new rabbit container.

And my husband has leftover dinner of cous cous pilaf with spinach, chickpeas, tomatoes, red onions, olives, and marinaded tofu on top packed in his Easy LunchBox container.  At the top are blueberries and strawberries.

Things I used to make this 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:

Today is the first day back to school for us.  Not sure that I’m feeling quite ready for this, but here we go.  These lunches are from last week’s playdate at a friend’s house.  Tomorrow I will post the back to school lunches.  I got 2 new sandwich makers to try.  The first one is from Bento USA by All Things For Sale.  I saw a lunch that they did, and I thought it was the cutest thing.

Expect more pandas from us throughout the school year!  This makes sandwich pockets and even toast cute for your little picky eaters.  Fill the panda face with vegetables or fillings to make them different colors or simply use different kinds of bread.

I was in a rush so I went for simple.   The panda sandwich is on Rudi’s Whole Grain bread with Justin’s Almond Butter and strawberries in the middle.  A homemade mini vegan cornbread muffin is above the sandwich and heart shaped strawberries.  At the top left are organic raspberries with vegan chocolate chips in the middle and panda baran.  At the top right are sliced red seedless grapes and sliced dried apricots packed in an Easy LunchBoxes.

And I got a new sandwich cutter from Pampered Chef friend.  It’s called the cut & seal & makes uncrustable looking sandwich pockets.  I get the feeling I’ll be using this one a lot as makes things quick for me, and I can easily make sandwiches ahead of time and freeze them!

I decided to make a pig out of it for Little Miss 4  year old.  I used candy eyes and the heel of the bread is great for dark accents (the nose and ears).  She also has a vegan mini cornbread muffin and blueberries.  At the top are carrots and Tufutti sour cream for dipping in the small pig container.  At the top right are strawberry hearts with a raspberry in the middle and pig pick packed in her Easy LunchBox.

I packed myself a plain almond butter sandwich and a LunchBots Duo full of fruit.  From the top left are fresh, local Florida mango chunks, blueberries, rasperries and mini carrots.

Things I used to make this lunch:

Today’s guest post is from Alex from Lunch with Eyeness.  She and I have been friends for over 25 years, and she is the one that originally taught and inspired me to do bento lunches.   Bentoriffic wouldn’t be around without her!  She doesn’t have a blog, but I borrowed this one from her photo album of all the amazing lunches she makes for her boys.  Thanks, Alex,  for everything!

Since Sarah has two girls, she doesn’t have a lot of reason to do boy lunches. I have two boys and they are tuff guys, not so much into cute as cool. Although it is harder to find picks and sandwich cutters that have tuff boy themes, I have found I can still make some fun lunches that don’t make my tuff boys cringe.

Sports are the easiest theme for boys. This lunch was for opening day, but the sandwich could easily be a football, golf ball, basketball – any sport. I happened to have candy baseballs, so I cut the baseball bat sandwich, but it wasn’t necessary. I carved the baby carrots by hand, just make sure you have a sharp knife and except the first couple not to look right – I make lunches in the morning and I often end up eating cheese and carrots for breakfast because I messed up the first few times I tried something.

I got the idea for the the Babybel cheese head from these cute cheese heads on Over the Crescent Moon (http://overthecrescentmoon.blogspot.com/2011/02/cute-cheese-for-boys.html). Just cut a curve down from the top half of the wax and fold it up a little for the bill. Then I used food pens to draw his face and his body on the small container with applesauce in it. If you don’t think you’re up to carving the hat, just take all the wax off and draw stitches on it!

I cut the letters out of bologna with little letter cutters – I am lucky that our team name is so short! And, again, used food pens to draw the stitches. Peanuts are a big part of baseball for us, but you could also use Cracker Jacks or plain popcorn – whatever snack your family associates with baseball. I also happened to have tiny, round, white Japanese crackers that I got at the Asian market and so I threw those in with drawn on stitches as well. Look around your pantry and you might find something that works just as well, maybe mini marshmallows or Nilla Wafers. Green grass baran and a green silicone cup round out the feel of the field.

Well, I hope you got some inspiration for fun lunches for boys! Thanks for letting me guest post for you, Sarah!
Make sure to stop back tomorrow for our all Olympic inspired Blog Hop tomorrow!

Guest post by Lise LaTorre of Veggie-Bento

One of the ways I speed up lunch-making in the morning is by preparing batches of cute food in advance. That way, making lunch is just a matter of grabbing a little of this, smashing a cookie cutter on that, then sticking a bunch of picks everywhere. If I have five more minutes, I smash around some smaller cutters to add that ‘special touch’ (Did I mention I have a full-time job on top of being a mom?). By far the best tools I have for advance cutification are silicone molds.

3 Ways To Use Silicone Molds for Cute Lunch Foods

1. Freeze Stuff

Hummus freezes well and retains its shape and detail even after it has defrosted. Smaller shapes work best so that they will be soft enough for dipping by the time lunch rolls around.

frozen hummus butterflies

Yogurt is another great item to freeze. I particularly like using coconut yogurt since it adds some nice transparency. I prefer larger molds with easily identifiable shapes since yogurt melts quickly and details get lost by lunch time. I have also started putting colored coconut yogurt shapes on a plain greek yogurt background. The difference in consistency and color helps preserve the shape once melted.

frozen yogurt ladybug

2. Bake Stuff

Baked egg whites are very easy to make and have a nice, smooth consistency. Simply pour egg white into oven-safe molds and bake at 325° for 15 minutes. For a little extra fun, drop the shapes into a cup with warm water with a little natural food color in it. This works best for simple shapes without a lot of detail.

egg white butterflies

I’ve recently been experimenting with burying healthful ingredients in cheese to get my daughter to eat them. So far, we have been most successful with beany cheese bites. Stuff cheese pieces into smaller baking molds, spoon in some re-fried beans, then cover with more cheese. Bake at 350° until cheese is fully melted. Allow to cool, then pop them out. Easy and yummy, even at room temperature.

beany cheese bites

Smoosh Stuff

Conventional egg molds make shaping hard-boiled eggs easy and fun. However, they come in a limited range of designs and my highly-distractable preschooler got bored pretty quickly. So, I have been experimenting with less traditional forms. Thus far, medium-sized silicone molds are the winner. Place a warm, peeled egg in the mold of your choice and put a plate and something heavy on top so that the egg is slowly, and gently pushed into the mold. If the egg is a little on the small side, stuff paper towel in the non-essential part of the mold. Thanks to Alexandra Einess and Kendra Peterson of Biting My Hand for these great egg molding tips!

smooshing an egg ladybug hard-boiled egg

Similarly, rice molds are common in the world of bento. We don’t eat a lot of rice so I haven’t wanted to invest in them. On the rare occasion I do want to include rice in a lunch, I use the silicone molds instead. For these, I use pre-made sticky rice and molds with very simple shapes. I put the rice in warm, and put a piece of parchment paper on top. Once it cools, I flip it over and plop it out onto the parchment paper, then flip it back over to place in the lunch container.

rice dragonfly

Silicone is such a versatile material the possibilities are endless! What are some of your favorites?


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