So excited to share this one with you! You might think, looking at it, a more suitable name would have been ‘tofu and kale salad’ or something along those lines, given that it takes up the biggest compartment and is the main dish – but just look at little vegan watermelon jellies. Look at them! They even has little seeds and everything. Let’s be honest, it’s the star here. Nothing that adorable can ever take second place – no, the spotlight is on you today, watermelon jelly slices!
I love these little guys. They’re so fun to make, plus they look and taste amazing. Let’s walk through it together so you can make your own! Firstly, jelly crystals. We were lucky enough to find some vegan watermelon jelly, which works for Amy. Mix it up as per the instructions, and add a bit of watermelon juice or pulp as it cools to give it that cloudy look and super watermelon taste (artificial watermelon flavour has nothing on the real thing!). Once it has cooled to room temperature, take the two halves of a hollowed out lime and fill them with the mixture. Chill this in the fridge until set, then slice into smaller wedges and cover with black sesame seeds. Talk about fun! I still can’t get over how cute the seeds are 😂
Now that they’re done, I suppose we should take a look at the rest of the lunchbox too! Marinated tofu on a fresh salad is always a good choice, and a simple rainbow fruit salad is also classic. Add a kidney bean salad for some long-lasting energy and smoked almonds for crunch, and you have an incredible lunch box on your hands. Enjoy!
- Tofu, kale, spring onion, sugar snap peas, avocado, red chilli, pine nuts, spinach
- Raspberries, strawberries, nectarine, pineapple, kiwi, blueberries, flowers
- Red kidney beans, tomato, red capsicum, micro-herbs
- Vegan watermelon jelly wedges, granola, flowers
- Smoked almonds
For all you pasta lovers out there, this one is for you! Nothing beats fresh pasta and that familiar, comforting flavour, but sometimes you need a little something to fresh it up. When my garden started producing these enormous peas in the pod en masse, I knew I had a perfect match! If you do find yourself cooking with these, make sure you’re using the edible garden variety and not the ornamental sweet pea which apparently have a toxin that can cause paralysis (which is generally less than ideal). Amy always says these lunch boxes are to die for, but if we can keep toxic plants out entirely, that would be nice. Anyway once you’ve sourced them, you can use pea, pod, shoot and even the flowers! These are great to provide some textural differences and keep that clean eating vibe going. The perfect was to freshen up some vegan tortellini!
You can freshen that spring salad up even more with some simple additions. I went with nectarine for that bright, sweet taste that complements the pasta and the peas perfectly. Hearty, sweet, fresh – this lunchbox has all the best flavours in one place! Put it on a bed of spinach and tomato for a classic pasta pairing, and you’re all set. I paired this up with a little mini-breakfast bowl – the coconut yoghurt really adds a much needed creamy element to the lunchbox, while the fruit finishes the whole thing on a high note. So good!
- Pasta, nectarine, sugar snap peas, pea shoots, pea flower, pine nuts, vegan cheese, kale, tomato, radish
- Muesli flakes, coconut yoghurt, toasted coconut, cacao nibs, rose petals
- Strawberry, watermelon, blueberry, nectarine
Real talk, kitchen gadgets are the best. Who can walk past a kitchen supply store or Target without emerging with a handful of potentially useless devices? Mandolin slicers, those frozen banana nice-cream machines, animal shaped waffle makers (no regrets on this one), there’s just so many cool things to buy that will waste space in the cupboards. One thing that I do, however, use all the time, is my vegetable spiralizer! If you haven’t given one a try you must, they’re a heap of fun and actually give some super surprising results. Presenting the zucchini noodle salad!
So, if you’ve ever thought to yourself ‘boy I do love zucchini but I feel I am bored with it and can’t possibly deal with its uninspiring form anymore’ then a spiralizer is definitely for you. As it turns out, ours has two functions, noodles and ribbons. It was decided on to opt for ribbon style here and we weren’t disappointed! It’s actually interesting how it takes on a different flavour when it’s sliced so thinly. Think of a flake, compared to a regular piece of chocolate – not the same, right? This is like the flake of the vegetable world. It’s light, it’s airy, it’s fresh and it just feels very #healthy #cleaneating #inspo, if that’s the look you’re going for.
Pair your lighter-than-air feeling salad with some heavier sides and you’ve got a balanced lunch box all ready to go. Curry cauliflower and kidney beans make up some bulk, and some crinkle cut sweet potato chips and vegan greek yoghurt will make sure you feel fuller for longer. Keep things sweet with a blueberry watermelon combo, and finish up with a crunchy granola bite. Perfect lunch!
- Zucchini ribbons, tomato, micro-herbs, flaked almonds, pine nuts, spinach, rocket
- Curry cauliflower, red kidney beans, sesame seeds, coriander
- Sweet potato chips, Tofutti greek yoghurt, jalapeños
- Granola cluster, rose petals
- Blueberries, watermelon
One of Amy’s favourites! Fresh fruit, summer salad, hearty salad, couscous/capsicum dip combo and banana with coconut yoghurt – how can you go wrong! We decided to take one of out newest lunch boxes, the bento cinco out for a test drive, and we weren’t disappointed. The question is, does five compartments mean five times the fun? Sure, why not! Having all these little segments means you’re basically serving up a little tasting plate – small bites and nibbles of everything! Let’s get into it.
The first question is, do you eat the compartments one at a time, or mix the couscous and kidney beans into the salad and finish with fruit and yoghurt! Maybe you like to switch things up and mix the yoghurt into the salad? Perhaps fruit on couscous? Hmm. I hope not. That would be terrible. Let’s just stick with the regular combinations for now.
I’d say the main part of this lunch box is the fresh summer salad. If you can get your hands on some sugar snap peas these give such a green, fresh taste. Pair it with all your favourite vegetables, and decorate it with herbs as you see fit – the little white flowers are actually basil flowers from our basil plant! I love growing basil, except it seems intent on bolting and giving me nothing but basil flowers and seeds. Even if you’re handy with the scissors, they’ll always manage to sneak one past you, so why not embrace it and serve it up! They’re edible, have a super mild basil taste, and look awesome. Win win.
From there just fill this up with whatever you can find – couscous and capsicum dip is a lovely little savoury treat, and I even included a couple of chips on there to give it some crunch! Kidney beans provide body and the fruit and yoghurt are a great finisher. We really enjoyed this lunch box – if you give it a try, let us know how you go!
- Spinach, sugar snap peas, spring onion, avocado, basil flowers, abby corn, coriander, pepitas
- Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, grapefruit, oranges, kiwi fruit, edible flowersS
- Coconut yoghurt, banana, toasted coconut, edible flower
- Red kidney beans, radish, red chilli
- Couscous, capsicum dip, chips