Healthy Bento Lunch Box Recipes {5 Ways}

These Healthy Bento Lunch Box Recipes are the perfect grab-and-go lunch – make them beforehand and store them in the fridge for up to 5 days!

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Ingredients and substitutions

Turkey & Hummus

  • Deli turkey slices – you can also use some sliced-up pieces of cooked turkey instead.
  • Mixed veggies – I like using cucumber, carrots and cherry tomatoes but you can use whatever veggies you have on hand.
  • Hummus – use a store-bought version or make your own (like my healthy avocado hummus).
  • Cheese sticks – feel free to swap out for your favourite kind of cut-up cheese.

Meat & Cheese

  • Sliced kielbasa – substitute for ham, salami or another kind of sliced meat.
  • Cheddar cheese – use any sliced cheese of your choice. Swiss or mozzarella would also be good.
  • Crackers – you can also swap out for veggie sticks for a healthier and lower-carb choice.
  • Raspberries & blackberries – feel free to use any combination of veggies like strawberries or apples.

Egg & Cheese

  • Hardboiled eggs – leave these out if you’re not a fan of eggs.
  • Apples – swap out for another kind of fruit like strawberries, raspberries or blueberries.
  • White cheddar cheese – use any sliced cheese of your choice.
  • Grapes – substitute for any other fruit of your choice.
  • Raw almonds – pecans, cashews, pistachios or another kind of nut would also be good.

Chickpea Salad

  • Chickpeas – if you don’t have canned chickpeas, dried bulk chickpeas will work, just make sure to rinse and dry them first.
  • Light mayo – a bit of sour cream or non-fat Greek yogurt would also work.
  • Lemon juice – freshly squeezed lemon juice is best but the bottled variety can be used in a pinch.
  • Turmeric – saffron is the best substitute for turmeric here.
  • Curry powder – swap out for a bit of garam masala or ground cumin instead.
  • Salt & pepper – to taste.
  • Dried dill – you can also finely chop up 1 tbsp. of fresh dill instead.
  • Garlic powder – if you don’t have any garlic powder, use a bit of freshly minced garlic.
  • Celery stalks – use a bit of cucumber or fennel bulbs, or leave this out altogether.
  • Green onions – chives or shallots would provide a similar flavour.
  • Extra veggies and crackers – use any combination of your choice.


  • Pitas – English muffins would also work well here.
  • Pizza sauce – if you don’t have any pizza sauce on hand, regular old tomato sauce can also be use.
  • Mozzarella cheese – I suggest shredding a ball of pizza mozzarella but you can also use your favourite blended variety.
  • Mini pepperoni – use turkey pepperoni or swap out for another topping of your choice.
Healthy Bento Lunch Box

How to make a bento box

  1. Assemble your ingredients.
  2. Make your lunch box.
  3. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
  4. Serve and enjoy!
Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Why use a bento box?

Bento boxes were first common in Japan. Thanks to the Bento's ability to make lunchtime fun for kids, they’re popular nearly everywhere these days!

The most popular Bento lunch boxes feature elaborately styled food, but you don’t need a special box; glass meal prep containers work perfectly. Bento lunch ingredients are often colorful and always fun – that’s why kids love them!

It’s also a fantastic way to manage portions and divide up larger servings, and it’s better for the environment when you skip using plastic bags and switch to reusable products.

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Bento Lunch Box Ideas

I put together five different bento boxes for you to try that both kids and adults will love. They’re ready in minutes and are perfect for work and school lunches!

Pizza Bento Box

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Turkey and Hummus Bento Box

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Chickpea Salad Bento Box

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Egg and Cheese Bento Box

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

Meat and Cheese Bento Box

easy lunch idea - meat and cheese with crackers and fresh berries in meal prep container

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a bento lunch box?

Bento lunch boxes are food containers with separate containers and sections for all your different kinds of food. You don’t need to use a special container though – your normal glass meal prep containers will work just as well!

How long does it take to make one?

Some people take hours to craft a picture- perfect bento box, but with these recipes, you really only need 5-10 minutes of prep time and you've got amazing lunches ready in no time. By preparing several bento boxes at one time, you can meal prep lunches for an entire week. No fancy ingredients, not a ton of prep time and no cooking time.

Where do you buy bento boxes?

With the recent popularity of bento boxes, you can find them at nearly any national chain store, or online at places like Amazon. You want to look for boxes that have compartments for the different food groups. Most are dishwasher and microwave safe. Many even come with silverware and an ice pack to keep everything at a safe temperature until lunchtime. These are the bento box containers I used in this post and here are some cheaper plastic bento boxes.

portable lunches with fresh fruit, vegetables, and deli meat

Storing bento boxes

If you are packing hot food into a bento box, allow it to cool completely before putting the lid on. This will help you avoid soggy meals. Bento boxes can be kept in the refrigerator overnight or can be made quickly in the morning.

How long they last in the fridge depends on the ingredients. The five in this recipe will last several days. Just wait to put any non-refrigerated ingredients in until the day you plan to eat them.

Freezing components of this recipe

You can freeze most of the ingredients in the bento boxes, but do so individually. For example, make the chickpea salad and freeze it separately from other items you plan to add to the box.

You can also vacuum seal the bento box ingredients in a similar manner.

Healthy Bento Lunch Box

More healthy lunch recipes

Meal prep tools for this recipe

5 Healthy Bento Lunch Boxes all photographed on an angle

Healthy Bento Lunch Box Recipes {5 Ways}

These Healthy Bento Lunch Box Recipes are the perfect grab-and-go lunch – make them beforehand and store them in the fridge for up to 5 days!
Course Main Dish
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Calories 194kcal


Turkey & Hummus

  • 16 deli turkey slices
  • 2 cups mixed veggies (cucumber, carrots, cherry tomatoes)
  • 1/2 cup hummus
  • 4 cheese sticks

Meat & Cheese

  • 1 cup sliced kielbasa, ham or salami
  • 1 cup sliced cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups crackers
  • 2 cups raspberries & blackberries

Egg & Cheese

  • 8 hard boiled eggs, sliced in half
  • 2 apples, cored and sliced
  • 1 cup sliced white cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup grapes
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds

Chickpea Salad

  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • 1/3 cup light mayo
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt & pepper
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill or 1 tbsp fresh dill, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 2 green onions, sliced
  • Extra veggies and crackers, to serve


  • 3 pitas, cut into small circles
  • 1/2 cup pizza sauce
  • 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 1/2 cup mini pepperoni or turkey pepperettes, sliced


  • Add ingredients of choice to each bento box container. For chickpea salad, mash chickpeas in a large bowl with a fork (will be a rough mash), then serve over lettuce in bento box container with sides of choice.
  • Bento boxes will last in the fridge up to 5 days. Enjoy!



NOTE: Nutritional info is for the Turkey and Hummus bento box. It will need to be calculated separately for all other bento boxes – Myfitnesspal or Livestrong are great options for this.
The formula for a bento box is simple: you need a carb, protein, vegetables and fruits.
Bento boxes aren’t just for kids; combine all the flavours you love for an adult-friendly bento lunch box.
Tightly pack your bento box to ensure things don’t shift around.
Store these boxes in the fridge for several days.
Freeze some of the ingredients separately then assemble your fresh bento boxes.


Calories: 194kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 17g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 41mg | Sodium: 805mg | Potassium: 353mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 61IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 48mg | Iron: 1mg

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