All About Japan

Our Top 5 Bento Sites

| Food & Drink , Bento

It's taken a lot of hands to put together our Bento Week, and we couldn't have done it without the help of a clutch of bento masters. Check out any of these inspiring sites to learn more about the brilliance of bento!

5. Japan Kyarabenist Association

The Japan Kyarabenist Association is about more than highlighting a selection of delightful creations: it's first and foremost about teaching people how to become a "kyarabenist master." And what's a kyarabenist? According to Kyarabenist.jp, it's anyone who loves making mealtime fun by decorating rice and making kyaraben, or character bento.

The site is entirely in Japanese, but if you have the language skill, there's no better place to learn how to up your kyarabenist cred. They also provided the images for our Bento Week cover image, for which we're grateful all the way down to the bottom of our bento boxes!

4. MyMealBox

MyMealBox offers an unending selection of pop-culture bento, featuring characters from anything from Angry Birds to Disney's Frozen. Based in Indonesia, MyMealBox also offers catering and courses in kyaraben (character bento) construction, with its delightful designs even catching the eye of NHK World.

3. Just Bento

Just Bento is sister site to Just Hungry, both of which are run by Makiko Itoh, author of The Just Bento Cookbook. The site is dedicated to introducing healthy, simple bento lunches in both traditional and not-so-traditional style. While Just Bento itself has been quiet for some time, it remains a great resource—and Maki assures us that a major update is just around the corner!

2. Just One Cookbook

Namiko Chen is the author, cook and photographer behind Just One Cookbook, an extensive online repository of Japanese cuisine. She created the site out of a desire to make "just one cookbook" of all her family recipes that she could one day pass on to her children. In addition to her incredible site, she's also got an impressive selection of videos that any cooking aficionado should definitely give a look!

1. Little Miss Bento

Shirley Wong, also known as Little Miss Bento, is an award-winning bento artist, author and blogger based in Singapore. A bento specialist for Kyoto bento goods supplier Bento&co, she's also the first certified Singaporean instructor with the Japan Sushi Instructors’ Association. And she occasionally makes some really cute bento videos.