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Need gluten-free Obento(lunch Box) Food Ideas

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I'm looking for starches-potato or rice or tofu that can be preferably made in very small quantity fresh or frozen in portions and eaten without re-heating. preferably simple, natural and few ingredients. Not asking for much am I. ;) The whole school lunch thing gets old quickly especially with a picky 9 year old.

Here's what we do now:

DS doesn't eat rice as is-has to have it shaped into onigiri with nori or fried rice or pilaf in the rice cooker(usually mushroom).

I buy the baby Yukon Gold potatoes and roast and stuff with a cube of cheese or boil, half or quarter and pan fry.

Any new ideas? What do you make?

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Ty doesn't have a bento box, but so far this year he's taken a beef/veg stir fry everyday in his thermos. I marinate the beef and then stir fry it up with broccoli, cauliflower and carrots and stir fry the rice in as well. Add a bit of VH "lite" soy sauce and that's it. I make a giant batch and then freeze it in sandwich size zip bags. One zip bag is good for 2 or 3 lunches. Today I have to make more and he asked for chicken this time. I use part sesame oil if I'm making a chicken stirfry. I wondered if the stirfry would be yucky after sitting for 3 1/2 hours in a thermos, but he's eaten it cold before and says it's fine. He also takes a SunRype Fruit-to-Go or pudding or something as well. He usually gets a juice box for lunch because there's no fridge and I won't send milk w/o a fridge to put it in.


I got this from a Chinese cooking class I took a long time ago before I had kids. I love it, my husband loves it...and the KIDS love it, too. It tastes just like restaurant Beef & Broccoli.

Beef & Broccoli

Tips: Use chicken stock instead of beef stock - it has more flavour.

If you stirfry the vegetables first, you don't have to clean and reheat the wok for the meat, but you do if you cook the meat first.

Make sure the cornstarch mix boils, so you know it's cooked. Make a "hole" in the beef and broccoli to boil the cornstarch and then mix it all up.

Keep your wok on HIGH heat all the time! If the wok is too hot add a bit of water to cool it down. Use more oil with the meat than with the veg or it will stick.


1/2 lb thinly sliced steak

1 1/2 lbs broccoli

1 small onion, sliced

1/2 cup chicken stock


2 tsp cornstarch

1 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp oyster sauce

1 tbsp oil

1/2 tsp sugar

1/4 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

6 slices ginger

1 garlic clove, minced

To thicken later on

1 tbsp cornstarch mixed with 2 tbsp water


Slice beef into thin slices against the grain and marinate. Set aside.

Cut broccoli into 2 inch lengths. Blanch the broccoli. To blanch, bring water to a boil - once the water is boiling add broccoli for 2 minutes, then remove and rinse well with cold water. Drain and dry.

Heat wok with 2 tbsp oil. Add broccoli and onion...stir fry for a few seconds. Add the soup stock and bring to a boil. Remove from wok and set aside.

Heat wok. Add 3 tbsp oil. Stir fry beef slices on high heat for 2 - 3 minutes. Add broccoli to beef and thicken with the cornstarch/water mixture. Stir to combine all ingredients and serve.

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Guest andie

Don't have any advice that could beat that picture!

Just had to say that looks amazing!!!!

My husband made the lunches today and when I asked my son if he ate his lunch, he said it was 'interesting'. Ham sandwich with cabbage instead of lettuce!

(They've asked me if I could make them from now on!)

Andie <_<

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What about using a different grain for your starch? Millet is good & "plain", quinoa has a bit more flavor. No real recipe ideas, though, sorry.

If you're already doing potatoes and he's ok with them not being reheated, what about making kebobs? You could do the potatoes skewered with some meat and other veggies. My son loved a sandwich kebob I made the other day (not gluten-free) - chunk of bagel, chunk of cheese, cherry tomato, chunk of ham and another chunk of bagel.

I'm very new to the idea of "creative" lunches, but having fun with it this year and always on the lookout for new ideas.

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andie- funny, my husband has been getting cabbage and lettuce mixed up lately

moonlitemama-millet is a good idea, I haven't tried that yet you're right it is plain and the shape/texture might be appealing

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Maybe a homemade rice roll? I eat mine cold in a pinch and they taste good still.

I make them out of frozen stir fry bags with added rice in the grocery store, mix a little sauce (soy, braggs liquid aminos, sweet and sour) fry or bake in the rice wraps.

Does he like tacos? You could do a taco bean salad. Beans, stewed tomatoes that are diced, and taco seasoning mixed. At school mix it in the lettuce and add tortilla chips.

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