Every kitchen needs a few basic bento supplies to get started on the fun. Plus the right tools for the job will save your sanity with great results in LESS TIME & EFFORT. Who wouldn’t invest in that? Following the classic 80/20 rule, you’ll be able to create nearly everything on this bento blog with just the items listed below. I’ll try to call out any special extras needed for a post.
BIG TICKET ITEMS
- Rice cooker – Perhaps the most-used appliance in any Asian household! Our Zojirushi was a wedding gift from Japanese relatives.
- Mixer – The KitchenAid stand mixer is a classic workhorse.
- Bento box – I’ll post about the various types of lunch boxes soon. But you’ll need some kind of container with a lid that can safely hold food. In a pinch, I’ve reused deli meat packaging. *12/09/14 UPDATE – I posted a bento box guide. Hope you find it helpful!
- Food picks – Create little fruit kebabs, fasten deli meat spirals, and hold a sandwich together. Plus they’re just an easy way to dress up a lunch!
- Sauce containers – Little cups with lids to hold dips & other condiments. You could go basic or super cute. Teddy loves the panda one.
- Silicone cups – Reusable for cupcakes & muffins but also keeps bento foods from separate. Because you know a kid will lose his mind if a carrot touches his sandwich.
- Cookie cutters – Use for cookies, but also for sandwiches and rice balls when you’re feeling fancy. In addition to circles in various sizes as well as letters and numbers, this set also covers all the holidays so you’re ready for any situation!
- Aspic cutters – Because who doesn’t love carrot stars?!? You need stainless steel to get through the tougher veggies.
- Rice paddle – For the uninitiated, this isn’t for hazing your kids. (Although I’m tempted to put it to the test on occasion.) This utensil is broad & thin & textured for fluffing up and serving rice. Plus it won’t scratch up the nonstick coating on your rice cooker.
- Nori punch – Makes it easy to cut cute little faces from a sheet of seaweed
- Cutting board
- Paring knife
- Chef’s knife
- Kitchen shears
- Baking sheet
- Loaf pan – Most of my casserole & baking dishes are vintage Pyrex because they’re so fun to collect and pretty to serve. Now that my secret is out I hope you won’t bid against me!
- Rolling pin
- Offset spatula
- Pastry bag & basic tips
- Squeeze bottle – “Flood” that icing!
FINISH WITH A FLOURISH
- Cake stand – A set of tiered servers will help you show off your handiwork in style!
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