Back to School Challenge Day 3

Pictured Recipe: Pizza Roll-Up Bento Lunch

Learn how to pack a healthy and eco-friendly bento box lunch.

Take-along lunches are back in style. Packing your lunch saves money, encourages you to eat a healthy meal and can reduce waste.

The ancient Japanese tradition of packing lunch in a bento box, a decorative container with small compartments, elevates the take-along lunch. Bento lunches usually contain a wide variety of foods in artful arrangements; plus, the compartments of a bento box help control portion sizes.

If you don't have a bento box, use reusable containers to pack a waste-free lunch.

-Michelle Edelbaum, Digital Editor

Pack Your Lunch

1. Pick Your Container

Bento boxes come in styles for all ages. Basic reusable food-storage containers work well too.

2. Get Creative

Sandwiches and wraps work in a bento, but don't forget less-typical lunch fare, such as roasted tofu, rice balls or pasta salad.

Pictured Recipe: Salmon Salad Bento Lunch

3. Think Colorful

Typically a bento contains at least five different colors-fill yours with a variety of fruits and vegetables.

Back to School Challenge Day 1

Pictured Recipe: Egg Salad Bento Lunch

4. Pack Efficiently

Pack foods in small containers to control portion size and use reusable silicone cupcake liners or even lettuce leaves to keep foods separated.

Keep It Cool

5. Keep It Cool

Refrigerate or pack the box in an insulated lunchbox with a freezer pack.