Leakproof, microwaveable bento?
October 19, 2023 8:21 AM   Subscribe

I’d like to bring the same three components to work every day: oats, potatoes, and veggies (#veganlife). The potatoes and veggies can be together but I’d prefer all three components to be separate. I don’t want the oats to leak in my bag, and I’d like to be able to microwave the potatoes right in the container, if possible. Any suggestions?

My current solution is just to bring separate containers in a leakproof Baggu, but if I could stack / attach them and pop them in my backpack it would really streamline things.

Bento style seems ideal since I don’t need divisions in the containers, don’t need a cooler and don’t want a lunch bag to put my containers in, but other suggestions welcome. If they only meet a few of the criteria, also OK.
posted by stoneandstar to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
By bento, I am assuming you are talking about different containers that latch together, without an external bag to contain them?
posted by kschang at 8:41 AM on October 19, 2023

Best answer: Zojirushi makes bento lunch containers; one of them might serve your needs: https://shop.zojirushi.com/collections/vacuum-insulated-lunch-jars

I've had my Mr. Bento since ~2010 and used it nearly every time I went to the office.
posted by wicked_sassy at 8:43 AM on October 19, 2023 [3 favorites]

Here's one off Amazon... 2 major compartments, plus a sauce/dessert/utensils layer, available in 5 colors
posted by kschang at 8:46 AM on October 19, 2023

Best answer: The tiffin-style bento Wicked_Sassy links to above is EXACTLY what I was coming in to suggest. I have had this exact one for several years now, and it would fit your needs perfectly - you can microwave the food before filling the bento and it keeps things hot, or you can microwave individual components at work. It's also dishwasher-safe.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 8:46 AM on October 19, 2023

Planetbox had a new version with a microwave container. It's leakproof and there's no plastic. We like ours so far.
posted by equipoise at 9:56 AM on October 19, 2023

Mason jars?

+ leakproof
+ microwaveable
- not attached to each other, though
- kinda heavy
+ many sizes available to suit your needs
+ cheap and ubiquitous (check thrift stores if you don't want to buy a whole case of them)
posted by librarina at 11:58 AM on October 19, 2023

I have and like this microwavable, leak-proof stacked "lunch pot" -- but it's only 2 compartments, and one is smallish. This + a simple food jar might still work better than your current solution, though?

You'll find lots of interesting options searching for tiffins, too. They're traditionally metal and not leakproof, but there are many other versions out there, including some that are insulated and many that are suitable for soups & stews. Several show up in the Similar Items section of the lunch pot I linked above.
posted by rhiannonstone at 2:40 PM on October 19, 2023

Nthing mason jars. They also make Mason jar “dividers,” that may be of interest.
posted by oceano at 5:06 PM on October 19, 2023

Pyrex and Snapware have a couple lines of "Divided" lunch containers that might do what you're looking for. The glass ones have compartments molded in, the plastic ones have sections you can take out. I haven't tried these specific items but I have Snapware storage containers and would trust the lids (the kind with a gasket) to not leak oats in my bag.
posted by yeahlikethat at 7:49 AM on October 20, 2023

Best answer: I've had my eye on the Zojirushi bento boxes for a while for my kid to take to school (where there's not microwave access). They're a little spendier than I've wanted to go for, so I can't say how they actually are in practice, but (you probably would have realized this yourself) they are a lot cheaper on Amazon. So if you get one, report back on how it does!

I have a Zojirushi beverage thermos and highly, highly recommend it -- it legit keeps things hot for a very long time, so I would expect that the food thermoses would be excellent as well.
posted by leahwrenn at 1:43 PM on October 20, 2023

Response by poster: Thanks, all!! Got the Ms. Bento, will report back but I’m quite sure it’s perfect. Heat food up BEFORE work?? Genius!
posted by stoneandstar at 11:28 AM on October 21, 2023

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