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About

Biggie laughingI’m Biggie, a work-at-home mom of a four-year-old in San Francisco, obsessed with cooking and building a faster, better packed lunch. I lived in Japan for nine years and am fluent in Japanese, but am into all cuisines. I noticed loads of time-saving packed lunch tips in my Japanese-language cooking magazines and bento cookbooks, so in February 2007 I started trying them out, tweaking them for a non-Japanese kitchen and world food, and documenting them here. My goal is tasty, attractive lunches with a minimum of morning prep. I call my son “Bug” online, and “Biggie” is short for Bigfoot, a childhood nickname because I have big feet.

You can get a feel for bento-style lunches and this website by reading the bento FAQ, then looking through the Top Speed Tips and Recipes pages. Bento gear sources include the online bento store list, the Lunch in a Box Amazon store, and the Bento Store Locator (BSL) with Google Maps for international reader-generated retail store listings and feedback. I also started a couple of Flickr photo groups: Kid Eats about children’s lunches and Lunchbox Recipes for food recipes that are particularly well suited to packed lunches. If these are up your alley, please stop by!

My back story

I lived in Japan in my 20′s but didn’t pack lunch often until my husband was misdiagnosed with celiac disease at the end of 2004. Celiac disease is an intolerance to gluten found in wheat, barley and rye. After the diagnosis, I didn’t want my husband to feel deprived or depressed about his dietary restrictions. I decided to start sending along delicious lunches that would make him feel like he was eating better food than his colleagues who went out for lunch. A trip to the local Japanese-language bookstore turned up bento cookbooks that I started studying, specifically the creative packing tips and techniques that could be adapted to our normal diet.

Biggie bento portraitNine months later, the doctors at a new celiac clinic figured out that my husband didn’t have celiac disease after all (!), and we were able to reintroduce gluten to the kitchen. I lapsed with packing lunches after the “undiagnosis” until our son was about one, when I found myself carting around a diaper bag stuffed full of little Tupperware containers, or leaving the playground early to go get lunch. Time to pull out those bento boxes again so we can spend more fun time out and about!

Bug now attends a Japanese immersion preschool where daily bentos are the norm, so I’ve got even more incentive to speed up our morning preparation time. His lunches fall in the middle of the spectrum somewhere between food art and sandwiches in plastic baggies.

About comments

Comments are welcome on all of the posts, recent or old. I would ask that sellers refrain from posting self-promotional comments, and that when recommending a product or website you disclose any related commercial affiliations you might have so that we can understand where you’re coming from. Comments are not an appropriate place for PR pitches or advertising; feel free to e-mail me privately at lunchinabox (AT] gmail {DOT) com with those. I will quietly delete these sorts of spam comments on posts to keep conversation focused.

Press, awards and notable web mentions

With recent articles in Newsweek and Elle France, bento lunches seem to be becoming more popular in the West recently. For notable mentions of Lunch in a Box in the press and on the web, see the Press and Awards page.

Advertising and reviews

Lunch in a Box has an Amazon store with favorite lunch-packing products and books. To support the running of the website, Lunch in a Box receives a small commission from sales made from the store, other Amazon links, and other affiliate links on the site. If you are an advertiser interested in placing an ad on Lunch in a Box, please see the information on the Advertise page. I occasionally write non-paid mini reviews of things in my kitchen; see the Product Reviews page for a full list and my review policy.

Contact

You can get in touch with me here. I try to respond to e-mails, but leaving a comment on the site itself will generally get a faster response as it’s easier for me to track there.

Thank you for visiting Lunch in a Box!

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