Which Bentgo lunch boxes are best?
Packing a lunch is a great option for a work or school meal that’s both healthier and cheaper than buying food in a restaurant or cafeteria. But it can be time-consuming and disappointing, particularly if the lunch is poorly packed. Squashed sandwiches, spilled sauces and muddled salads can ruin a perfectly nice packed lunch. Bentgo lunch boxes are high quality, stackable bento-inspired lunch boxes that are convenient and cute.
A top Bentgo lunch box is the Bentgo Fresh, a convenient plastic multi-compartment lunch box that’s stackable, portable and comes in a variety of bright, cheerful colors..
What to know before you buy a Bentgo lunch box
They’re bento-style lunch boxes
Bento is a Japanese term for a single-serving packed meal. The term also applies to the boxes the meals come in, whether disposable takeout containers or reusable lunch boxes. Bento-style lunch boxes, called jūbako in Japanese, differ from Western lunch boxes in their design, containing several compartments and usually being stackable.
Bento has a rich cultural tradition in Japan and other parts of Asia, but in the West they’re most often used for their customizability and portability, in comparison to often-bulky Western-style lunch boxes.
Bentgo is a brand
The Bentgo brand was founded in 2013, meant to be an attractive, practical, modern solution for a lunch box that increased the appeal of packing lunches. Made of good-quality plastic, silicone, stainless steel and glass, Bentgo boxes are aimed at reducing waste while making packed lunches fun. Their lunchboxes have a 2-year warranty, a good indicator of quality.
What to look for in a quality Bentgo lunch box
Most Bentgo lunch boxes contain multiple compartments for a meal that keeps its parts separate from one another. Bentgo lunch boxes aimed at children often feature more, smaller compartments while their adult boxes have fewer, larger compartments. Some of these compartments, such as those dedicated to sauces or dressings, may be sealed airtight.
Most Bentgo boxes are made of plastic, with some rubber or silicone for ease of cleaning and to make them lighter. There are also several options available in stainless steel and glass.
- Plastic lunch boxes are the lightest option, as well as the easiest to carry. Bentgo’s versions are microwavable and dishwasher safe, but only up to a point. They’re durable and easy to clean.
- Stainless steel is easy to clean and carry, as well as highly durable. Stainless steel Bentgo lunch boxes cannot be microwaved, though they are dishwasher safe. Many people looking to avoid large amounts of plastic seek these out.
- Glass Bentgo lunch boxes are another great solution, as they are microwavable, dishwasher safe and portable. They’re much less durable than plastic or stainless steel, making them a less good option for kids’ lunch boxes.
Most Bentgo lunch boxes aren’t insulated in the way Western-style soft lunch boxes sometimes are, but several models come with ice packs that can be put under the food compartments to keep food cold. Users have found great success with these, though there’s no equivalent option to keep food warm.
How much you can expect to spend on a Bentgo lunch box
Well-made, high-quality lunch boxes don’t come cheap. Prices range from around $15 for simple salad-style boxes to up to $50 for stainless-steel boxes.
Bentgo lunch box FAQ
Are Bentgo lunch boxes dishwasher safe?
A. Most are at least partially dishwashable, especially the inner components. All pieces, like most plastics, should be washed on the top rack.
Can Bentgo lunch boxes be microwaved?
A. Most Bentgo items are microwavable for up to 3 minutes safely, but check the instructions for each piece to be sure.
Are the plastics used in Bentgo lunch boxes safe?
A. Bentgo lunch boxes are mostly plastic, though they have some stainless steel and glass options as well. All the plastics used are food safe. They’re free of BPA, PVC, phthalate, lead and vinyl.
What are the best Bentgo lunch boxes to buy?
Top Bentgo lunch box
What you need to know: The most popular Bentgo model, this leak-resistant four-compartment lunch box is roomy while still being compact, and comes in several appealing colors.
What you’ll love: The separate compartments eliminate the need for plastic bags or extra containers. The Fresh comes with a 2-year warranty and is dishwasher, microwave, and freezer safe.
What you should consider: It’s heavy, which can make it a pain to tote around. A few users complained of leakage with liquidy foods.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top Bentgo lunch box for the money
What you need to know: With a more classic bento-style silhouette, the Classic is the perfect option for a small lunch box with plenty of space.
What you’ll love: The deep boxes are large enough for a good portion of food. It comes with built-in utensils. It’s microwave safe, BPA-free and has a 2-year warranty.
What you should consider: It’s not leakproof, and some users had trouble getting the utensils to snap back into their slots for carrying.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: Designed specifically to hold salads, toppings and dressings with one large bottom compartment and four top compartments, this roomy lunch box is the perfect salad box.
What you’ll love: The built-in dressing container has a separate lid to prevent leakage. The lid is airtight, and all components are dishwasher safe. The separate compartments keep the salad fresh and crisp.
What you should consider: It’s a little heavy, and some reviewers were disappointed that its design makes it difficult to shake salads.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Arabella Matthews writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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