Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Lunch Container Roundup (and Giveaway!)

This is my lunch bag.

I pack the food in glass tupperware containers. For me, it's important that my lunch containers 1) can go in the dishwasher, 2) have standard cup sizing for easier carb counting, 3) are made of glass if they will ever go in the work microwave, and 4) minimize waste. The lunchbag was free. Before I had that, I just packed the containers into a canvas bag.

But there are lots and lots of other options out there if you want something made specifically for holding your lunch. (All of these can go in your dishwasher.)

Laptop lunchboxes are a homage to the bento boxes that are popular in Japan. You've probably seen them at the great Vegan Lunchbox blog. They're phthalate-, BPA-, and lead-free and microwave safe. Pros: they're cute, great for portion control, and encourage variety in your lunch. Cons: they're not as flexible as some options, and they're probably not the best option for packing lots of wet items like soups or marinated salads.


Tiffins hail from India. They're stainless steel, which means none of the worries of plastic food storage and they're practically indestructible. Pros: These are great for larger food portions for things like salad. They're also more "grown-up". Cons: again, not a great option for liquids, and they're not microwave safe.


Fit and Fresh Salad Shaker is exactly what it sounds like. You put the salad in the bottom, and there's a container for the dressing on top. At lunch, just dispense the dressing and shake! Pros: great for salads! Cons: not very good for anything else.


Food jars (or thermoses) are perfect for anything liquid or anything that needs to stay hot or cold. Pros: best option for soups or for anyone without access to a microwave. Cons: a bit of a unitasker, this won't be of much use for packing sandwiches or salads.

And now, a contest! The prize is a three-tier tiffin from Herbivore Clothing (paid for by me). The contest is open to international contestants. Enter by telling me your favorite food to pack for lunch in the comments below. If you don't have a blog where I can contact you, include an email address in your comment. I will choose a winner using a random number generator next Wednesday, November 10.

20 comments:

flying said...

I have a one trier tiffin container to take to university but in the end I usually end up just taking a muffin or a nut mix in a small plastic container with me as that needs the least preparation time. ;)

Anonymous said...

Favorite food to pack for lunch? One-pot combos (pasta/rice with veggies and tempeh/tofu/seitan). I like everything in one container.--ishertay@yahoo.com

Fanny said...

I like to have some different things with me, like a pasta dish, a salad on the side and maybe a muffin or a cookie? Soup always seem to be too messy for me, I always end up with soup in the bag :(

Clare said...

Great round up. I love boxes they're so much fun. In fact I'm off shopping today for a new box.

My favourite was when I took a lovely, perfectly spiced curry to a girl guides meeting. They were all having chilli and as the only veggie and a leader I elected to pack my own.

The girls thought it was cool and we chatted about Indian food, veggie food then they splashed water at me!

vegan.in.brighton said...

Awesome, I love fun lunch containers! My favourite packed lunch was when I took leftover leek & bean cassoulet from Vegsnomicon to work in my food flask. The shop I worked in had no heating & was freezing in winter so this was a perfect was to warm up.

Candy Beans said...

Love the round up! I love lunch containers.

I like taking casseroles for lunch. They're comforting when work soemtiems gets stressful.

panda with cookie said...

I have been coveting a tiffin.
My favorite lunch is a baked smoky miso tofu sandwich with the fruit of the season, which right now is an apple.

Shannon said...

My favourite lunch to pack are rice bowls. I freeze leftover rice and add frozen veggies. Then I spice it up and nuke it. Super easy and not the same boring meal.

Nicole said...

As it gets colder, my favorite lunch is soup and salad! I make some variation of it almost every day!

my email address is veg.nicole@gmail.com

celyn said...

I love tiffins! I think I like packing stews for lunch best. Just right now I would like a mushroom ragout over polenta.

Seglare said...

Unfortunately, I'm quite lazy at packing lunches for work, so I tend to rotate the same things every week. My favorites are probably different (rye bread) sandwiches, smoothies, soy yoghurt, and fruits. :)

tapas said...

Lately I'm into sandwiches, but one of my favorite lunchbox meals was homemade spinach filo pockets with a side of kalmata olives and baby carrots.

Anonymous said...

Leftovers! Barring that, I make a salad with kale, tomatoes, carrots, homegrown sprouts, and an ungodly amount of whatever hummus I've made.
waveruunar @ gmail dot com

Evelyn said...

I usually have leftovers, but sometimes at the beginning of the week I'll make a batch of a chickpea-artichoke salad that is great for sandwiches. The Whole Foods near me sells some really great sprouts, so I will have a week of chickpea-artichoke-sprout salad sandwich.

Amanda Thomas said...

I loved packing vegetable fried rice or a nice salad with strawberry and walnuts.

Megan said...

When it comes to lunches, I'm usually a leftovers girl, but lately I've been hooked on hummus sandwiches. Good bread, homemade hummus, lots of veggies, possibly some tempeh bacon if I am feeling adventurous. Mmm...I want to go make one now!

mlb405 (at) gmail (d0t) com

HeyitsBeth said...

My favorite food for lunch is the classic PB&J. It never gets old! also, I kinda like it when it gets a little squished.... reminds me of being in grade school and carrying a paper bag lunch.

Beth J Morrow AT hotmail dot com.

Warrior Two said...

Peanut Butter and Jelly too! Although I've been trying to add some more variety, like quinoa, apple slices, hummus and veg, etc. Trying to eat just a little healthier these days.

vegan, today! said...

As a kid my favorite lunch food was always peanut butter sandwiches with potato chips inside. These days I'm big on crudites with various dips, a couple of crackers and some dried fruit. However, most of my lunches usually consist of leftovers!

Bonnie said...

I love these little reviews. It's impossible for me to decide what kind of lunch box I want with all those wonderful options available... so for now, I'm sticking with the containers I already have on hand :)

On the one hand I think my favourite lunch might just be a sandwich because I love bread, but I also like to pack a colourful salad with different kinds of veggies and fruits. Variety is good! Soup is another favourite, but I don't always want to bring an entire thermos with me.