Cute food alert! Today I’m sharing a snowman rice ball bento, packed in my Lunchbots Bento Trio bento box.
And why shouldn’t we still have festive food? Even though Christmas is over, winter will be here for a looooong time, so let’s make some lunches that will make us (or our family) smile in the middle of the day! And it’s a tutorial too, so I will show you exactly how to do just that.
This is not just another cute lunch, either – the rice balls are stuffed with crab and avocado, and they are dee-licious! This lunch gives you all the healthy things you’re looking for in a lunch: lots of colorful veggies, fresh fruit, proteins, and carbs. Man, those rice balls are SO good!
What’s for Lunch?
- The rice ball snowman is nestled in among some leafy lettuce, and is made from sushi rice, imitation crab, avocado, mayo. His face is made of nori and carrot, and his scarf is made from an imitation crab stick.
- The proteins on the side of the snowman are chicken breast chunks and a boiled egg sprinkled with seasoned salt.
- On the other side, we have some crunchy carrots and cucumber, and the fruits are diced strawberries and kiwi.
How to Make the Crab and Avocado Stuffed Rice Balls
Lay out a small piece of plastic wrap. Spoon warm rice on the plastic wrap – the amount depends on how large you want to make your rice balls. I used about 2 spoonfuls for the large one on the bottom, and one big spoonful for the middle one, and one regular sized spoonful for the head.
Wet your hands ( so the rice won’t stick to your skin) and flatten the rice out on the plastic wrap.
Combine the imitation crab, diced avocado, and mayo in a small bowl. I’m not providing a recipe for this one – you can just add amounts according to your taste. You might want to add a tiny bit of wasabi paste if you like yours kind of hot and spicy, but I kept these on the mild side.
Mix the ingredients with a fork until well-combined.
Put a spoonful of the crab filling in the center of the rice “pancake” on the plastic wrap. Keep it in the center, so the filling will be totally concealed inside the rice ball and not show through.
Use the plastic wrap to form the rice around the filling and shape it into a smooth ball. Twist the plastic wrap and squeeze it a little to make the rice ball smooth and round.
Keeping the plastic wrap twisted around the rice ball, place it in the bento box to see how it fits and to see if you need to change the shape at all. I opened up the plastic wrap and added just a little more rice after seeing it in the bento box, and squeezed it and smoothed it to make it a smooth ball again.
Make the three rice balls in the same way, and leave the plastic wrap on them while you test fit them in the bento box. After they are to your liking, you can take the plastic wrap off and pack them in the bento box with the other foods you have chosen. Try to fill all the spaces in the box, so the rice balls won’t roll around and get smooshed!
Time to add the personality to our snowman!
Here are the things I used to make the face and scarf – crab stick, nori, a small circle punch, a small nori face punch, and a carrot.
Insert the nori sheet into the hole punch, just like you would with paper. Punch out a bunch of shapes, and choose the best looking ones for your snowman.
Use a toothpick dipped in water to pick up the tiny nori pieces with ease. Place them on the snowman to bring him to life just like Frosty the Snowman ( “Happy birthday” ha ha ha).
Cut a small sliver/triangle from a piece of a carrot to make the snowman’s nose. Cut very thin strips from the orange side of crab stick to make the scarf – I used one long piece, and one short piece as shown in the pictures.
Tips & Tricks
- Use warm rice to make the rice balls. Cold rice is too hard and crunchy. You can use leftover rice, but just warm it in the microwave first.
- If you are gluten intolerant, like me, check the package of imitation crab to make sure it’s gluten free – not all of them are, so beware!
- To make the best looking bento box, fill in all the gaps and empty spaces. It looks so much more appetizing, and it keeps your beautiful creation from shifting around in transit and getting ruined. Extra fruits and veggies ( like the leafy lettuce surrounding the snowman) are my favorite for this.
Products I Used