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Yum-Yum Bento Box (500)

I’ve come a very long way from my very first bento and actually, probably my first 100 bentos. People who have read my blog from the start might not remember, but I used to rarely post cute food. Since I was going Weight Watchers, I stuck mostly to just arranging my food neatly.

Eventually, I hit my 100th bento and I think that’s probably around when I started getting pretty addicted to actually making cute and not just looking at cute. For my 200th Bento, I did a Sanrio theme. When I got around to 300, I spent literally all night making my Noah’s Ark Bento, which to this day is one of my most popular creations. I had intended my 400th bento to be my Shantotto bento for the FFXI Fan Art Contest, but I miscounted and a sandwich bento ended up as my 400th by accident. Today, I finally got around to making my next big milestone bento and I chose to make it none other than the cover of my bento book, Yum-Yum Bento Box: Fresh Recipes for Adorable Lunches, which is now “In Stock” at!!

Yum Yum Bento Bento

I was giggling to myself this morning imagining calling this post “Yum-Yum Bento Bento”, but decided that maybe it would just sound silly to most people. I know I had been telling everyone to wait for me to give the go-ahead to order the book and I had been planning on posting that date as June 25th, but a couple days ago people started telling me that their books had already shipped from Amazon and so books started going out a month before I thought they were going to. I had thought it would be end of June, but people who ordered got lucky I guess!! If you’ve been anxiously waiting for my go-ahead, consider today that day! πŸ™‚

I got up at 4:30 AM to do this bento, but after taking 4 hours to make it, I found out that I should have actually gotten up at 3:30 instead. I think I’d have finished a lot earlier if I hadn’t decided to cook the rest of the hamburger and pork so that it wouldn’t go to waste, though. For the sake of comparison, here’s the actual cover:

Yum-Yum Bento Box

As you can see, I had the most trouble with the middle, as I couldn’t possibly do letters that small. Anyway, let’s start with the piggie burger.

Piggie Burger

A little cheeseburger with a pig face on the bun, he makes up the top left corner of my lunch. Unfortunately, you can’t see the underside of him. He’s topped with fish sausage and nori.


Next to the piggie are the little tamagoyaki chicks. This bento doesn’t actually have its own page, but it’s there as a side image to show you something else you can do with our tamagoyaki recipe.


Next up I have the little toadstools. Maki used a cute cutter for this, but I don’t have it, so I drew my own on paper and cut it out with a toothpick. I used a straw for the holes and cheeks. It tops shrimp spaghetti.


Below that are the chickens, who have little kernels of corn for beaks and fish sausage cheeks. My rice was drying out at this point, so they’re a little “feathery” in my lunch, haha! I’ll just call it bento “special effects”.

Miss Octopus

A milestone bento wouldn’t be one without me being a dingbat, right? I forgot to buy bologna, so I used cheese for Miss Octopus instead.


Half of the bentos in the book are ones I’ve never made, because Maki made her designs in Japan. These penguins have always been rather intimidating for me, but we have a pattern on the recipe page and I used that and viola! Penguins! It was extremely easy and such a relief too. I had thought I’d mess these up so bad.


This little lamb got it’s own page, but is just a component, so she’s great for sticking into any of the other lunches we have designed for you in the book.


Last of all are the froggies with pork patties. As you can see, I had to cut one in half, haha! That was amusing, but with a butter knife, it went pretty smoothly.


Here’s a close up shot of the middle. I probably shouldn’t have boiled the blue letters, but oh well. In the end, you know what it’s supposed to say, right? πŸ™‚

Anyway, lunch break is over now and I’ve only eaten a couple of sections. The rest will go home with me for the kids to eat! Hopefully I don’t reach 600 too soon because damn these are exhausting! Hopefully this inspires some of you that weren’t sure about the book to take the plunge and buy one! It’s just $11.43 on Amazon. I’m still scheduling book signings, so when I have a full schedule I’ll be sure to post that for everyone.

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  • OMG what a feat!!
    You should totally put the pic in the book’s next printing!

  • un-be-freaking-lievable!! you replicated all the designs perfectly, and it was SO clever to break up a box this way. GENIOSITY!

  • WHAT!? Or as Hurley would say…”dude”!

  • SIG

    Oh my goodness, I was waiting for it, and since not in stock yet, I didn’t pre-order! Gonna do it now! Congrats girl, you’ve come a long way.

  • SIG

    Oooo very excited and happy. Just placed the order and was very pleased to see that Susan’s book is selling for $10.76 again! Very glad for the good discount deals for both your books. Can’t wait!

  • Congrats on #500! Wow what an accomplishment..and a book too! I was on Amazon the other day and came across your book..needless to say it is #1 on my wish list (waiting for had no idea it was yours. You are inspiring!!!

  • Wow. That is amazing. Congratulations on your 500th! It’s perfect πŸ™‚

  • Bree

    That’s so adorable. I just got your book in the mail today and can’t wait to try some of the recipes. Congrats on #500!

  • Kristin

    This is fabulous!! Obvious that you took a LOT of time putting it together!

    Thank you for sharing and inspiring us, especially newbies such as myself. Looking forward to browsing your book and making some of the recipes. (I am intimidated by the tamagoyaki, but love the chicks!)

    How did you do the letters?

    many thanks.

  • hi! Congratulations on your 500th! it’s amazing how far you have come (I was watching a little from the livejournal community). πŸ™‚ I bought your book in celebration hahaha! Thank you for sharing and inspiring – and perhaps encouraging. I find it hard to make tamagoyaki, I might just have to keep trying πŸ˜› have fun!

  • sarah

    really enjoy your blog, and can’t wait to get my copy of the book!

  • Rebecca

    WOW!! This must have been a LOT of work, but it came out beautifully!!

    I am so excited to see how the book came out and to see what went into it!! Both Borders and Barnes & Noble had a release date of June 2nd, but June 25th is my 20th birthday, and I know one thing I want πŸ˜›

  • Yay!! I will be buying your book right away! I love the bento πŸ˜€ It’s so beautiful and matches perfectly!

  • Eckardt(t)

    Congrats Pikko! Awesome as always πŸ˜€

  • leslie

    A BRILLIANT IDEA! It looks fabulous. I actually like Miss Octopus in yellow… very cheery. Can you put yellow stencils of her on the walls?? lol. I am very excited about my book being in transit already. It is supposed to arrive tomorrow… and, alas, I am going to CO tomorrow for 5 days! I have to wait 5 WHOLE DAYS to see it! aaaaccckkk!! Did the kids think they hit the jackpot when you brought so much home?

  • Wow!!! This bento is so awesome! Congratulations on the book as well. πŸ™‚

  • Lil’chan

    Oh my, what a great bento! Congratulations on your 500!
    It’s amazing what you can do in 4 hours… if I think what I can make in that time ^^”
    well, your lunch looks reaaaaaly great. Hope it was delicious, because it looks so πŸ˜‰

  • Pikko, this is super cool bento! Congrats on your 500th bento! Have been enjoying your blog all this time. All the best for you! (^.^)

  • Oh wow! This is a bento tour de force! Fantastic.

  • This book will be mine on payday, because I totally want to try some stuff out with the bento stash you sent me πŸ˜€ I just got the package the other day and spent about 2 hours squeeing and gushing to my husband what I was going to do for the kids. Then he says “What about me?” so it looks like I need to get him a box too! I can’t wait πŸ˜€

  • I totally hit submit before I meant to. I wanted to say congrats, the book cover bento is awesome, and thanks for all the inspiration πŸ˜€

  • Congratulations on your #500 and on your book! The bento is so amazing, as it looks just like the cover of the book!

  • This is a feast for my bento hungry eyes! So inspirational! Congrats on Bento 500!

  • Just got my book in the mail yesterday. It’s adorable! I love it!!!

  • Congratulations!!! can’t wait to order the book, and thank you so much for being my inspiration. I am a huge fan of you!!

  • Congrats on the 500th bento! Amazingly detailed and it looks just like the cover! Can’t wait to get my copy of your book! πŸ˜€

  • Wow! I am impressed – and I can totally read the lettering πŸ™‚ My book arrived the day before yesterday, but I have only had time to quickly leaf through it so far – planning to go over it better (I hope) this weekend πŸ™‚ I need to pack a bento for a visiting friend Sunday before he leaves on Monday, so I’ll need the inspiration! But I also need to clean my house… Oh, if only I could stop time for a day to catch up! πŸ™‚

  • Courtney

    Screams! Gonna order one NOW!!

  • Courtney

    Just placed my order should have it by June 3rd YAYNESS!

  • You know, I need to order mine and have it shipped to you, so you can sign it and send it to Alaska πŸ™‚

  • Holey cow!! This bento is awesome. My son wants to know if he can order some of your bento’s…we will wait patiently by the mail box. LOL!

  • Awww!! cute cute CUTE!! Soooooo adorable! I’m very lucky to work with you, Pikko!!

  • Aimee

    You are AMAZING girl! I’m so excited about the book!!

  • VERY cute bento! I’m going to look for your book at B&N/Borders at Ala Moana/Ward next time I go! =]

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  • Val A.

    I got my book in the mail today and am so excited. I am so
    glad I pre-ordered it. Very, very cute book.

  • Nick

    I am going to buy a copy to support a fellow ffxi player lol. And I love your bentos!!! If we wanted too, could we send you our books to have you sign them maybe?

  • Hi Nick! That’s very nice of you! If you wanted, you could ship it directly to me and I can then mail it to you.

  • Love it – and WOW that the book is shipping! Great job!

  • leslie

    I can’t believe it! The book arrived the very day AFTER I left for my 5 day vacation to Colorado! Since getting home on Tuesday, I have been pouring over it every night. I was so inspired, that I offered to make a bento for one of the gals at work. She absolutely gushed over it! (and she’s a picky eater!)…Since then, I’ve requests from several people at work that would like me to make one for them.,.. I keep offering to show them how, really! Thank you so much for sharing more ideas and recipes. Again, I have to tell you that I love the cover, and I love the 500th bento you made to match!

  • This bento is just soooo cute that I have to try to realize some of the sections!!! Anyway I’m not as skilled as you so I will need to practise before I do anything correct! congratulations for the book (again)!

  • Congrats…you make amazing bentos!

  • I know I’m late but: CONGRATS on your bentoversary: 500 is a HUGE number! And it’s amazing what you did with #500… [bows in admiration]. Are you still recovering from the work? πŸ˜›

    I think I’ve been following you from pretty much the beginning and it’s been a fun 3 years!

  • Hi Pikko! I just bought your book at Uwajimaya in Seattle this past weekend. I have been poring over it since I picked it up, and I am even dreaming about bento. And, it was a great help to me when I returned home (to Sonoma County, CA) after my Seattle trip, because I had a bit of a nightmare trying to get back. Missed the last airporter shuttle in Oakland, then had to take a bus and BART to get to SFO, to catch the very last airporter shuttle to Sonoma County. I spent a lot of time during those three hours of planes, trains, buses, and automobiles looking at your book, so thanks for making the time go by faster. πŸ™‚

  • Hi…i just learned and started to make bento. I do not even reach #20 yet…:-p but I’ve ordered your book from and it is on its way now to Jakarta, Indonesia. How excited and couldn’t wait to read your book.
    By the way, I follow you on twitter too.
    Congratulations and wish you all the best !

  • I made frog onigiri today, using your book as inspiration! Thanks so much for giving us great bento ideas. Here is my froggy bento:

  • Hey Pikko!

    I’m not sure if this is the right place but I just wanted to link you to a short review of Yum-Yum Bento Box I wrote: [link]

    Also, I know I’m late, but congratulations on the book – and props for this bento! 4 hours of work, wowzer 0.o!

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  • Hi Pikko, I know this post was made a couple years ago and for some reason I can’t see any of the pics. Any way to get them back up? Thanks!

  • Pikko

    Yeah a ton of my posts have missing images from my server move. I’ll add them back in!

  • β€œYum-Yum Bento Box (500)” actually got myself simply hooked with your web page!
    I actuallydefinitely will wind up being returning a lot more regularly.
    Many thanks -Eric

  • Comment

  • I Love Bento… Thx for share

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  • LOL201342

    Really cute and really mouth watering ;-0