Bento item of the week: Silicone cupcake liners

As I posted yesterday, making individual pies in muffin or cupcake liners is a great way to make ‘planned leftovers’ from dinner look neat enough to put into a bento box. As Sile suggested in the comments, if you don’t want to use throwaway paper cups, silicone cups are a reusable alternative. Calphalon makes a nice silicone liner and cupcake/muffin pan set which would be perfect for this. The liners are in pretty pastel colors.

calpha_cupcake.jpg

You can also use the liners as dividers in your bento, for salads, fruit, and so on. They sell the tin and liners as a set, as shown here, or the liners on their own. Extras might be a good idea to have if you do freeze the food ‘cupcakes’.

Besides Amazon, I’ve also seen them online at Target - shop around, as I always say! Unfortunately neither store ships overseas, which is a bummer. Luckily Mr. Guy is in the US right now on business, so I’m going to give him a shopping list I think…

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Target shopping

If he’s going to Target, you might want to ask him to pick up a Fit & Fresh lunch box. That’s what a lot of us stateside use for our bentos, and I know a lot of us would be thrilled seeing a ‘pro’ using the same container. Definately a ‘hey! I could do that!’ moment for us!

Also, silicone cupcake/muffin liners come in various shapes. Round, heart, square, even diamond shaped. See if he can pick you up a variety! There’s also mini-muffin sized heart shaped ones that I use when I want to add a bit of hummus or peanut butter to my lunch for a dip.

Silicone Baking Pans

I’ve never used the Cupcake cups because I’ve never had to - I have the silicone baking pans themselves. Things like my husbands jalapegno poppers come out perfectly without sticking and, if firm, keep their cute shape in the bento.

I love my silicone baking

I love my silicone baking cups! They are a really good investment. I have a few sets from The Daiso and another set that I picked up from clearance at a craft store. My Daiso cups are cuter colors, but the other set is much sturdier. I happen to like the look of lettuce dividers better, but you can’t cook in those and sometimes the fact that I don’t need to wash, dry and cut the baking cups makes them win out in the end.

If I had to pick “essential accessories” for bento making, outside of the box, this would probably be somewhere near the top.

Kohl's

Was just at Kohl’s (desperately seeking blue jeans for short people!), and Kohl’s has silicone baking cups at a pretty good price. From a couple different mfrs, in different colors and color combos. (They’re having their giant sale right now so you could even get them on sale.)

US stores

Target’s online doesn’t always match their stores, but I noticed these at Target just this evening. (I only saw the liners alone, but I wasn’t really looking at pans, so they could have been there.)

For people who want cheaper, I think I paid $8 for a dozen silicone liners at Wal-Mart (it’s usually $10 for Calphalon, Wilton, etc.). They are all red, so not as pretty, but the price was right. I will definitely check out Kohl’s though!

I agree they’re near the top of the list for useful bento things. Mine hardly ever get put away because they’re either in a bento or the dishwasher or the drying rack. I am hoping to find some small ones soon at a good price.

I don’t cook a lot, so I don’t freeze a lot, but I did do some pasta with sauce. I froze them in foil liners. Then, when I want to use them, I could put them in the toaster oven if I wanted. But usually I want to microwave, so I peel off the foil and stick the frozen blob in the silicone liner, and then microwave it. For the small amount I freeze, this is cheaper than buying another set of silicone liners (particularly since I have a ton of foil liners left over from various things… in fact, I have so many I think they have been breeding in my cupboards somewhere).

Another one about Kohl's

I was at Kohl’s few days ago and as it was mentioned two post before this one they carry the silicone liners but also they carry the silicone liner and cupcake muffin pan same one as the one in the picture and still on sale.

shopping!

Argentee, thanks for the idea about the Fit and Fresh! I’ve put it on the shopping list.

I do have some silicone baking cups but the attached kind. (I even have a couple of these outrageously expensive Fauchon ones…what could I say, couldn’t resist the shocking pink) I also have some washable plastic bento cups and such. I should try using them more actually.

I’ll have to see is the Guy is willing to go to Kohl’s too. He never minds going to Target for some reason but other shopping may meet with some resistance.

Aussies, I’ve seen them

Aussies, I’ve seen them around at various cooking stores. Just FYI.

I’ve been lusting after a set of silicone bakeware forever… sigh

If ever you want to bake

If ever you want to bake muffins or mini pies in your silicon cups, there is a drawback in comparison to paper ones: the bottom doesn”t cook as well and stays a little sticky. The pie crust won’t crunch in the same way it does when using paper cups in a metal tray, and you have to be patient when taking out your muffins (it’s the price to pay if you don’t want them overcooked at the top, and just good at the bottom). Nevertheless, as cups these silicon baking cups are great! I have more flashy colours for mini baking cups and pastels for the big ones.

I bought Wilton cups, in ALL

I bought Wilton cups, in ALL of the shapes they have (circle, square, triangle, heart, diamond - each pack comes with two colors!). The regular circles and hearts I got from walmart, but the other shapes, I got from Amazon (you can’t beat the free shipping if you’re in the US!).

I don’t know if the colors vary depending on where you get them, but the circles are red and dark blue, squares are green and light blue, triangles are purple and magenta, hearts are pink and red, and diamonds are yellow and orange. Makes for nice mix n match in the bento, for added color when my lunch is bland or dull looking. :)

Amazon also has some Tovolo cups in interesting “holiday” shapes, like pumpkins, trees, gingerbread men… LOL I haven’t gone that crazy yet.

It’s really nice to have a bunch of them so I can make tons of mini meals to freeze, and still have some left over for cooking during the week. Seems like, every meal I make, I tend to put the leftovers in the cups and freeze em, so I can have all sorts of interesting lunch combinations.

Thanks for sharing my suggestion! :)

fit and fresh

I have the Fit and Fresh box and find it alarmingly large for bento. I think it was made more for American sandwiches and pizza. When I use it, it’s for two people.

fit and fresh

I agree; I have it as well and it seems HUGE after using standard bentos. They do have a 4-cup salad one with little utensils in the top and a seperate holder for the dressing. Still big, but not as big.

Bento Box and stuff

A friend gave me two heart shaped silicone cups in fashionable pink and red. I have a laptop lunch box and they just fit. I just started the whole bento thing in April and am loving it. Thanks very much for your website!!

silicone safety

i was just reading an article from care2.com by anne b. bond about the safety of silicone here - http://www.care2.com/greenliving/is-silicone-bakeware-safe-ask-annie.htm... and i thought i’d share it. i like the convenience and reusable-ness of the baking cups, but maybe in a few years we will find out they are unsafe (like so many other products on the market).

Hard to clean after baking!

I purchased two sets of these cups for the purpose of baking adorable cupcakes for a little one’s birthday - they baked well enough, but were so very hard to get clean afterwards! The ridges made it almost impossible to scrub out every last bit of cupcake/muffin crumb. I wound up pitching them in a fit and now I regret it! If only I could have gotten them clean, I could have used them for bento instead! Doh!

Silicone Liners

You can find cute silicone cupcake liners at craft stores and grocery stores too (in the US anyways).

I bought mind at AC Moore (craft supply store), but have also seen them at Michaels (craft supply store), Wegmans (grocery), and Bed Bath Beyond (home retail). You can find a variety of shapes, from hearts to bears to diamond, square, and round liners. I have two types of liners right now. Normal sized cupcake liners in square shapes and round mini-cupcake liners.

Re: Bento item of the week: Silicone cupcake liners

I just found some mini silicone cups at Christmas Tree Shops tonight! I was so excited to find them - even better - they were 12 for $1.29!
My plan was to make some mini cupcakes out of them tonight - I may still try it and see how it goes - I don't have any mini muffin pans and I don't know how they will hold up on their own. I'll definitely be using them for the kids bento meals though!

Re: Bento item of the week: Silicone cupcake liners

World market as them for 2.48 for a set of 6 (i think it was 6) and they had circles and hearts in a bunch of colors :D I just loved the pink hearts :D world market also has bento box (they even say bento box On the label) for 4.99 and they also have a bunch of supplies for bento boxes

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