Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

The Guy Does Bento is back! This is one he made just for himself on a day I was feeling too sick to eat much of anything. Now that I am slowly getting my appetite back, just looking at it makes my mouth water.


The bento features two of our favorite bento items: Chicken Karaage (leftovers - he made them himself the night before) and 1-egg tamagoyaki. The tamagoyaki here turned out a bit on the brown side, but The Guy says it was still very good. He’s filled out the rest of the bento with boiled broccoli and plain rice. He put a a bit of peeled broccoli stalk on top of the rice to add color. Notice he put in only one section’s worth of rice, packed in a bit loosely, to compensate a bit for the fried chicken. Overall this bento is probably around 700 calories, even though he did smoosh in as many pieces of chicken as he could. (There’s a couple of pieces tucked under the tamagoyaki too!)

Here’s a dramatic closeup.


The box used is the LunchBots Quad. The Guy likes bento boxes with compartments, like this one and the Idea box (the latter one may be his favorite of them all) because it helps him to organize the food without thinking about it too much.

Tip: To keep chicken karaage as crispy as possible in a bento box, make sure it, and any other food packed in the box, has cooled down completely before you close the lid. The rice in particular needs to be completely cooled, to room temperature or less, otherwise the condensation from it will make your chicken a bit soggy. It will still taste good though! That’s the beauty of karaage over other deep fried chicken methods.

Check out the rest of the Guy Does Bento series!

For more bento recipes, ideas and tips, subscribe to Just Bento via your newsreader or by email (more about subscriptions).

And visit our sister site, Just Hungry for great Japanese home recipes and more.


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Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

That really does look like a tasty bento! I've been having bento lunches at uni and it's something I look forward to during the day :)

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Nice job, Guy!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Yay, an easy starter Bento I can make with what I have in the house. Your book arrived last week, and I am so excited to mark the pages that have these recipes! Thank you for a wonderful resource. Hope you feel better soon.

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

If you have the book, try the chicken karaage variation with the green onion sauce in there. I swear, it's out of this world ^_^

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

I'm new to bentos. I just received my medium size (850ml), black, Ideal bento box from Bento&Co, and now planning which yummy items to fill it with. I also ordered a 4-pack of tiny animal bottles that you can fill with sauces hahaha. I plan to do some fun grocery shopping tomorrow!

btw: I had to email Bento&Co to ask if they still carry the medium or large sized Ideal boxes. They promptly replied and explained the maker of that box stopped making that product in 2011! They had only one medium left and so they removed the link from the website, then mailed to me the link so I could be sure to get the item. Very kind of them!!! So if you don't see an exact size of an item you want, best is just ask them; they may be able to help!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Thank you for posting this! My son would love it because it has his least disliked vegie, broccoli :) Maybe next week.

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Looks tasty! If I were making this for me, I'd drop one of the proteins in favor of another vegetable. I've made quite a few tamagoyaki so far, but I haven't tried your Chicken Karaage yet. I should - it looks really good!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

The bento restaurant I work at has a menu item called Tatsuta-age. I was wondering if you knew the difference between that and karaage? Or at they pretty much the same thing?

Idea/Ideal bento box manufacturer out of business

Inspired by your blog, I bought the Ideal bento box (as it's called on Bento & Co's site, along with the name "Shikiri Bento"). I learned that, unfortunately, the manufacturer has gone out of business, and the distributor, Bento & Co., is selling the last of them. Only the small, kiddie size is left. :-( I wish another company would buy the rights to start making it again, because it's GREAT!

I've really enjoyed filling the compartments with several foods of various colors, deciding which of the mix-and-match compartments I'll use today. I'm not much into cooking at all, but the bento box has gotten me at least to make red-cabbage slaw, steam some broccoli, and do a few other low-effort food preparations that I wouldn't have bothered with for lunch before. And it's fun to put in small amounts of favorites like pickled pearl onions and roasted red pepper from jars.

Because I have only the kiddie size, I bring my entree separately and use the bento box for side dishes. It works well, since I like to break my lunch into 2 mini meals anyway.

Thanks for the inspiration, and I'm glad you're starting to feel better!


Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

I like that he added broccoli for color. Not something many people would think of!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Your post just made me hungry. I really have to buy a bento box myself which will be useful too when my girl starts school. Ah, this just looks so delicious!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Oo that looks good. I didn't know you have been sick; I'm so sorry. That sucks. I hope all is much better.

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

I have a question for you guys.. Just like 90% of all Germans, we don't own a deep fry and I'm not planning to buy one (especially since I'm moving to Norway in August).
Is it possible to instead fry the chicken/etc in a Wok pan with lots of oil? It doesn't matter if it goes a tiny bit less crunchy, as long as the taste will be good.

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

You don't need a deep fryer to fry foods at home. You can use a Dutch oven or similar heavy pot, but it needs to be heavy so that the heat will be evenly distributed. To compensate, you'll also need a thermometer that can be affixed onto your pot, to keep an eye on the oil temperature. And don't forget, make sure you put the food in carefully, with tongs or the like.

Hope this helps!

P.S. Check out my blog, Conquering the Cookbook on Tumblr and follow me, if you can! I'll be updating tomorrow and hopefully every Sunday!

Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Nothing beats the combination of katsu and those Japanese potato balls in bento!

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Re: Guy Does Bento no. 7: Chicken karaage bento

Would this keep in the fridge or should it always be cooked fresh the night before?

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