After two very long cross-country flights, I am here to tell you about the toddler travel hack that I can’t get over: bento box snacks!
I can take zero credit for this idea. I’m not sure where it came from originally but I discovered it on one of my favorite (new-to-me) Instagram accounts to follow, kids.eat.in.color. Kristen Bell shared this post that showcased the bento box snack hack and my jaw dropped at the geniusness of it all. The post went into why she includes apples (clean teeth), blueberries (good mood), bell pepper (immune system), elderberry gummies (immune system), etc…
I found this right before our flight so I included snacks that we had on hand: dried strawberries, Yogis, dates, pepitas, cashews, carrots, bell peppers, apples, craisins, and chocolate candies as a treat. As soon as she started getting antsy on the plane, we handed her the rainbow bento box and she quite literally jumped up and down in her seat and giggled with excitement. She went through each snack, section by section, and finished them off slowly and deliberately. She even at the pepitas, a snack that she has never liked in the past.
Later in the flight, she wanted more snacks so I handed her a container of cut grapes but she insisted that I put them in the pillbox. In fact, we ended up using it for the whole trip! Going forward, we will try to keep this for travel only so that it doesn’t get old. It’s going to be clutch for road trips too.
We happened to have this 14-slot pillbox (that I use for supplements when I travel) which worked perfectly because she could press a little button to open each section instead of having to pry it open with her fingers.
Edit: After reading your comments and feedback, I have included other sectioned options that are not pillboxes. I can see how this is unsafe for small toddlers and apologize for sharing it without considering that. One great idea is to use a covered ice cube tray, or, if you want even more sections, this jewelry organizer box is another fantastic option. Really any craft storage box for smaller items would work too. This is the one I found on Amazon but I bet one trip to Michael’s would result in a bunch of other great options. Any other ideas are welcome!
All of my cousins this weekend told me I should create this as a branded product and sell it. I will not be doing that, but someone should!
Safety note: Amalia is old enough to know the difference between a pill/vitamin and a snack. If your child is younger or doesn’t yet know the difference, obviously use another type of container for snacking so they don’t mistake a real pillbox for their snacks.