These bento are just too cute to eat.
Kyaraben is the Japanese word used to refer to those incredibly cute and very impressive bento (boxed lunches) based on popular anime, cartoon and mascot characters (the word kyara is derived from the English word “character”). Pictures of these eye-catching food-art masterpieces can be found all over the internet, and odds are you’ve seen your fair share. But have you ever seen someone make a kyaraben? It’s actually a pretty interesting process to watch and thanks to a great Japanese YouTube channel, you can witness an expert kyaraben maker create some amazing works of edible art.
Okaeri Recipe Channel
On the YouTube channel Okaeri Recipe Channel you’ll find a whole range of cooking tutorial videos. There’s cooking videos showing you how to make traditional Japanese dishes, sweets, Western cuisine, and of course, kyaraben. The great thing about Okaeri Recipe Channel is that the person making the videos always includes a complete list of the ingredients used in the video (check the video description) in both English and Japanese, which means not only is it easier to try the recipes on your own but you can also use these videos to study Japanese.
Even if you don’t intend to make your own kyaraben watching these videos can actually be pretty entertaining, and even in its own unique way, relaxing. So, here’s a small selection of some of the more interesting videos on Okaeri Recipe Channel.
First off, here’s a fun video teaching you how to make a kyaraben based on the character Totoro from the popular Studio Ghibli film My Neighbor Totoro (Tonari no Totoro).
Here’s a Pokemon kyaraben, complete with Pikachu.
Here’s a kyaraben of Baymax from Big Hero 6.
Here’s one of the Sanrio character Pompompurin.
Here’s a Spiderman kyaraben.
Here’s one of the minions from the Despicalble Me franchise.
Here is a kyaraben of Saitama from the popular anime series One Punch Man.
And finally, here’s a cool kyaraben based on Super Mario himself.
If you would like to see more impressive kyaraben or perhaps a variety of other interesting cooking videos, make sure to check out Okaeri Recipe Channel.