Healthy California Style Ramen Bento #UmaiCrate

A free Umai (yummy in Japanese) box of an assortment of Japanese ramen noodles was gifted to the Ninja Baker from the lovely people at All opinions are my own.

Ramen is standard go-to fare for students. Exhausted moms and workers love the miracle noodles, too.  Fast in prep work, tasty to the palate, what’s not to love?

Testament to the yummy factor is the Japanese ramen shops burgeoning all over LA and San Francisco. However, nowhere near the number of ramen shops in Japan. Ten thousand (yes, 10,000!) Japanese noodle restaurants stand.

Similar to California, the health obsession has hit Japan. In my delightful Umai box, I discovered a Healthy Vegetable Ramen tagged Kenko (which means health in Japanese.) Since summer is sizzling in LA, I created a healthy California style ramen bento.  Drained ramen arranged atop avocado and kale with assorted fresh veggies is scrumptious. The crunchy garnish put in the package by brings the bento to perfection. (Of course, the bento can serve as a plated supper for two.)

By the way, all the ramen packages in the are the real deal and made in Japan. So the directions are in Japanese. However, a pamphlet in English provides cooking directions. That’s why the noodles are to quote Goldilocks, “Just right.” 

Serving suggestions accompany the directions in the pamphlet. Mini Bunashimeji Mushroom Udon states fish is the ideal accompaniment to the Japanese noodles.  Shrimp and wild salmon and shrimp sprinkled on top of the ramen are an excellent choice. What kicks it up a notch are the yuzu (Japanese citrus) flavored sesame seeds, which came with my Umai box.

Want to receive a monthly box of Japanese ramen noodles? Visit  If Japanese candy or beauty elixirs from Japan are your penchant, visit You can also check out @japancrate on Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and YouTube.

Healthy California Style Ramen Bento


Kenko in Japanese means health. Ramen is a perfect base for a healthy California style ramen bento!  Especially if the vegetable ramen package from Japan promotes Kenko.

  • 1 package ramen
  • 1 cup shredded (and cleaned!) kale 
  • 1 avocado
  • An assortment of your favorite veggies
  1. Place the ramen in 3 cups of boiling water.
  2. Gently stir occasionally with chopsticks (or a fork.)
  3. After 3 minutes, rinse with cold water and drain in a collander.
  4. Split an avocado in half.
  5. Place on a bed of kale.
  6. Fill the avocado with ramen. 
  7. Garnish with your favorite veggies.
  8. Drizzle with salad dressing, if desired.

Salmon and Shrimp Ramen Salad Bento


Lemon is the standard brightner for fish. But yuzu (Japanese citrus) is fantastic, too! For summer bentos, cold ramen noodles serve as a beautiful base for salmon and shrimp. Add a few vegetables and you've got an easy balanced meal in a bento box.  

  • 1 Cup O' Noodle or similar Japanese noodles like Mini Bunashimeji Mushroom Udon
  • 3 shrimp
  • 3 tablespoons salmon flakes
  • Your favorite veggies 
  • 1 teaspoon yuzu flavored sesame seeds or yuzu juice  
  1. Pour hot water to the fill line of the Japanese noodles. 
  2. Keep covered for 3 minutes.
  3. Stir gently.
  4. Drain while rinsing in cold water.
  5. Place the ramen or similar Japanese noodles into a bento box (or plate.)
  6. Decorate with shrimp and salmon flakes.
  7. Garnish with veggies.
  8. Drizzle with yuzu juice or sprinkle with yuzu flavored sesame seeds.

Wishing you magical surprises. 

The Ninja Baker

© ™ Watkinson 2012

The Ninja Baker has guest blogged and contributed recipes to numerous food sites. These additional recipes can be found here.



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