They’re also a fun way to trick your kids into eating something healthy.

Spend some time looking at photos of amazingly clever and cute bento boxed lunches, and you’ll probably start feeling inspired to make some aesthetic edibles of your own. Unfortunately, that’s often easier said than done.

The tricky thing about making cute bento, especially character bento, is figuring out what type of food corresponds to the shape and shade your artistic vision requires. It’d be so much easier if colors themselves were foods, right?

And that brings us to Ikuji Kamaboko, which has been in business in Toyama Prefecture since 1927 and is the maker of Toto Sheets.

Like the company’s name implies, Ikuji Kamaboko specializes in kamaboko, Japanese fish sausage. But while ordinary kamaboko is sold in cylindrical shapes, the Toto Sheets are instead formed into thin slices roughly 17 centimeters (6.7 inches) in length by nine centimeters in width, and colored in eight dazzling hues.

The sheets are about 0.8 millimeters (0.03 inches) thick, which means that you can use cookie cutters to punch out whatever shape you need to get your bento looking just like you want it. Slicing with a knife is of course also an option, and the pliable nature of the kamaboko means that it won’t crack as you bend, roll, or even braid it.

Individual sheets can be purchased through Ikuji Kamaboko’s online store here for 111 yen (US$1) each, or you can splurge on an eight-pack with one of each color for a discounted price of 741 yen.

Oh, and if you’d prefer for Ikuji Kamaboko to do all of the cute food preparation work for you, bear in mind that it’s also the company that sells the adorable kitty paw-shaped kamaboko bites.

Sources: Japaaan, PR Times
Images: PR Times

Follow Casey on Twitter, where he’s ready for lunch, whether it comes in a box or not.