Mealtime Help

Six-year-old Ruby Lucken didn’t like different foods touching on her plate. She invented silicone food dividers and started selling them at farmer’s markets. To her family’s surprise, this simple solution is also good for people with special needs or older people who need help at mealtime. The semi-circle cubbies suction onto your plate, but they do more than just keep foods separate. The cubbies create a “wall” to help push food onto a fork or spoon. Make sure to use a plate that is relatively smooth—raised designs or a large lip may prevent the cubbies from sticking. Ruby’s mom, Suzie, submitted Food Cubby to the Grommet’s Citizen Gallery—a place on our site where anyone can share their innovative goods with us. We’re glad they reached out to us, and we can’t wait to see what Ruby comes up with next.

Food Cubby

Food Divider

Mealtime Help

Six-year-old Ruby Lucken didn’t like different foods touching on her plate. She invented silicone food dividers and started selling them at farmer’s markets. To her family’s surprise, this simple solution is also good for people with special needs or older people who need help at mealtime. The semi-circle cubbies suction onto your plate, but they do more than just keep foods separate. The cubbies create a “wall” to help push food onto a fork or spoon. Make sure to use a plate that is relatively smooth—raised designs or a large lip may prevent the cubbies from sticking. Ruby’s mom, Suzie, submitted Food Cubby to the Grommet’s Citizen Gallery—a place on our site where anyone can share their innovative goods with us. We’re glad they reached out to us, and we can’t wait to see what Ruby comes up with next.
Independent Maker
Underrepresented Entrepreneur

Grommet Launch Conversation

Grommet Launch Conversation

  • Suzie
    Suzie

    Hello everyone! I'm proud to introduce Food Cubby to The Grommet. I'd be happy to answer any questions you have!

  • Ramona
    Ramona
    1/27/2016 10:10 AM

    what is the suggested method of washing these?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:23 AM

    @Ramona

    Hi Ramona, They're dishwasher safe (to 300 degrees), so we've put them through the dishwasher dozens of times. However, I usually just give them a quick soapy wash by hand so they're ready to use again!

  • Barbara S.
    Barbara S.
    1/27/2016 10:26 AM

    I have the same question. It's a great idea, but how do you wash them?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:36 AM

    @Barbara S.

    Hi Barbara, You can just throw them in the dishwasher, or give them a quick soapy rinse. Silicone is a great material because it's BPA-free and doesn't support the growth of bacteria. Thanks!

  • Candy
    Candy
    1/27/2016 10:31 AM

    Congratulations on raising a smart and creative problem solver. Will they work on a high chair tray table too?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:38 AM

    @Candy

    Hi Candy,

    Yes, as long as the high-chair tray is clean, smooth and flat. We've had people use them directly on their granite counters or laminate tables, and someone even placed a second order to use them on coated placemats.

    Thanks!

  • Guest
    Guest
    1/27/2016 10:44 AM

    Hi Suzie. Could these be used for portion control for someone on a diet?

    Sally

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:53 AM

    @Guest

    Hi Sally!

    Wow, great idea! In looking at the interior size, it would likely be a 'recommended portion' for most foods. We were told people would find their own uses (including some using it to separate beads in jewelry making!), and it appears you've come up with another! Thanks so much!

  • Adrienne
    Adrienne
    1/27/2016 10:57 AM

    @Suzie I too would love some for portion control. I cup and 1/2 and 1/4 c. measurements would be awesome!

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 11:05 AM

    @Adrienne

    Hi Adrienne, You inspired me to go measure it out, and using 1/2 cup of peas (leftovers in the fridge ;), it filled a Food Cubby almost exactly to the top of the wall and the edges of the semi-circle. So 1/2 cup is the most you could fit inside without flowing over. And a 1/4 cup portion was a single layer of peas, without going up to the top of it. Hope that makes sense, and thank you!

  • Jaime
    Jaime
    1/27/2016 11:50 AM

    Ruby, you are a genius! Can't wait to try these :)

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:01 PM

    @Jaime

    Thanks so much for the kind words Jaime! We think she's a pretty groovy kid as well.

    Even better, she wants to donate half of her profits (after we break even) to Save the Children organization. Thanks for your support in helping her get there!

  • Patty
    Patty
    1/27/2016 12:00 PM

    Suzie,

    I am the Executive Director of Innovation at St. Vrain School District in Longmont, CO. We currently have 24 schools from Elementary to HS involved in STEM initiatives. I would love to have Ruby come speak to our young inventors at our STEM schools. She is a great example of the creative, problem-solver that we are allowing to occur in school! We also have an Innovation Center where students are able to have a place to work, create, prototype their ideas for Clients or In-District projects. Our website is: innovation.svvsd.org or email: [email protected] , 720-494-3969 . I hope to hear from you and Ruby soon! Patty

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:07 PM

    @Patty

    Hi Patty, I'm sure she would love to come visit your school, so I will give you a call soon!

    We know that all kids are amazing creators and have great ideas -- they often just need the support to take those ideas forward, so Ruby knows she was lucky in that sense. We look forward to talking with you! Suzie

  • Charles
    Charles – Grommet Team
    1/27/2016 1:45 PM

    @Patty: So great to hear you are encouraging problem-solving and entrepreneurship. The Grommet recently published a free ebook featuring interviews with 100 of the Makers we've launched through the years. The book features inspiration and information to help entrepreneurs reach their goals. It might also be a useful resource for your students! More info at http://thegrommet.com/press/makers-who-made-it-ebook

  • Andy
    Andy
    1/27/2016 12:35 PM

    Will they work on paper plates?

  • Guest
    Guest
    1/27/2016 12:44 PM

    @Andy Thevideo, I just heard on the video that they do work on paper plates!

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:46 PM

    @Andy

    Hi Andy, I noticed that The Grommet noted that it works on paper plates in their product overview, so they must have tested it themselves. I just did as well, and turns out that it does! (I tried it on a Dixie plate that has the smooth coating on it, instead of just the pure paper plates.) I'm even having a harder time pulling it off than with dinner plates, so you'll definitely want to use the tabs on the very ends to release the suction! Thanks!

  • Nancy
    Nancy
    1/27/2016 12:49 PM

    Does liquid flow under the cubby? Such as gravy or juicy stuff, will it stay in place?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 1:39 PM

    @Nancy

    Hi Nancy, in all of the tests we've done (oily salad dressing, melted butter, juicy applesauce, etc), the liquid did not flow under it -- the Food Cubby stayed in place. That was Ruby's whole purpose in creating it! You can see more photos with examples on our Food Cubby web site. Thanks!

  • Mary
    Mary
    1/27/2016 6:50 PM

    @Suzie I just love this idea! Are the Food Cubbys flexible enough that they can be made more curved so that they can fit on smaller plates, such as a salad plate?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 8:59 PM

    @Mary

    Hi Mary - They are somewhat flexible, but not in the sense you're hoping for... We'll just have to keep that suggestion in mind for future shapes/sizes! Thanks!

  • Gail
    Gail
    1/27/2016 9:04 PM

    Thank You for creating them. I hate runny type food, or sauces on my plate. They always run into my food, then I usally use separate dishes. Now I can put it all on one plate.

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 11:37 PM

    @Gail

    Hi Gail,

    Well thanks to you as well for trying them out! Ruby's vision was that the Food Cubby also might help people be a little "greener" -- whether by not washing additional bowls or dishes (as in your case), or by keeping people from buying plastic divider plates which eventually get tossed out (as in our case!). Great to hear from you!

The launch day conversation has ended. Please direct further questions about this Grommet to our Community Experience Team.

 

Food Cubby

Food Divider

Mealtime Help

Six-year-old Ruby Lucken didn’t like different foods touching on her plate. She invented silicone food dividers and started selling them at farmer’s markets. To her family’s surprise, this simple solution is also good for people with special needs or older people who need help at mealtime.

The semi-circle cubbies suction onto
your plate, but they do more than just keep foods separate. The cubbies create a “wall” to help push food onto a fork or spoon. Make sure to use a plate that is relatively smooth—raised designs or a large lip may prevent the cubbies from sticking.

Ruby’s mom, Suzie, submitted Food Cubby to the Grommet’s Citizen Gallery—a place on our site where anyone can share their innovative goods with us. We’re glad they reached out to us, and we can’t wait to see what Ruby comes up with next.
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Grommet Launch Conversation

  • Suzie
    Suzie

    Hello everyone! I'm proud to introduce Food Cubby to The Grommet. I'd be happy to answer any questions you have!

  • Ramona
    Ramona
    1/27/2016 10:10 AM

    what is the suggested method of washing these?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:23 AM

    @Ramona

    Hi Ramona, They're dishwasher safe (to 300 degrees), so we've put them through the dishwasher dozens of times. However, I usually just give them a quick soapy wash by hand so they're ready to use again!

  • Barbara S.
    Barbara S.
    1/27/2016 10:26 AM

    I have the same question. It's a great idea, but how do you wash them?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:36 AM

    @Barbara S.

    Hi Barbara, You can just throw them in the dishwasher, or give them a quick soapy rinse. Silicone is a great material because it's BPA-free and doesn't support the growth of bacteria. Thanks!

  • Candy
    Candy
    1/27/2016 10:31 AM

    Congratulations on raising a smart and creative problem solver. Will they work on a high chair tray table too?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:38 AM

    @Candy

    Hi Candy,

    Yes, as long as the high-chair tray is clean, smooth and flat. We've had people use them directly on their granite counters or laminate tables, and someone even placed a second order to use them on coated placemats.

    Thanks!

  • Guest
    Guest
    1/27/2016 10:44 AM

    Hi Suzie. Could these be used for portion control for someone on a diet?

    Sally

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 10:53 AM

    @Guest

    Hi Sally!

    Wow, great idea! In looking at the interior size, it would likely be a 'recommended portion' for most foods. We were told people would find their own uses (including some using it to separate beads in jewelry making!), and it appears you've come up with another! Thanks so much!

  • Adrienne
    Adrienne
    1/27/2016 10:57 AM

    @Suzie I too would love some for portion control. I cup and 1/2 and 1/4 c. measurements would be awesome!

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 11:05 AM

    @Adrienne

    Hi Adrienne, You inspired me to go measure it out, and using 1/2 cup of peas (leftovers in the fridge ;), it filled a Food Cubby almost exactly to the top of the wall and the edges of the semi-circle. So 1/2 cup is the most you could fit inside without flowing over. And a 1/4 cup portion was a single layer of peas, without going up to the top of it. Hope that makes sense, and thank you!

  • Jaime
    Jaime
    1/27/2016 11:50 AM

    Ruby, you are a genius! Can't wait to try these :)

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:01 PM

    @Jaime

    Thanks so much for the kind words Jaime! We think she's a pretty groovy kid as well.

    Even better, she wants to donate half of her profits (after we break even) to Save the Children organization. Thanks for your support in helping her get there!

  • Patty
    Patty
    1/27/2016 12:00 PM

    Suzie,

    I am the Executive Director of Innovation at St. Vrain School District in Longmont, CO. We currently have 24 schools from Elementary to HS involved in STEM initiatives. I would love to have Ruby come speak to our young inventors at our STEM schools. She is a great example of the creative, problem-solver that we are allowing to occur in school! We also have an Innovation Center where students are able to have a place to work, create, prototype their ideas for Clients or In-District projects. Our website is: innovation.svvsd.org or email: [email protected] , 720-494-3969 . I hope to hear from you and Ruby soon! Patty

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:07 PM

    @Patty

    Hi Patty, I'm sure she would love to come visit your school, so I will give you a call soon!

    We know that all kids are amazing creators and have great ideas -- they often just need the support to take those ideas forward, so Ruby knows she was lucky in that sense. We look forward to talking with you! Suzie

  • Charles
    Charles – Grommet Team
    1/27/2016 1:45 PM

    @Patty: So great to hear you are encouraging problem-solving and entrepreneurship. The Grommet recently published a free ebook featuring interviews with 100 of the Makers we've launched through the years. The book features inspiration and information to help entrepreneurs reach their goals. It might also be a useful resource for your students! More info at http://thegrommet.com/press/makers-who-made-it-ebook

  • Andy
    Andy
    1/27/2016 12:35 PM

    Will they work on paper plates?

  • Guest
    Guest
    1/27/2016 12:44 PM

    @Andy Thevideo, I just heard on the video that they do work on paper plates!

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 12:46 PM

    @Andy

    Hi Andy, I noticed that The Grommet noted that it works on paper plates in their product overview, so they must have tested it themselves. I just did as well, and turns out that it does! (I tried it on a Dixie plate that has the smooth coating on it, instead of just the pure paper plates.) I'm even having a harder time pulling it off than with dinner plates, so you'll definitely want to use the tabs on the very ends to release the suction! Thanks!

  • Nancy
    Nancy
    1/27/2016 12:49 PM

    Does liquid flow under the cubby? Such as gravy or juicy stuff, will it stay in place?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 1:39 PM

    @Nancy

    Hi Nancy, in all of the tests we've done (oily salad dressing, melted butter, juicy applesauce, etc), the liquid did not flow under it -- the Food Cubby stayed in place. That was Ruby's whole purpose in creating it! You can see more photos with examples on our Food Cubby web site. Thanks!

  • Mary
    Mary
    1/27/2016 6:50 PM

    @Suzie I just love this idea! Are the Food Cubbys flexible enough that they can be made more curved so that they can fit on smaller plates, such as a salad plate?

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 8:59 PM

    @Mary

    Hi Mary - They are somewhat flexible, but not in the sense you're hoping for... We'll just have to keep that suggestion in mind for future shapes/sizes! Thanks!

  • Gail
    Gail
    1/27/2016 9:04 PM

    Thank You for creating them. I hate runny type food, or sauces on my plate. They always run into my food, then I usally use separate dishes. Now I can put it all on one plate.

  • Suzie
    Suzie – Special Guest
    1/27/2016 11:37 PM

    @Gail

    Hi Gail,

    Well thanks to you as well for trying them out! Ruby's vision was that the Food Cubby also might help people be a little "greener" -- whether by not washing additional bowls or dishes (as in your case), or by keeping people from buying plastic divider plates which eventually get tossed out (as in our case!). Great to hear from you!

The launch day conversation has ended. Please direct further questions about this Grommet to our Community Experience Team.