As a consequence of axial current conservation, fermions cannot be bound in localized lumps in the massless Nambu-Jona-Lasinio model. In the case of twisted kinks, this manifests itself in a cancellation between the valence fermion density and the fermion density induced in the Dirac sea. To attribute the correct fermion number to these bound states requires an infrared regularization. Recently, this has been achieved by introducing a bare fermion mass, at least in the nonrelativistic regime of small twist angles and fermion numbers. Here, we propose a simpler regularization using a finite box which preserves integrability and can be applied at any twist angle. A consistent and physically plausible assignment of fermion number to all twisted kinks emerges.