Stock a smart pantry to stay on track
TORONTO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–At the start of 2017, many of us vowed that this year would be
different. In 2016, we were too busy to grocery shop, our kids turned
their nose up at dinner – so we caved and got takeout more than we’d
like to admit. But this year it was going to be different. We were going
to eat better, take proper care of ourselves and our families, and not
fall into the same traps. But chances are old behaviours have already
started rearing their heads, prompting many of us to ask: what am I
You’re doing nothing wrong. Contrary to popular belief, it can take
anywhere from 18 to over 250 days to form a new habit. Every single one
of us operates on a different timeline, which means our environment
greatly influences our success. And when it comes to forming new eating
habits, what we keep in our kitchen – or put in our pantry – can sway
what we actually end up eating.
Not to mention, getting a meal on the table during the week is no easy
task. There is a reason why dinnertime has earned the title of the
“witching hour.” From picky eaters, to turning into a short-order cook,
or being just too tired to shop, these parental pain points have us
yearning for a mid-week win. Well, wait no longer. Help is on the way,
with the Minute Rice® #WeekdayWin Challenge. Need a 15-minute recipe for
a real? A meal your picky eater will actually eat? Our #WeekdayWin
network – a community of moms, foodies and family experts – has the
answers. For the next eight weeks, our network will uncover the best,
mom-endorsed recipes and meal planning tips to solve the most common
pain points for Canadian families. Sourced from their community of moms,
our network will help families across Canada to create a new habit with
simple meals they can feel good about. After all, who knows better than
So just what are those dinner time dilemmas for parents?
Shop your pantry for that mid-week win.
Recent Canadian Minute Rice® Research confirms that eight-in-ten women
(82%) say that when they’re too busy to grocery shop, they rely on a
stocked pantry with key items like rice, pasta or olive oil to prepare
easy, wholesome meals at home. As much as many of us romanticize the
idea of the daily, European-style shop, our busy North-American lives
rarely – if ever, during the week – allow for it.
“When you spend as much time online as we do, you can be lured into
falsely believing that every meal you make needs to be an original
creation, with carefully-sourced ingredients that were bought day-of,”
says family food blogger and #WeekdayWin Network member Julie Albert,
who co-founded Bite
Me More with her sister Lisa Gnat. “We love cooking like that
occasionally, but we can’t do that every day. Our pantries are packed
with simple basics that we can quickly match up with a few other
ingredients to satisfy our families when we have lots of other things
going on,” echoes Lisa.
Kid Friendly meals? The struggle is real.
Every parent has experienced it in one form or another – the long-faced,
pouty-lipped expression coupled with an “I don’t want to eat this” (or
on worse days a “you can’t make me.”) Minute Rice’s study reveals that
nearly four-in-ten parents admit to struggling to find kid-friendly
meals their family will eat, and 36% avoid dinnertime altercations
altogether by preparing a different meal or dinner for their kids than
they do for the adults.
If the adults want fish and veggies with rice, it’s easy enough to
substitute scrambled eggs in place of fish, or fruit in place of
veggies, without having to create a second full meal from scratch.
Interestingly also, a person’s willingness to do this may somewhat
depend on where they live: the research shows that people in Ontario are
almost twice as likely to customize meals for kids as those from the
“Between school, work, and activities many parents have limited time
with their kids these days,” says Julie. “Many simply don’t want to
spend family time fighting over dinner. Pantry ingredients like instant
rice allow for easily adaptable meals that every member of the family
In keeping with these sentiments, the majority of women (79%) feel that
meals they can make at home in 15 minutes, with fewer ingredients, make
their life easier during the week. And simple ingredients can help solve
that dinnertime dilemma.
Wholesome doesn’t have to be pricy.
The study also revealed that 67% of Canadians want their family to eat
wholesome and natural foods, but they feel it’s expensive to do so
consistently. In reality, it doesn’t have to be. There are many
wholesome foods available that don’t cost an arm and a leg – and many of
them can live in your cupboard, which can come as a surprise to some
For example, half of us don’t know that instant rice is simply rice
that’s been partially pre-cooked, a fact men and women equally agree on.
One in four of us admit to not knowing what instant rice is at all.
“Rice is a grain we’ve been eating for thousands of years, that is
simple, delicious, naturally fat-free, gluten-free, and non-perishable,”
says Norma D’Onofrio, Senior Brand Manager, Minute Rice. “Our instant
rice is just rice that’s been partially pre-cooked and dried so that
people can save time at home. No additives, and it’s just one
ingredient. It’s really that simple.”
This means that those who stock their pantry with staples such as
instant rice are in a position to save cooking-time, while also eating a
wholesome grain that’s been around for ages.
“Once you’ve decided that rice is going to be a part of the family meal,
you only have to select a veggie and a protein to complete your plate,”
says Lisa. “A simple solution is imagining your meal in terms of
‘thirds’. Pairing a grain, a serving of vegetables and a protein – like
beef or chicken – can be your family’s formula to making dinner time
easy in three simple steps.”
What’s your #WeekdayWin?
Most Canadians decide what’s for dinner about an hour before they start
cooking, and when you’re in the middle of your busy week, it’s fair to
assume that creativity is waning. So start your year off right by
following #WeekdayWin for our network’s inspiration, tips, and the
winning mom-tested recipes tasted and scored by our network of savvy
moms and Canadian families. And there’s more. This February 8th,
Bite Me More will provide some mid-week inspiration on our Facebook
Live debut which tackles 15 minute meals (for real). Need further
motivation? Visit MinuteRice.ca
for versatile, delicious and easy 1-2-3 meal ideas and see our network
You’ll soon get used to the satisfaction of consistently getting a meal
on the table that’s good for your family – and that you can feel good
about serving. Achieved your first Weekday Win? Celebrate with us and
share your #WeekdayWin to inspire others. We’ll bask in your glory, and
you may even have the opportunity to be showcased on our site.
About Minute Rice:
Made by the Catelli Foods Corporation, Minute Rice pre-cooked instant
rice is available in tastes and formats that suit all palates.
Wholesome, 100% Natural, Premium Long Grain White Rice; Premium Whole
Grain Brown Rice – that’s ready in ten minutes; convenient Ready to
Serve Cups; flavourful Basmati and Jasmine varieties. For more
information, visit MinuteRice.ca.
About the Research Study:
A survey of 1578 Canadians was completed online between November 28th
and December 1st 2016 using Leger’s online panel, LegerWeb. A
probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of
+/-2.5%, 19 times out of 20.