The Uncle Ben’s® Simple Solutions Contest

‘Simplify Your Life’ with Uncle Ben’s® Ready Rice — and enter to win a $100 of Uncle Ben’s products AND a chance to win a CHEF FOR A WEEK in The Uncle Ben’s® Simple Solutions Contest! Read on to find out how to enter…

With the weather getting warmer and the days getting longer, my family will no doubt be spending more and more time outside.

The only downfall: I tend to find myself scrambling at dinner time because I spent the day playing outside with my girls rather than preparing dinner. Well, this summer I am not going to be scrambling — not with my pantry stocked with Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice!

Ready Rice comes in 16 delicious varieties and each are ready to serve in just 90 seconds! See, no planning needed!!! And with a variety like that, you can certainly find a rice to fit any of your meals.

The two newest Ready Rice varieties, coming this June, are Jasmine and Basmati. These new varieties bring the mouth-watering authentic tastes of India and Thailand right to your dinner table and are definite contenders to be my favorite.

Uncle Ben’s is committed to spicing up and simplifying your life. Would $100 worth of Uncle Ben’s products simplify your life? Of course it would! And that is why we are teaming up with Uncle Ben’s for the ‘Simplify Your Life’ contest!

The ‘Simplify Your Life’ Contest:

Simply leave a comment on this post sharing your tips on how you simplify your life. For example, do you prep a week’s worth of meals over the weekend to make weekday dinners a cinch? Beyond the kitchen, do you use a “chore chart” in your house to get your kids involved in the household chores? Whatever it is, we want to hear it!!!

The Prize: As we mentioned earlier, one winner will be receiving $100 worth of Uncle Ben’s products!

But wait, there’s more: The winner will be entered into a second contest with nine other winners to receive a grand prize — A CHEF FOR A WEEK!

This contest is open to US residents and official contest rules can be found here.

By entering this contest, you are not only entering to win some amazing prizes, but you are also supporting a great cause!

For each tip submitted Uncle Ben’s will donate $1 to Feeding America, the nation’s food bank network and largest charitable hunger-relief organization in the country!!!

So, start submitting those tips! This contest ends on June 1 (11:59 pm EST).


  1. Lee says

    I have four children, so laundry is pretty much a full-time job. To simplify the putting-away stage and teach kids some responsibility, each child has a small round laundry basket. As I fold the laundry during the day, their laundry basket gets filled and is put at the bottom of the stairs. It’s now routine that they take the basket up and unload it then return it with their dirty clothes to the laundry room. This saves me a lot of time by sorting as I fold and getting the bulk of the laundry put away efficiently.

  2. JRG says

    We always have rice cooking in the cooker; it’s an Asian household. As for managing time/food, sometimes we buy sub sandwiches; they last for up to two day in the fridge and are very cost effective.

  3. says

    I like to make a menu on the weekend – but I make sure that some of the meals are easier, that way if something comes up and I have to shift them around, I can do that. We also have one night that is purely a leftover night!

    We like Uncle Ben’s (but would really love that chef!) Please enter me in the contest.

  4. kate says

    I make large pans of ziti, chicken pie, and chicken and dumplings. I freeze them in jumbo muffin tins to have individual servings and once they are frozen, put them in freezer bags! They can go right into the microwave and dinner is ready in less than 5!

  5. says

    each time i make a meal i at least double the recipe (often i will triple or quadruple it!) and i freeze the leftovers in individual servings so we have lots of quick meals for later. it’s such a huge time saver and allows us to eat home cooked meals more often than otherwise.

  6. Alice says

    To simplify my life I always make sure I have a small stock pile of groceries in my pantry. I just buy a couple extra of the non-perishables when I go to the store. That way if I change my mind about what I want to eat one day or if I forgot to get something, I usually don’t have to make a run to the store, but instead can find everything I need in my pantry.

  7. Rebecca says

    I have three kids so I always run out of time in the day. Whenever possible, I spend a couple hours freezing a bunch of meals. Also when I cook a meal, I try to cook at least 2 and freeze one.

  8. says

    Sunday evenings I make a casserole of some type. I cook up a double bath so we have a meal that just needs to be heated up a couple days later. If I am using chicken, I cook up enough chicken for salads the next day… Just a way I simplify my life in the kitchen!

    I also linked this up on Facebook.

  9. says

    When I get home from the grocery store, I chop all my onions at once. Then I put them in snack baggies and freeze them. Then I always have chopped onions ready to go for any recipe. One snack baggie = 1/2 onion

  10. Melissa says

    I often buy meat and poultry in bulk or family packs to save money. I portion out the meat into freezer bags when I get home and often add a marinade to the bag. As the meat thaws in the refrigerator it’s marinated and ready to cook.

  11. says

    I have seven children so everything we do – laundry, cooking, cleaning, mess making is multiplied by a lot! We rotate their chores on a weekly basis. One thing I do to simplify our life is I have taught or am teaching (depending on age) my children to plan meals and cook. My two oldest, ages 13 and 12, can do this all on their own which means I have two out of every six weeks that I don’t have to plan meals or cook! This is a huge blessing especially on those days when I have to be doing something else. I know I can call on them to get lunch or dinner on the table and it they’ll follow through.

  12. says

    i simplify by making a meal plan before i do my weekly shopping so i can be absolutely sure i have all the ingredients i need. i also always cook extras so i have leftovers to eat on nights too crazy to cook

  13. says

    One thing I do to simplify my life is that we make school lunches the night before. One of the older boys oversees dinner clean up, the other starts lunches. The next night, it’s switched. We have a whole job chart/chore rotation thing going like that.

  14. says

    I used to think that making a menu was too time consuming – but I’ve found the opposite to be true. I don’t assign meals to days because I’m fickle and it won’t sound good if it is pre-determined. But I make sure I have the ingredients on hand for 10-15 meals. I write each meal on the frig and cross them off as we use them. I also mix convenience items (like the Uncle Ben’s rice pouches – great for those days I don’t feel like taking 45 minutes to make brown rice from scratch) with home made items and fresh veggies to make things easy and mostly healthy.

  15. says

    I keep the shredder and a garbage can by the door to keep junk mail from nesting on my counters and table. I have also been judging all my belongings on the “if I moved 1/2 way across the world, would I take you with me” basis. Most things don’t make the cut!

  16. says

    I love this rice. It’s simple and easy and good at the same time. I try to make enough for leftovers so i can save on money

  17. Judy J. says

    My tip:
    After dinner when I am preparing the food left for the refrigerator, I divide the leftovers into portion sizes and put them in plastic re-useable containers. Then every morning when packing my husband’s lunch, I just grab one from the frig, pop it into his lunch box with some fresh fruit and veggies and he is good to go. Admittedly, not every husband likes leftovers but mine does, and this simplifies my morning schedule greatly!

  18. says

    I admit, I need to simplify my life more (thanks for all the suggestions!). One thing I do now is plan all my meals ahead of time. I also try to make some of those meals ahead of time or plan crock-pot meals.

  19. says

    I’m a full time mom of two who works freelance jobs from home while my youngest naps or after the kids are in bed. Honestly, I haven’t found a way to simplify my routine yet – constantly scrambling – so here is my first step in the right direction: Please, oh please pick me Uncle Bens, I “simply” need a personal chef to teach me some tricks so that I can provide tasty and yummy meals for my family.

  20. says

    I cook/prep as much as I can in advance–next week I am trying once a month cooking for the first time! I also menu plan every single week and do all my grocery shopping for the week at one time, so I have more time during the week. I am a full-time working mom and I refuse to use those precious hours with my daughter out shopping for groceries or running around like a crazy woman.

  21. says

    I simplify my life by limiting the TV shows I allow myself to be addicted to. And I never watch these when they air, but rather on at my leisure. This way I don’t have to feel trapped into a schedule that I’m not setting up for myself. :-) I also limit volunteer work/ outside activities. Staying home is the simplest!

  22. says

    Not sure if this is available for this giveaway as I don’t see it mentioned, but I’ll try anyway – for extra points, I already subscribe to your newsletters!

  23. says

    I simplify my life by having my dear sweet hubby cut out & organize all of the coupons we have for groceries and other items. He makes it so much easier for us by doing this! It saves me time that I can be doing other household chores and it saves us a lot of much needed $$. I would love to win some Uncle Ben’s!

  24. says

    We just bought a freezer to simplify our lives – now we can stock up on sales, pick blueberries and other produce throughout the summer, and always have freezer-fresh food available to choose from.

  25. says

    I like to make some casseroles and freeze them. When there is a day I won’t have time to make a meal, I can grab the casserole from the freezer in the morning and throw it in the oven at night! :-)

  26. judy brittle says

    Twice a month I gather all the coupons that I have,get the grocery store circulars and find whats on sale that I have coupons for. I jot down meals that I can make for the coming two weeks with whats on sale. Then I check out coupon sites to print coupons I can use this shopping trip. Being on a tight budget I learned its easier for me to plan my meals and shopping trip every other week. I make out my menu and put that on the fridge and those are the dinners we will have. They are in no kind of order,I just cross that meal out as it is made.So far that has been the perfect solution for our family.

  27. says

    I like to prepare our coffeepot the night before and set the timer. I also like to make a grocery list for the entire week so I won’t have to go to the store more than once — that really kills time! (And uses more money!)

    Thanks for the great contest,

  28. Stephanie says

    I love the instant rice; use them for quick lunches on the go. Love the brown rice that I can just heat and add some protein and a side veggie. Feel good eating this way. Thanks for the convenience!

  29. Barbara Leatham says

    When I purchase large amounts of hamburger, I go ahead and brown it all and then freeze it into portions to quickly add with other items for dinner! Also, our family all joins together to do the cleaning…usually done to music!


  30. says

    I plan ahead on meals and grocery shop every other week. That way on the off week I may only need to pick up a couple of fresh items, saves time and money.

  31. says

    Before I go grocery shopping each week, I make up a list of all the meals we will be eating (for dinner) and all the ingredients I don’t have on hand. It saves extra trips to the grocery store and my brain from coming up with a meal each night!

  32. says

    To simplify my life, I make double batches of some meals and freeze half for a quick weeknight meal.

  33. Martha C says

    I have to plan the menu for the week, shop on Sunday and I’m ready to go. My kids love knowing what is for dinner because it’s posted on the fridge and they don’t have to ask. I love these Uncle Ben’s rice! It’s so tasty and easy!

  34. says

    One thing I have found to simplify the after dinner kitchen clean up is to start with an empty sink and dishwasher. Rinse things off and put them in the dishwasher as you are cooking, so there is only a few things to clean up after you eat.

  35. says

    To simplify my some things in my household I have made a master grocery list. I can just print it out and take it to the grocery. No pondering everyweek of what we need.

  36. says

    I do once a month cooking (including rice) and freeze all of the items so that I have a minimum of 4 weeks of food in my freezer for weeks ahead. It saves us so much money and resolves the 5:00pm question my family asks – What’s for dinner?? lol…I love doing OAMC and have even done presentations on it for moms groups. It’s a life saver for us!

  37. Liz says

    We have a menu plan that we follow weekly with a pre-printed shopping list to add to or delete from to make shopping easier.

  38. says

    I make a menu plan at the beginning of the week and do only one trip to the grocery store. By planning ahead I can make sure I’m not wasting food and not wasting time having to go to the store multiple times a week.

    When I know that an upcoming week or two is going to be crazy, I try to make extra food and freeze it so I don’t have to worry about cooking every single night.

  39. Andrea M says

    I plan out menus 1 month in advance…it is such a relief not having to worry about what I am going to make each day

  40. Cortney says

    I cook several extra servings of dinner and freeze the extras for dinners when I’m presse on time.

  41. June Gilbert says

    We eat lots of rice. I often make enough for 2 meals and freeze one – simplifies things magnificently!

  42. kimberly h says

    We write out our menu for the week then shop accordingly,I also go through my coupons ,sometimes that factor in what will be on our menu.We always stock up on sale meat also.That helps for when we may not have as much to spend on groceries in some weeks.

  43. bridget says

    We always plan out our meals for the week and then one of us goes shopping at night when it is not busy.

  44. Ellen C. says

    I get the next day’s breakfast items ready and plan my meals a week in advance. I also try to make extra meals to freeze for a later time. Thanks for the chance.

  45. says

    Tips to simplify my life– I schedule errands to be run on the same day when possible. This not only saves on time, but also on gasoline.

  46. says

    I simplify cooking by cooking a big meal on Monday, and we eat leftovers Tuesday and Wednesday. I am blessed to have a husband who LOVES leftovers!!

  47. jOVITA says

    I use charts to simplify life-
    chore charts
    exercise charts
    whatever I can think of! really helps the boys!!

  48. says

    make a big slowcooker meal. Eat with rice first night and pasta the next. Amazing how just that will change a meal

  49. says

    a great “simple” tip i can share is to buy fruit/veggies when they are on sale. Chop them up in servings baggies and freeze them. that way, when you want squash for dinner, just grab a bag of already-cut veggies and cook! Same with fruit. stock up on strawberries when they are on sale, cut into snack baggies and grab one down in the morning to have for an afternoon snack. you will save time and money bc you bought then on sale!!

    2by2boutique at gmail dot com

  50. Donna says

    I keep a well stocked pantry and freezer. I also add items to the grocery list as I use them.

  51. Renee Concolino says

    We do everything we can for school the night before: make lunches, pick out clothes, pack backpacks, sign notes, and even pick out special items they wish to bring to school. It isn’t rocket science but it helps the morning be a bit less chaotic.

  52. julie g says

    I wash up all my produce and wrap in a paper towel and bag it..It really works and makes my produce last longer:0)

  53. Grandma Deb says

    Oh my yes, when you have a busy and big family- planning out the week’s meals in advance is the way to go. I always sit down, and pick the meals, write them down. Then, make out the shopping list so you have everything you need for the coming week. No last-minute gas-wasting trips to town! It helps VERY much to do this.

  54. Shelly Nissley says

    I plan a week of meals on the weekend, but then also during the week, as I cook, I double & freeze meals that freeze well. Sometimes it is only one or two meals a week . . . but I keep a list of what I have in the freezer and then pull those out on busy days when I can’t or don’t feel like cooking.

  55. Selinda McCumbers says

    We have a menu that we follow so that everything we need is there and defrosted when needed! Helps a lot for our cooking!


  56. Ronda Garnett says

    I simplify our life by realizing I am not super Mom or Super Wife…for instance, the world is not going to come to an end if the windows don’t get washed or the floor scubbed every day…take time to ENJOY life.

  57. says

    I simplify our life by making a menu for each week for meals. I also attempt to make a calendar for each week with everyone’s activities on it so we can plan ahead for rides, pick ups, etc. It doesn’t always work out perfectly but it helps us keep our heads when we are crazy busy!

  58. says

    I cook a feast every Saturday. It is a fun day for everyone in the family. I make so much food! I do not cook much through the week because I make sure there is plenty of left overs to mix and match each evening with only small additions here and there. I like to add Rice because you can just toss it in the rice cooker and forget about it.

  59. says

    I like to make a large portion of Uncle Ben’s Brown Rice to use for at least three meals. It is healthy and affordable. We have switched to brown now, though I do miss white. I really appreciate Uncle Ben’s Brown ready rice! When it is cheap I buy it with a coupon, or stock up at Walmart.

  60. Carol says

    I simplify my life by making lists, and doing many things ahead of time to make my dinner making easy. I chop onions and freeze, and always have a lot in my pantry so I can always make a meal, even if my refrigerator and freezer need some restocking.

  61. says

    I spend a day a week cooking up meals to freeze so it frees me from having to make lunches and cook supper every night.

  62. Barbara M says

    Since I live alone, I cook meals & freeze them.
    Then when I’m short on time I still have a good nutritious meal.

  63. says

    I definitely have my children do chores! I’m a single mom so it’s either I’m miserable or they’re helping! so that’s what we do here. and we eat leftovers. That helps out too!

  64. CM says

    I buy in bulk and meat sales and freeze it. i also cook more and freeze it for quick lunch or dinners.

  65. says

    I simplify life by planning all of our meals on Sunday. This is especially important since I work at night and my hubby does the meals for the kids during the week.

  66. Eloise C says

    We plan our meals for the week based on the weekly grocery ad and buy exactly what we need. We also have a chart for my daughters specifying exactly what she needs to do every single day and place it on the wall for her. Each task she completes, she gets a star and at the end of the week she cashes in all of her stars for rewards. Thanks so much for such a wonderful giveaway!


  67. Marla T says

    When I buy big packages of ground beef, I brown it all at once and package it in 1 lb packages. This really helps save me time on nights when I’m rushed to get a decent dinner on the table. Thank you for the entry.

  68. Aimee says

    As soon as I get home from the grocery store, I wash, dry, and if needed chop and prepare all of the fresh produce I just bought. I find that when I need to grab a quick snack and there are sliced carrot ready to go I will eat those instead of a bag of chips. And I truly believe that having tomatoes sliced and strawberries cut up makes me eat them faster and more frequently so I don’t throw out rotten produce — I hate wasting money! Another thing I hate is chopping onions so I also chop and freeze onions and peppers so they are ready to throw in the pan and I can do all my onions at once. Be sure to put a box of baking soda in the freezer to keep it from smelling like onions. I also wear swim goggles when I chop…I look funny, but it saves my sensitive eyes.

    I am excited about the basmati and jasmine rices. We eat a lot of rice in our home and it is cheaper to make your own thai food and curries and your own rice than go to a restaurant!

  69. Jo says

    Well, I, too, like to use Uncle Ben’s rice. I usually cook a double amount so I can make an old-fashioned rice pudding like my mom used to make. My husband likes to eat rice with sugar and half and half on it.
    But my best use for Uncle Ben’s rice is to make rice bags for achy joints, headaches, tummy aches, etc. These rice bags sort of take the place of ole-time hot water bottles. Hot water bottles and rice bags have cured a lot of ills in my household. I take a tea towel and sew up the three sides leaving a little open to pour the rice in and then I sew it the rest of the way closed.
    The rice bag is warmed in the microwave and is moist heat which is the best kind to cure aches and pains. I even sent one to college with my son.
    So Uncle Ben’s is really useful for nourishment as well as for treating our ills.

  70. Selene M. says

    I simplify my life by doing what I enjoy, not what others think I should do. I know how to say no. I choose meal menus that are easy to do.

  71. Candice says

    For desserts, I offer simple things like fresh fruit or gummy candy. It saves me having to cook something else! :)

  72. says

    I plan out meals at the beginning of the week, and each week I try to plan something that is meant to have leftovers that get used to start another meal (like grilled pork tenderloin one night becomes pork fried rice later in the week). I also do one batch of something for freezer cooking several times a month.

  73. Jennifer C. says

    We simplify by planning out our weekly meals ahead of time instead of waiting until that evening to figure out what to eat.

  74. says

    To make life easier, I try (and stress the word try) to make some meals to stockpile in the freezer. It takes a day to make about 30 meals that I know I can defrost and have a homemade meal in a pinch. Just make a couple of sides and we’re set!

  75. Gloria Dornin says

    I make a dinner so we can do leftovers which saves time and energy

  76. says

    We use a grocery list that is compiled using coupons and the weekly grocery ads. We grill several things at once and use those meats throughout the week. My husband and I limit our television, and the kids. We also share the chore responsibilities, which helps a lot. Every night before bed our kids have to pick up toys for 5 minutes. This helps keep the house clean.

  77. says

    Take all of the recipes that you have collected from newspapers and magazines over the years and place them in a ring binder with plastic coated pages.

  78. Tammy Kennedy says

    We each have a kitchen chore. I also make extras and freeze for a later date. When you make jello or pudding double the recipe and make little jello and pudding cups for meals and kids lunch’s. Also you can make cupcakes with out frosting and freeze for a quick dessert later on same with cookies and brownies.

    Thank you so much


    Happy Mother’s Day To All

  79. says

    That’s one of my top charities! It’s great to know that, just by trying to win, I can help feed someone!

    I simplify by making a list on my computer of all the meals we eat, along with links/cookbook name & page, so it’s easy to plan meals each week and find the recipe.

  80. Samantha Aluse says

    I love Uncle Ben’s and find that we use a lot of rice. My best tip for shopping is to set aside an hour or so on the weekend, get the entire family to nominate meals and snacks for the following week, plan the menu and buy ONLY what is on the list. It keeps us within the budget, everyone gets at least a few meal choices they love, and shopping is ever so much easier.

  81. says

    We plan our menu and shop primarily following ads, but we have enough stocked in the freezer to allow some leeway. Our menus are subject to change.

  82. Zoey says

    We simplify our lives by working together on all our tasks. We have been married for 35 years and have learned to make each daily task a fun event. As an example we shop for groceries together, prepare dinner together, and then sit down at the table and eat together.

    However, I must admit that my husband usually cleans up by himself.

  83. Lorie J. Shewbridge says

    There is only 2 of us in the house right now (the kids are all grown up) but I still like to make huge meals and divide them into smaller portions and freeze them. Then when I don’t have time (or it’s too hot here in FL to cook) I can just defrost & reheat in the microwave.

    I REALLY love the U.B. Ready Rice it’s the best thing since… wait for it… “white on rice”…. you had to know it was coming!! :-)

  84. says

    I keep various fabric tote bags available (and stocked, if applicable) for our various activities. There is the library bag, the “play outside” bag (contains balls, frisbees, sunscreen/bug repellent, etc.), the diaper bag.

  85. crystal says

    I simplify my life by making sure there is enough food for at least a week. That way if i am in town and need something little,i can just run in and grab it.

  86. says

    To simplify my lifeand speed up cooking I have a variety of fresh vegetables
    cleaned, cut up and in containers in the fridge. I do this every
    weekend and make sure that I have enough for the entire week. It saves
    me a lot of time.

    janetfaye (at) gmail (dot) com

  87. says

    I’m a Vegetarian.. and we PLOW through Salad like there is NO tomorrow.. so at the beginning of the week I do a BUNCH of chopping and cutting and Make 2 HUGE salads.. and cover ’em tightly. These serve us all week.
    I love the Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice too. For a meal in a Jiffy, I heat up some “Veggie Chicken” Add some Stir Fry Veggies, Top with Jarred Salsa, serve this atop Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice and I have a Meal in 5 minutes!! Yup.. I’m a GENIUS.. no, not really, but Uncle Ben’s is! hahha

    Thanks for the Chance to win!!

  88. herblady says

    I shop in bulk at Costco and freeze all that the 2 of us can’t eat in a reasonable time. This means we are usually fully stocked with food and fewer trips to the store. I also cook a big meal on Sundays and try to be creative with leftovers. I don’t cook for 2 because it’s more work to be cooking every day. I make a normal recipe and freeze part of it for another no-work meal.

  89. Tamara B. says

    On the weekends I grill and cook extra chicken, brats and beef. I then put them in the freezer bags and all I have to do during the week is defrost, put together a vegetable and some rice or noodles and I have a delicious dinner in thirty minutes.

  90. CMC says

    I buy Family Packs of ground beef and chicken and separate into individual portions (3.5 ozs) of each and pop them in the freezer. It makes it easy to cook for one – or a whole army – and there is no spoilage!

  91. says

    I always have rice on hand, especially brown rice and Uncle Ben’s is the best! We eat lots of brown rice and crushed pineapple or mandarin oranges.

  92. Karin C. says

    I always plan my meals based on how I will be able to make one meal and then use the leftovers for a different meal later in the week. I might roast a chicken on Sunday and on Tuesday make Chicken Tettrazini or chicken pot pie.

  93. says

    To simplify my life, I have taught my daughter how to cook and bake. She is a great helper in the kitchen and she is capable of cooking for the whole family. I also make sure our pantry is well stocked. I usually cook a big batch of meat at a time and use the leftover meat in a variety of recipes such as pizza, salad, creamy sauce for pasta, curry, etc. It saves time & energy, and induces creativity :).

  94. says

    I freeze everything! If it’s a cup of sauce or a leftover hamburger. It goes in the freezer. You never know what you can make it out of and it only costs the price of a baggy if you don’t use it. I tend to dig thru the freezer and plan a meal based on just odds and ends I find. It works great for me!