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Eating Healthy at Panera Bread

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Egg-White, Avocado and Spinach Breakfast Power Sandwich on a Sprouted Grain Bagel Flat

Egg-White, Avocado and Spinach Breakfast Power Sandwich on a Sprouted Grain Bagel Flat

Panera Bread began in 1981. As of December 31, 2013, there are 1,777 bakery-cafes in 45 states and in Ontario Canada. Each provides fresh all-natural, preservative-free bread baked daily in Stone Deck ovens on hot stone slabs.

Whether you are counting calories, fat, protein, carbs, cholesterol or sugar, Panera Bread will customize your meal with fresh, high-quality foods including antibiotic-free chicken, whole grain bread, select organic and all-natural ingredients, a vast array of beverages (frozen, cold and hot), soufflés, breakfast and panini sandwiches, hand-tossed salads, pastas, soups, Power Meals, Panera Kids items with a choice of squeezable organic yogurt, apple or baguette, and catering. If you have allergies, ask to talk to the manager for a list of ingredients.

Upon my arrival at the Rockford, Illinois, Panera Bread at 9:30 A.M., I was happily greeted by a lovely cashier, Breanna, who informed me about healthy breakfast and panini options, calories, carbohydrates and how I could customize my meal. I ordered a Tomato & Mozzarella Panini, Mediterranean Egg White on Ciabatta, blueberry muffin, Acai Berry iced tea, and a Power Chicken Hummus Bowl to sample with my husband. I did not inform her that I eat at Panera Bread often.

Power Chicken Hummus Bowl

Power Chicken Hummus Bowl

While I was waiting for my food, I overheard a nice lady excited about ordering the Grilled Mediterranean Egg White on Ciabatta Breakfast Sandwich. (Breakfast is available until 10:30 A.M.). I approached the woman and we began conversing. She drives about 31 minutes in traffic just to get this sandwich. Now that’s a big fan! The sandwich includes egg whites, Vermont white cheddar, roasted tomato, fresh spinach and basil pesto on ciabatta with 410 calories.

The Power Bowls were launched off-menu in 2013. All contain fewer than 400 calories and are an excellent source of protein and complex carbohydrates. My favorite is the Power Chicken Hummus Bowl, with antibiotic-free chicken with cilantro, jalapeno hummus, fresh baby spinach, cucumbers, tomatoes, and red onions, finished with freshly squeezed lemon and fresh, chopped cilantro. If you are not a fan of cilantro, Panera Bread will be happy to eliminate this herb for you.

Panera Bread is proud to announce a new arrival on May 7, 2014: the Egg-White, Avocado and Spinach Breakfast Power Sandwich on a Sprouted Grain Bagel Flat. Now that is a mouthful! I absolutely am a fan of avocado and sprouted grain bread so I can’t wait to indulge in this sandwich. While you are at it, try the Tomato & Mozzarella Panini with fresh mozzarella, roasted and fresh tomatoes, chopped basil and all natural-sun-dried tomato pesto in ciabatta with only 370 calories. It tastes like summer and is delicious!

I would like to thank Amanda Burns for answering all my questions about Panera Bread.

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About Roxe Anne Peacock

Roxe Anne Peacock lives in Caledonia, Illinois with her husband, one daughter, a cat, dog, and two horses. They raised five daughters on the five acres and now have eight grandchildren. They are the owners of Top Hat Chimney. Roxe Anne is a member of Sisters in Crime/National, Sisters in Crime/Chicagoland, Guppies, Chicago Writers Association, Windy City Reviews, and In Print. She has approximately 5,000 FB friends and two pages, She has two blogs, Civil War Cooking and Reenacting and The Peacock's Pen which she is still creating. The blog will be about her journey to lose 100 pounds while creating healthy recipes, some of which she might share on this blog. Roxe Anne is the author of two mysteries, Fatal Catch and Leave No Trace which are available on Kindle, Nook and in print. Last week she signed a contract for Fatal Catch for audiobooks. She is also the author of a historical cookbook, History Lover's Cookbook, which has been a top 100 paid Best Seller on Kindle most of 2013-14. She signed a contract for the cookbook to be an audiobook the end of May. It should be completed just in time for her to promote it on Red River Radio with host, Dellani Oakes. It is currently in the process of becoming available in print. Currently, she is working on two more cookbooks which should be available later this summer, Smokin' Good Eats and Cooking to Live.
  • Margot Justes

    Roxe Anne,
    The egg-white sandwich looks wonderful, will have to try it.
    Margot Justes

    • Roxe Anne Peacock

      I am with you, Margot. I can’t wait to try the egg white avocado sprouted bagel May 7th. Thanks for commenting.

  • The Power Chicken Hummus Bowl looks and sounds yummy. I like cilantro, but in small doses so I’d probably ask them to go light on that.

    I’ve never eaten at Panera Bread but they just opened one a few towns over and I’d like to try them. My friend works at one and loves them.

    • Roxe Anne Peacock

      Panera will create to suit your taste. I get together with friends a few times a year at Panera. We have two close to us. I absolutely love hummus so the Power Chicken Hummus Bowl is great for me.

  • Dr Joseph S Maresca

    The hummus is really good stuff when served with herbs,

    • Roxe Anne Peacock

      Thank you for commenting, Dr. Joseph S. Maresca. I absolutely love hummus and know the importance of herbs for your health. I wish more people did.