Panera is Vegan Friendly?!?! (!!!)

Yes, it is.

I somehow went to Panera twice this month, and was surprised to find vegan friendly items on the menu! Before going, I looked up the words “Panera,” “Vegan,” and “Items,” and was irritated by the lack of items (there was only one). Nevertheless, I went and ordered it anyway.

Just because I don’t want you guys to think I’m stalling, I’ll just come out right and say it. They’re the Broth Bowls.

The first one is a modified broth bowl, with quinoa and lentils. It normally has chicken, and for vegetarians, there is a cage free egg version. When I ordered it, I explicitly said that I didn’t want an egg either, and the lady at the register was very kind and said she would say to omit the egg and chicken from it. It still came out with an egg floating in it.

Don’t worry! My dad ate the egg. 
If you look at my plate you’ll notice a roll covered in oats, which I asked for, but I was randomly given the ordinary bread as well, for no extra charge…hehe. The grainy roll is called the Sprouted Grain Roll and is delicious, as well as the broth bowl itself. Even in the summer, in a place as hot as Texas, I still get cold indoors, and I find myself gravitating to hot entrees occasionally as a way to stay warm while I’m in the restaurant. Especially Panera, that I feel is always way colder than necessary. 
The next time I went to Panera was the sad day that my family dropped me off at college- and while it is nice to be here in college officially and living on my own, this meal was really silent and a gloomy cloud was above the lunch table the whole time. 
But back to the food! The other broth bowl that I didn’t have to modify at all (yeah, its great) was the Soba Noodle Bowl with Edamame. I got a sprouted grain roll on the side again. This was entirely vegan and my personal favorite between the two. Even though I know too much soy is bad in any diet, and that vegans are a bit more prone to consuming too much soy for their own good, I had to give it a go and don’t regret it one bit. 

What won me over was the variety of color in the bowl. I am completely in accord when doctors and nutritionists recommend a colorful diet. Not to mention the fact that it had food near the surface of the broth, and not just sinking at the bottom. So for more food in the same size bowl, I was happier with this meal. And the grain roll wasn’t behind either. This time the bread was warm!

Knowing more mainstream restaurants and chains carry vegan friendly options makes eating out so much easier for me, so I hope I helped some vegans out there who may have to eat on the run!

Thanks for reading!

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