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Panera, good or bad for weight loss?

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I know that anything in excess isn't good for you, but is panera a good meal choice? If I keep it within my daily caloric limit, is it a good meal for me?

I usually have....

cheddar broccoli soup, half of a turkey sandwhich, and a whole grain baqquet.

I get the turkey on whole grain too. It is 600 calories, and I have it on days when I can fit it in. So good or bad for weight loss?

Edited Mar 27 2008 14:03 by nycgirl
Reason: Moved from Weight Loss to Foods
30 Replies (last)
that whole meal is 600 calories or the turkey sandwich is 600 calories? Seems like a lot of food for 600, considering its mostly carbs and cheese (fatty)...

If the whole thing is around 600, then it looks ok (wouldn't be on a body builders 'to eat list' though), as long as your getting your essential fats and protein your good...

I'd go with the veggie soup or black bean soup instead of the cheddar broccoli... less calories and less fat.... I just had panera the other day and got french onion soup and 1/2 of their roast beef sandwich, no baguette. total calories was about 425... yum :)

EDIT: the whole meal is 600 calories exactly when I logged it on here. And that's on country bread instead of whole grain, bc I was lazy and just logged it as that.


did you check the panera website? 600 cals seems a little low for all that... I ♥ panera and have almost all the calories for their food memorized... lol :)

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Yes; are you sure those are the correct numbers?

Remember that on the panera web site the top nutrition table is for a HALF PORTION ONLY of their meal-- you have to SCROLL DOWN in the pop up window in order to get the portion they actually serve. Ridiculous, and obviously calculated to deceive people. Panera bread is NOT low calorie at all...not even their salads.

If you like it and you can fit it in then go for it.. but I wouldn't be surprised if they are serving more calories than they are listing. =/

looks like you forgot to add that whole grain thing in, that gives me

730 calories... and i'm always very suspicious of places that I eat at and their calorie stats, do you think the teenager making it cares about putting 2.5 slices of cheese? if they put 4 they think they are doing you a favor, but when panera calculated it they used 1 slice, and your ingesting another 200-300 calories...... (my paranoid thoughts atleast)


I enjoy panera. I do the u pick 2 and have a bowl of the black bean soup and a 1/2 of the Salmon salad no dressing. I love it. Only 160 cal for the soup and 170 cal for the salad. Not that bad for eating out and taste too!  ;-)

If you use the Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette its another 70 cal.
forgot to mention no baguette thingy.... always to full anyway.
I disagree - I've eaten Panera at least twice per week through most of my dit and have lot weight consistently. Just gotta be smart about it, all of their nutritional info is on the website (and I have all my favorite meals memorized by now) Here are some of my favorite meals:

Veggie Soup (90cals)

Black Bean Soup (160 cals)

Chicken Noodle Soup (100 cals)

Fuji Apple Chicken Salad (290 cals for a half portion)

Orchard Harvest Salad, no chicken (220 cals for half, 440 for full)

Smokehouse Turkey Panini (350 for half portion)

I use these options when building a you-pick-two meal for between 310 and 510 calories. If you're going to eat a side, go for the apple, about 70 calories I'd guess. The whole grain baguette is another 240 calories (ouch!)

If you can fit this in, and it works for you, and you weigh yourself consistently and you aren't gaining weight, don't let anyone DISCOURAGE you from eating panera!!  Just don't over do it, and stick within your limits for the day.  I've lost 29 lbs, since September 07, I'm now down two 142 lbs, and I eat at panera once, or twice a week, (there is a panera right behind my house).


I just stay within my limit as it appears that you are doing, incorporate it in a healthy, balance diet, and exercise from 1/2 an hour to an hour each day.


Just weigh yourself, and monitor yourself!


Have fun...and don't overdo it!

I DO THE SAME THING STORM....ALWAYS smokehouse turkey, broccli and cheddar or...creamy tomato soup, whole grain baguette....orrrrrrrrrrrr.......fuji apple chicken salad.....great meal for between 500-700 calories.....and if I eat at panera, it is my main meal of the day!


ANd look at it this way, it's better than McDonald's!

Yep, I look at Panera as a special treat meal. It works out great for me because my college friends go to eat their all the time. I can anticipate when we're going to go and plan out my meals for the day so I can have what I want there, but even if we go unexpectedly I know that there are light, healthy options for me to enjoy (i.e. veggie soup, a 1/2 salad, and apple side for under 500 calories) LOVE IT!

Ok well I added it up right I thought...I get the turkey sandwhich plain. SO it is just turkey and whole grain bread. And it is the half too (usually a sliver).

The soup, I should probably switch to a healthier one. UGH! I just love broccoli and cheese, so when I am craving it, panera is great.

The baqquet I could probably go without too...but usually dont :/

Anyways, when I added it up the way I eat it and all, I got 600 calories. But who knows...maybe I should leave 100 calories on days I go there just for some lee-way?

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My friend sent me this awesome website with the unhealthiest choises at various chain restaurants and some health(ier) alternatives.  Here is the link for panera, though you can get to a bunch of different restaurants from here too

I do love panera, but I am a sucker for apple streudel bagels.  SO bad

Panera is perfectly fine, and I must add you can't trust all nutritional info. Their sandwiches include the mayo on them in the nutritional info. Order the sandwich without mayo, subtract, depending on how much they put, 80-100 calories. Their salads also include the dressing in the calculations--170 calories for a plate of field greens, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and onions? Doubtful. Also in the ingredient list that they also provide, it includes the dressing, mayo, whatever fatty extras they add to the otherwise healthy options they provide. Of course the bread going to add some calories, and although per ounce the bread choices seem to have 130-140 calories or so, a half turkey sandwich on country bread has 70 more calories than half on sourdough...the sandwich is obviously slightly larger when on breads like country or whole grain than on the sourdough, so the extra calories make sense. I have yet to figure out how many calories are in the "portion" of french baguette that is the customary side, and the size varies. For such a dense hunk of bread, it must be more than I want for a side item...I eat it sparingly if I do get it. I typically get half a turkey sandwich no mayo, a cup of chicken noodle soup, and an apple-sometimes a classic salad w/dressing on the side, although I have never used the dressing, I use my soup and it's very good. Anyway, you can workout a healthy, diet-friendly meal at most places if you just make sure you know what you're getting when you order.
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Yeah I'm sorry... I'm going to have to say that its good for your weight loss if you truly enjoy it. I'm not trying to lose weight or anything, but I have noticed on virtually all of these threads that when people feel like they are depriving themselves of foods thier diets fail and they gain weight, ironically. It's simple... just don't go over board.

omg, i work at panera! i make all the sandwiches and salads, though the only thing i eat there is the crust of a whole grain baguette. i would have to buy everything else.

I love Panera, if you order the right things, then you should be okay.

On a typical lunch day I'll get the pick two>> 1/2 medterrean veg sandwich & garden veg soup. I'll also get the french baguette but I'll save it for dinner and thow it in a salad or something. But for dinner or a heavier lunch I'll have the whole medterrean veg. sandwich. I think its about 600 calories with 12g fat. Which really isn't too bad. But I'll opt for the apple instead of a slice of bread (too much then).

The website has really good nutritional information. Just avoid the bakery section and your good to go. Also opt. out of cheese or mayo and anything there should be diet friendly (oh, and go for the lowfat soups they offer instead of the regular.)
Personally, I think it is a great choice!  Sure it is a little high in sodium, but if you don't have high blood pressure or other health problems it doesn't make much of a difference.  I love broccoli and cheese soup too and is worth 230 calories IMO and if you like the baguette 140 calories is perfectly fine, it is a great source of fiber and if you are a carby then don't deprive yourself of it.  I actually think you guestimated high at 600 since I would put the half sandwich at around 180 calories (bc you said just turkey, so no mayo), but whatever.  Overall, great source of balanced protein, carbs and fat...very good choice!
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