I don’t frequently try to sell things on this site, but when I was asked to share the news about Panera Bread’s new clean menu, I really wanted to share it with you because I am all for a big company doing the right thing for our diets and our planet. Especially when it means I have another healthy option when trying to feed my busy family away from home!
Clean eating is the IT term right now. You see it everywhere. The term “clean eating” refers to eating without added preservatives, colorings and flavorings; eating food it it’s most natural state. Really its just eating real food, not messed around with. Many of us do this everyday when we cook at home, and most of the recipes on this site would be considered clean. However, its a difficult thing to find when eating on the go.
Panera doesn’t think it should be. They have removed artificial additives from many of their products and plan on removing it from all menu items by the end of 2016. That means when you eat at Panera, you are eating food, not chemicals. You know, the way your parents and their parents and pretty much everyone before 1970 did.
Panera sent me a gift card to try out their new and improved salads which are now as clean as a whistle. I did. Several times. After a few visits my favorites were clear. The Fuji Apple Chicken salad remains my all-time favorite, but the new Power Kale Caesar with Chicken blew me away too.
Then the other day I had one of those classic mom-of-three-year-old-twins sorts of mornings. I walked downstairs to find my little Twinkle Twins snacking on a bowl full of rainbow sprinkles. Colorful balls of sugary wax were dissapearing into their little mouths via large soup spoons, and the hallway from the living room to the kitchen looked like a team of My Little Ponies had galloped down the hall (and maybe done a few other things too). I spent the next hour testing my patience trying to get three-year-olds to pickup, sweet and vacuum a mess they would rather eat. After that I gave up and took my apparently hungry toddlers to Panera for lunch.
My meal was a You-Pick-Two with both of my favorite salads. My dining companions were my rainbow sprinkled little friends. I wanted to snap a pic of me and my salads, and my little ones were more than happy to help out. One problem; three-year-olds are not great about photography composition.
Just in case these beautiful shots don’t give you the real feel for the lovely meal we had, I thought I’d also snap a pic of Miss Magoo stealing my salad. I’m happy that companies like Panera are around so I can still give my kids food I think are worthy of them.