A Nice Surprise at Panera

Today Tina caught wind of a deliciously amazing option at Panera: their Super Top Secret Must-Know-The-Password-To-Order Menu. Okay, it’s not that secret, but somehow it had slipped under our radar. How could Panera, right around the corner from our office, have such a divine bunch of lunch options that we haven’t even heard of?! You can check this menu out in its entirety here, but we’re most excited about their Power Chicken Hummus Bowl.

Seriously, this salad is amazing. It’s about the farthest thing it could be from a wimpy salad for a wimpy meal plan. The nice folks at our Panera location whipped this salad up in a flash and sent us on our way with the perfect lunch. It’s convenient and tasty, but what really caught Tina’s eye were the nutrition facts.

Waiting to be devoured.

Here it is in all its well-balanced and nutritious glory. The Registered Dietitian Stamp of Approval is owed to the fact that this salad has a very near perfect balance of nutritional elements for lunch. The ratio here is 18 grams carbs : 4 grams fiber : 25 grams protein. When grabbing lunch out on the run, it’s very important to check that your meal comes as close to this equation as possible. Most restaurant meals, Tina says, push an overload of carbs, throwing your meal our of proportion. Sticking to the figures above will ensure stabilization of blood sugar, allowing for energy levels to remain constant and for focus to increase after your meal; not to mention, keeping you sustained for a good three to four hours. You won’t be snoozing at your desk after this salad. The chicken is antibiotic-free and plentiful, accounting for the generous amount of protein. Hummus is a cleverly added low glycemic index carb, while the flavor and consistency of it (AMAZING) eases one’s desire for creamy dressing. Plenty of veggies and spinach contribute fiber and antioxidant nutrients.

Panera’s Power Chicken Hummus Bowl gets an A++ rating on Tina’s list. It’s the best choice we’ve seen in a long, long time from a restaurant.

Way to go, Panera. Way to go.

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