Panera Bread is one of my favorite Vegetarian-food filled restaurants because they have an online menu that actually labels all of the foods that it has that is both vegetarian and even vegan. That is the reason why I have not made a “Eating Vegetarian At” entry for Panera, because doing so would be rather pointless.
Panera is also very meticulous and detailed when it comes to their ingrediant lists. While some fast foods might list certain items, or whatnot, Panera lists every single ingredient even down to their trace amounts, as well as whether or not they are Organic.
Panera has recently came out with two new high-protein vegetarian options for their menu, a Edamame (soybeans) soup with Soba (buckwheat) noodles, and a broth-based soup with Quinoa (a grain similar to that of rice) and brown rice. They also promised to switch to cage-free eggs by 2020, which is better than eggs farmed from caged chickens, but it still has its issues. It would just be better to go egg-free. It also claims to be getting rid of confinement crates fr pregnant pigs.
The Edamame soup has 370 Calories, 12 grams of Fat, 17 grams of Protein, 7 grams of Fiber, and a large amount of Vitamin A, C, and Iron. The Quinoa soup has 360 Calories, 12 grams of fat, 18 grams of protein, 10 grams of fiber, and a full daily dose of Vitamin A and C.
Both options look fantastic, and while you can probably do better by making a bean and lentil soup from home that would be lower in fat and higher in protein and vitamins (a cup of homemade Lentil soup with tomatoes, kale, carrots, and broccoli is like, 200 Calories, 16 grams of protein, and only 1 gram of fat), for a fast food option however, this is very healthy.
I like the fact that fast food places like this are coming out with more plant-based menu options, which caters to the ever-increasing number of people who eat meat-less meals. This is going to be a slow process, but the consumption of animal products, especially carcinogenic ones like processed meat, may soon be a thing of the past.