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    Brunch at Panera Bread ~ Gluten-Free!

    Today I went to Panera bread to meet up with a couple of friends. I am always leary of places like this because there is such a large potential for cross-contamination with gluten due to all of the bread in the place (and in the name of the establishment ;) ). However, I received an email the other day from a nice woman, named Pat, at Panera Bread who gave me a list of items on their menu that would be safe for me to eat, proper precautions taken to avoid CC, of course. It was nice to have a choice of what I wanted to eat and drink, not be “forced” to make a decision based on the one or two things that were GF. Here is a list of what gluten-free items they have:

    GLUTEN FREE LIST – Panera Bread **

    **Although we do our very best to meet your special requirements, we cannot rule out the possibility of cross contact between these items and gluten-containing foods in our bakery-café.

    Salads: (including the salad dressing)
    (source of modified food starch is corn)
    Greek Salad
    Fandango Salad
    Caesar Salad (without croutons)
    Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad (without croutons)
    Asian Sesame Chicken Salad (without Won Ton noodles)
    Classic Cafe Salad
    Strawberry Poppyseed Salad
    Strawberry Poppyseed Salad with Chicken
    Fuji Apple Chicken Salad
    California Mission Chicken Salad
    Orchard Harvest Chicken Salad

    Soups:
    Low Fat Vegetarian Black Bean
    Cuban Black Bean and Lentil
    Vegetarian Roasted Red Pepper & Lentil
    Vegetarian Butternut Squash
    Creamy Tomato (without croutons)
    Low-Fat Vegetarian Southwest Tomato & Roasted Corn
    Turkey Chickpea Chili
    Summer Corn Chowder

    Salad Dressings:
    Balsamic Vinaigrette
    Caesar
    Greek
    Poppyseed
    Raspberry Vinaigrette
    Asian Sesame Vinaigrette
    White Balsamic Vinaigrette
    Roasted Garlic & Meyer’s Lemon Vinaigrette

    Beverages:
    Coffee
    Juice, both apple and orange
    Lemonade
    Milk
    Soda, fountain and bottled
    Tea, regular and Chai Tea
    All lattes & Frozen beverages
    Strawberry Smoothie

    I ended up enjoying the Low Fat Vegetarian Black Bean Soup and Half Asian Sesame Chicken Salad (sans wontons & sesame seeds) and a Chai Latte to drink. It was amazing. I know that may seem silly, it is just soup and salad. I think it was more the experience. I have been gluten-free almost 3 years and have never eaten at Panera during that time. I am glad I took this step and have another choice to add of my list of establishments that I can dine out at. BTW, I have never had a Chai Latte before, anywhere, and it was TDF! I will be chosing that to drink more often, for sure!

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