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What’s in Panera’s Flip Flop Cookie?

In this series, “Eating out: What’s in it?” we will be going over how you can figure out for yourself if something is unhealthy. Today we are taking a trip to Panera Bread.

 

 

 

1. Check the menu

In more and more urban and developed cities, some nutrition information is being publicly displayed on the menu. Look for numbers or symbols next to the menu item.

Examples:

  • “S/M 270/560 cal”     — this could be found right after a soup, indicating that the small bowl is 270 calories, while a medium is 560.
  • “V,” “SF,” or “GF”     — could all be common allergy indicators / show dietary preferences (vegan, soy free, gluten free)
  • “high fib”     — your food or drink has a high amount of fiber per serving

These indicators are convenient and effective ways of narrowing down choices.

 

 

 

2. Go online

If you are eating at a chain restaurant, you can almost guarantee they will have the nutritional info on their websites. Some even have ingredients, and most include a common allergen guide.

In this case we have an extensive amount of information online for all of Panera Bread’s products.

 

  1. Go to their website
  2. On the main menu hover over “Menu Items” and select Pastries & Sweets
  3. Find and click on “Flip Flop Cookie.” Here you will find the nutrition details and ingredients.

 

 

 

Summaries- Nutrition (per cookie):

  • 450 calories

For a dessert, this is low or medium calorieA unit commonly used to measure the amount of energy that is... More, depending on the person and context.

 

 

  • 21 grams of fat, 13 of which is saturated, 1 grams trans fat

Bread is mostly carbs, but the higher calorie deserts have more fat. Unfortunately there is some trans fat in this cookie, which should be avoided.

 

 

  • 55mg of cholesterol, and 190mg of sodium

This does have some sodium in it, which is good to know if trying to avoid salt.

A little bit of cholesterol. This does occasionally pop up in bread.

 

 

  • 62g of carbs, 1 of which is fiber, and 35 of which is sugar (the remaining is starch)

Not a good sugar to fiber ratio.

See also: How to Understand and Apply the Nutrition Facts

 

 

  • 4g protein

Most deserts are high carbs and high fat, with not very much in the way of protein.

 

 

  • Lastly, 15% of the DV for Vitamin A, 0% of your daily Vitamin C, 0% for Calcium, and 8% of your Iron

An OK amount of these 4 micronutrientsSomething we need in very small amounts to stay alive. The e... More.

 

 

  • 0mg of Caffeine

Oh man!

 

 

Our approximate macro breakdown (calculated by calories, not grams): 42% fat, 54% carbs, 4% protein.

See also: How are Nutrients and Calories Rounded?

 

 

 

Summaries- Ingredients:

 

Our ingredients (to avoid confusion, I indented ingredients that composed other ingredients, and unique ingredients are red [vocab word] or blue):

 

  1. Flip Flop Cookie
    1. Unbleached Enriched Wheat Flour
      1. Wheat Flour
      2. Niacin
      3. Reduced Iron"[Iron] prepared by reacting ground ferric oxide with hydrog... More
      4. Thiamine Mononitrate
      5. Riboflavin
      6. Folic Acid
    2. Butter With NaturalThis term, to be honest, does not mean much. It simply means... More Flavor
      1. Cream
      2. Natural Flavor
    3. Enriched Wheat Flour
      1. Wheat Flour
      2. Malted Barley Flour
      3. Niacin
      4. Ferrous Sulfate"Ferrous sulfate heptahydrate is prepared by the action of s... More
      5. Thiamine Mononitrate
      6. Riboflavin
      7. Folic Acid
    4. Granulated Sugar
    5. Corn Starch
    6. Powdered Sugar
    7. Salt
  2. Blue Icing
    1. White Icing
      1. Sugar
      2. Water
      3. Corn Syrup
      4. Cornstarch
      5. AgarFound in certain algae, can be used in a cell culture or lax... More
      6. Corn Starch Modified
      7. Invert Sugar"An aqueous solution of inverted or partly inverted, refined... More
      8. Natural Lemon Flavor
      9. Natural Vanilla Flavor
      10. Salt
    2. Blue Color
      1. Vegetable Glycerine
      2. Spirulina
  3. Yellow String Icing
    1. White String Icing
      1. Sugar
      2. Water
      3. Cornstarch
      4. DextroseA form of glucose, a basic sugar.
      5. Agar-Agar
      6. Ammonium Alginate
      7. Calcium Alginate
      8. Citric Acid"Citric acid is the compound 2-hydroxy-1,2,3-propanetricarbo... More
      9. Corn Syrup
      10. Cultured Corn Syrup Solids
      11. Corn Starch-Modified
      12. Guar Gum
      13. Natural Lemon Flavor With Other Natural Flavors
      14. Natural Vanilla Flavor
    2. Yellow Color
      1. Vegetable Glycerine
      2. Turmeric
  4. Beach Ball Decor
    1. Sugar
    2. Egg White Solids
    3. Modified Corn Starch
    4. Glycerine
    5. For Color
      1. Red Beet Concentrate
      2. Red Cabbage Extract
      3. Annatto
      4. Turmeric
      5. Beta Carotene
  5. Pink Icing
    1. White Icing
      1. Sugar
      2. Water
      3. Corn Syrup
      4. Cornstarch
      5. Agar
      6. Corn Starch Modified
      7. Invert Sugar
      8. Natural Lemon Flavor
      9. Natural Vanilla Flavor
      10. Salt
    2. Pink Color
      1. Vegetable Glycerine
      2. Red Beet Concentrate
      3. Annatto
      4. Turmeric

 

Contains egg, milk, and wheat. Manufactured on equipment that processes items containing soy.

 

 

Breakdown:

 

Nutrition

  • Not the best in the micronutrient department, from what we can see at least.
  • Some trans fats.
  • The macros are mostly carbs.
  • Not enough fiber, in my opinion.

Ingredients

  • There are 43 ingredients.
  • Niacin, Iron, Thiamine, Riboflavin, and Folic Acid are all micronutrients.
  • The sources of carbs are not the best.
  • There is some flavoring.

See also: Get to Know Your Nutrients

 

 

 

Hope this eating out tutorial / walk-through helps! More coming soon.

 

 

 

Thanks for reading!

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