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What’s in Panera’s Pecan Roll?

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 280/560 cal”     — this could be found right after a soup, indicating that the small bowl is 280 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 “Pecan Roll.” Here you will find the nutrition details and ingredients.

 

 

 

Summaries- Nutrition (per roll):

  • 720 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.

 

 

  • 46 grams of fat, 14 of which is saturated, 0 grams trans fat

Bread is mostly carbs, but the higher calorie deserts have more fat. Thankfully there are no trans fat here.

 

 

  • 70mg of cholesterol, and 400mg 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.

 

 

  • 69g of carbs, 5 of which is fiber, and 32 of which is sugar (the remaining is starch)

Not a great sugar to fiber ratio.

See also: How to Understand and Apply the Nutrition Facts

 

 

  • 11g 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, 10% of your daily Vitamin C, 8% for Calcium, and 25% of your Iron

A good 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): 58% fat, 36% carbs, 6% 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. Pecan Roll Dough
    1. Enriched Wheat Flour
      1. Flour
      2. Malted Barley Flour
      3. Niacin
      4. Iron
      5. Thiamine Mononitrate
      6. Riboflavin
      7. 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. Water
    4. Eggs
    5. Sugar
    6. Leavening
      1. Yeast
      2. Sodium Acid PyrophosphateAlso known as disodium phosphate, it is a leavening agent, s... More
      3. Baking Soda
      4. Monocalcium PhosphateIt is a leavening agent because it produces CO2 when it reac... More
    7. Margarine
      1. Palm Oil
      2. Soybean Oil
      3. Water
      4. Salt
      5. Natural Flavor
      6. Beta-Carotene (Color)
      7. Vitamin A Palmitate
    8. Brown Sugar
    9. Cinnamon
    10. Cream Cheese
      1. Pasteurized Milk And Cream
      2. Cheese CultureThis refers to a culture of cells- keeping things like yeast... More
      3. Salt
      4. Carob Bean Gum"Locust (carob) bean gum is primarily the macerated endosper... More
    11. Dough Conditioner (Ascorbic AcidAnother name for vitamin c.)
    12. Honey
    13. Natural Vanilla Flavor
    14. Salt
    15. Soybean Oil
  2. Pecans
  3. Pecan Smear
    1. Brown Sugar
    2. Palm Oil
    3. Sugar
    4. Water
    5. Corn Syrup
    6. Cinnamon

 

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

 

 

Breakdown:

 

Nutrition

  • Alright in the micronutrient department, from what we can see at least.
  • No trans fats.
  • The macros are mostly fats.
  • There’s an OK amount of fiber, but more would be better, in my opinion.

Ingredients

  • There are 33 ingredients.
  • Niacin, Reduced Iron"[Iron] prepared by reacting ground ferric oxide with hydrog... More, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin,  and Folic Acid are all micronutrients.
  • The sources of fat 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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