[Fox Business] Panera announces major menu changes set to debut next month

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Panera Bread will introduce nine new entrees and upgrade some of its current offerings.

The changes, centered on giving “core” offerings like soups, salads and sandwiches a boost, arise out of a major update coming to its menus around the country starting April 4, the brand said Thursday.

Panera said it aimed to offer “better value through enhanced portions and lower price points” with the menu changes, “while also being easier for guests to navigate.” The overhaul is supposed to boost efficiency among its workers at the same time, Panera said. 

One of the new dishes Panera plans to roll out will be a Bacon Mac & Cheese. Among the other eight new additions, four will be sandwiches – the Toasted Italiano, Chicken Bacon Rancher, Ciabatta Cheesesteak and Tomato Basil BLT – and four will be salads – the Mediterranean Chicken Greens with Grains, Southwest Chicken Ranch, Balsamic Chicken Greens with Grains and Ranch Cobb Salad.

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The company said some of the new offerings would have price tags under $10.

Customers can expect existing dishes like the Bravo Club Sandwich and Fuji Apple Chicken Salad to undergo some changes. In total, a dozen items already on its menu will get “recipe enhancements” and become “packed with even more delicious flavors that guests will love,” according to Panera.

“There will be more chicken and steak on many salads and sandwiches,” the company said.

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It was not clear whether Panera’s “Charged Lemonade,” a caffeinated beverage that has been the subject of three lawsuits in recent months, would still be available once the self-proclaimed “new era” of Panera kicks off in April.

The company has said more details about its “largest menu transformation ever” will come out as it gets closer and closer to the debut of its 20-plus changes at restaurants. The brand’s presence includes 2,160 locations across the U.S. and Ontario, Canada.

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Panera Brands, which the namesake chain, Caribou Coffee and Einstein Bros. fall under, reported last year brought in over $4.8 billion in revenue in fiscal 2022.

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