Panera Adds New Vegan Smoothie to Its Menu

panera-vegan-smoothieLast year, Panera Bread made a bold move by proclaiming its commitment to adding more plant-based options.  Known as a healthier alternative to traditional fast food, the popular chain’s decision was in line with consumer demand (clearly, people want their plants).

Now, a blueberry pomegranate vegan smoothie is the latest addition to the eatery’s menu. The drink hit stores as of early January, so you can find it now at a Panera near you.

“We want our menu to offer guests a range of options and full transparency so that they can make the right decision for their lifestyle,” Sara Burnett, Panera’s director of wellness and food policy, told Latest Vegan News. “The new Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie with coconut milk is a great option for those following a vegan diet.”

For those interested in ingredients, they are:

Blueberry Pomegranate Fruit And Vegetable Base (Blueberry Puree, Coconut Milk (Water, Coconut Cream, Guar Gum, Xanthan Gum, Carrageenan), White Grape Juice Concentrate, Banana Puree, Water, Gum Arabic, Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, Ground Chia Seeds, Beet Juice Concentrate, Natural Flavor), Water, Fresh Blueberries.

The new vegan smoothie joins a lot of other plant-based menu items at Panera, including the low-fat vegetarian black bean soup; the classic cafe salad; the ciabatta bread and more. Other fast food and fast casual chains are also showing an increased interest in vegan and vegetarian items, including Taco Bell, Subway, and Wendy’s.

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Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief

Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief

A wizard of words, lover of all living things and vegan mac 'n cheese master, Hannah is the Editor-In-Chief and Founder of LatestVeganNews.com. Her writing has appeared in Live Happy magazine, the Miami New Times, OneGreenPlanet.com, MindBodyGreen.com, and numerous other publications and websites. She's obsessed with Cocowhip, Just Mayo and Dandies marshmallows, and is totally addicted to the outdoors. You can reach Hannah directly at hannah.sentenac@gmail.com.

10 Responses

  1. Mike says:

    Too bad it has carrageenan.

  2. Love to see this, but wish the Asheville location would bring back the vegan Broth Bowl.

  3. Dawn says:

    Other then this smoothie what other vegan items do the have?. Vegetarian is not vegan.

  4. Lori says:

    I agree totally with Mike. Why carrageenan? That’s a deal breaker for me.

  5. Josephine says:

    I’m baffled at how else one makes a smoothie. It is considered normal to add dairy to them? Mine are always vegan because that’s what blended fruit is.
    *scratches head, baffled*
    As to their using carrageean, they clearly aren’t using fresh fruit if they need that mess in there.

    • Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief Hannah Sentenac, Editor-in-Chief says:

      Hi Josephine! Most smoothies from fast food or fast casual restaurants are made with dairy, unfortunately! Totally unnecessary, but extremely common nonetheless. So it’s a positive development that Panera has chosen to offer a vegan option. Here at Latest Vegan News we’re all about supporting vegan products and offerings; companies need to know that consumers support vegan items, or they’ll be less likely to make the effort to offer any. And while some consumers may choose to opt out of processed vegan foods or certain ingredients (like carageenan), we write these kinds of stories because we believe that every new vegan option is a step towards a more compassionate world. 🙂

  6. Molly says:

    Too bad it has coconut. I am tired of being excited to see vegan options when I am out and about, especially when I have to eat out and had not planned to, only to find out that the hot food item du jour, coconut, is in the vegan item available. I am allergic and I hate the taste, the smell, and the mouth feel. I am sure I am not alone, though outnumbered by all the coconut-nuts out there.

  7. Captain Marvelous says:

    I agree with the carrageenan. Boooo!!!!

  8. Cassie says:

    Panera can make any of their smoothies with no yogurt, it’s added to the mix before blending. So you can have any smoothie you want..Also, if you politely ask the Ashville location to make the Soba noodle bowl, they should. They still carry all the ingredients to make it, but it may take them a little extra time to throw it together.

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