Nutrients, please.

As an RD (that’s Registered Dietitian) it’s so important to me that everyone can enjoy good, clean food at Panera, no matter the diet they follow. That’s why I’m really excited about the Panera Nutrient-Packed menu.

There’s a lot of strong research to support eating a nutrient rich diet. From promoting a healthy weight to decreasing your chances of getting certain diseases, eating a nutrient rich diet—especially one full of lean protein, whole grains, beans, fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds— can benefit your overall well-being.

The Nutrient-Packed menu is Panera’s take on a well-balanced menu that fuels you without over-indulging. It is great for our health and calorie conscious guests. For each item, we strive to find the right balance of calories, fat, sodium, carbohydrates, fiber and protein. Bonus if we have extra veggies and fruits, and limited added sugars!

My personal favorite is a really easy menu hack for the Strawberry Poppyseed Salad. I substitute our seasonal greens for the romaine, and roasted turkey for the chicken. By switching to the romaine, kale, radicchio and arugula blend, we add even more color which equals more nutrition. And roasted turkey is another favorite of mine when it comes to our protein options, so that’s why I’ve made the switch here. I love this salad so much, and it’s full of delicious fruit, greens, lean protein and nuts.

Following a nutrient rich diet adds great foods and flavor to your diet. To add nutrient rich foods at home, try picking out a new food to try each week to make things more fun. Think hearty grains, like farro, quinoa, bulger and freekah; or lesser-known veggies, like jicama, kohlrabi, sunchokes and dandelion greens.

Of course, new recipes and methods of cooking can help get you excited about the old-standbys too. If brussels sprouts make you cringe, try them roasted with a little olive oil, salt and pepper and I’ll bet you’ll change your mind.