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11 Best Breads You Can Get at Panera, Ranked

By Lana Kisner | December 21, 2023

With a menu that mainly includes soups, salads, and sandwiches, there’s no surprise that the breads at Panera are amazing. But what’s even better is that you can order any of their breads, sliced or unsliced, and take them home with you to pair with your favorite meals.

Panera’s bakery menu has a variety of breads, from brioche rolls to loaves and baguettes, that are perfect for personal use and large parties. Some of them come with unique flavors like tomato basil or asiago cheese focaccia, which make them great for dipping into your soup or using them for sandwiches. Here are all the breads at Panera ranked from good to best. I’ll also clue you in on what to pair each bread with.

11. Classic White Miche

The Classic White Miche is the perfect bread for making a quick sandwich for lunch or dinner. It’s a bit thicker than most other breads from Panera, but it’s super soft and tender, which makes it perfect for dipping or making a sandwich stacked high with ingredients. I love the versatility of this bread, so I pick up one every now and then when I stop by one of their locations.

10. Sourdough Bread Bowl

The Sourdough Bread Bowl is baked using Panera’s original sourdough starter, so the taste is similar to its loaf counterpart, but it can instantly turn your favorite soup into a filling meal. It’s a great way to bring that fancy restaurant feel into your dining room at home. You can order a 2-pack at a discounted price, which makes it perfect for a date night.

9. Brioche Roll

Brioche is the classic type of bread most popular sandwich chains offer, and Panera’s recipe doesn’t disappoint. Their version is made with an egg-based dough, and it’s super fluffy with a slightly crispy crust on top. This is a great bread to take home and enjoy with your soup. You can also order it as a 4-pack to share with family or save it for a sandwich the next day.

8. Country Rustic Sourdough

Sourdough bread is always a good option if you need a loaf to get you throughout the week. It’s also the perfect bread for a large party since Panera’s recipe doesn’t contain dairy or eggs. It’s a soft, tender bread that pairs well with pretty much any meal.

7. Artisan Ciabatta Loaf

Alright, we’re getting into the “artisan bread” category, and this ciabatta loaf earns its name because of its variety of textures and flavors. The inside is super soft and fluffy, but the outside has a nice thin crust that makes the whole thing chewy when you bite into it. There’s also a hint of olive oil flavor that you can taste since it’s included in the recipe.

6. Classic Sourdough Loaf

Just like its country rustic sourdough counterpart, the classic sourdough bread also uses Panera’s original sourdough starter, but there are some differences between the two, mainly in the crust department. The classic version has that thin, light crust on top, which I actually enjoy more. I also find the classic version a bit tangier. You can pair this bread with most Panera soups or any soup you make at home.

5. Black Pepper Focaccia

This round loaf will bring you some delicious Italian flavors. It’s made with an olive oil blend and coarse ground black pepper, which add a whole lot of flavor. Texture-wise, the inside is soft, but the outside has that crispy crust, so it’s perfect to pair with your favorite creamy soup. Panera also features this bread in some of their sandwiches.

4. White Whole Grain

This bread from Panera offers the best of both worlds. It basically combines whole grain ingredients with the fluffiness of classic white bread. It has a milder flavor compared to traditional whole wheat bread, and the inside is softer. I like using it for my sandwiches, but you can certainly pair it with a hearty soup.

3. Tomato Basil Bread

The Tomato Basil Bread is made with Panera’s original sourdough starter, but things get pretty interesting with the use of additional ingredients. Tomatoes and dried basil are added to the dough, which brings in some delicious flavors. There’s also a sweet crumb topping on the crust, which further elevates the flavor profile. Panera features this bread in some of their sandwiches, but for me, its bold flavor really comes through when it’s used for a chicken or turkey sandwich.

2. Asiago Cheese Focaccia

This is another focaccia bread from Panera, but this time with asiago cheese. Focaccia is basically Italian flatbread, so we’re off to a good start. This bread is baked with olive oil and topped with sea salt, which means you get all the more flavors. You can pair it with pretty much any soup, but my all-time favorite is tomato soup. Try it and thank me later!

1. French Baguette Loaf

The French Baguette may be simple, but I think it’s the best bread Panera offers. It’s a classic, and for good reason. You can pair it with pretty much any soup, salad, or sandwich. In fact, this is the bread Panera serves on the side with all of their soups and salads. The bread has a blistered crust on top and is soft inside. It also has that slightly tangy wine-like aroma that you can taste and smell. You can’t go wrong with this bread, so buy a loaf and bring it home to enjoy with pretty much any meal.

About the Author

Lana Kisner is a writer on the team with more than 15 years of experience in the food service industry. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, exploring new restaurants, listening to live music, and hiking with her dog.