Panera Bread, the American chain of bakery-café restaurants, is a popular destination for lunch lovers across the United States. From freshly-baked bread to delicious soups, salads, and sandwiches, the restaurant offers a wide variety of options to satisfy your taste buds. Whether you are a vegetarian or a meat-eater, Panera has something for everyone. In this article, we will explore Panera's lunch hours and menus to help you plan your next visit to this restaurant.


Panera Bread

Panera Bread is a well-known restaurant chain that specializes in bakery goods, sandwiches, salads, and soups. With locations across the United States, Panera Bread is a convenient choice for those seeking a quick, healthy meal. Though the restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner options, it is important to select the right time to visit to ensure the best experience possible. 

Panera Bread Lunch Hours

The designated lunch hours

The designated lunch hours of Panera Bread vary by location, but they typically fall between 11 am and 2 pm. These hours are the busiest time of day for the restaurant, as most people take their lunch break during this time frame. It is important to keep this in mind when planning a visit to Panera Bread, as wait times and staffing levels can greatly affect your experience.

How staffing levels and wait times are affected

Due to the high volume of customers during lunch hours, Panera Bread often has an increased number of staff members on hand to handle the rush. However, despite their efforts, wait times can still be significant. If you're in a hurry or looking to avoid long lines, it may be best to visit the restaurant outside of peak lunch hours.

Panera Bread Lunch Menus

  • Tomato Mozzarella Flatbread
  • Chicken, Ham and Swiss Flatbread
  • Roasted Turkey Cranberry Flatbread


  • Mac and Cheese
  • Chicken Tortellini Alfredo, Butternut Squash Ravioli
  • Pasta Primavera-meal
Broth bowls
  • Soba Noodle Bowl with Chicken
  • Soba Noodles with Edamame
  • Lentil Quinoa Bowl with Chicken
  • Roasted Turkey and Avocado
  • Tuna Salad
  • Smoke Ham and Swiss
  • Vegetarian Creamy Tomato Soup
  • All-natural Turkey Chili
  • Turkey Chili Soup
Hot Drinks
  • Pumpkin Spice Latte
  • Cappuccino
  • Hot chocolate with Chocolate Chip Marshmallow
Pastries and Sweets
  • Cinnamon Roll
  • Butter Croissant
  • Pastry Ring
  • Apple
  • Chips
  • Baked Chips
  • Reduced Fat Chive and Onion Cream Cheese Tub
  • Plain Cream Cheese Spread Tub
  • Mini Scone Variety Pack
Muffins and Muffins, Croissants
  • Blueberry Muffin
  • Chocolate Croissant
  • Cinnamon Swirl Bagel

Specials Offered 

Special Deals or Offers During Lunch Hours

Apart from their scrumptious menu offerings, Panera Bread has several special deals and offers during lunch hours, which means you can enjoy your favorite dishes without breaking the bank. One such example is the 'You Pick Two' menu, where you can choose between half of a sandwich or salad and a soup. This meal can be perfect for people who want to taste multiple flavors of their menu in a single meal.

How to Avail Specials 

Panera Bread also offers other special deals and discounts during lunch hours, such as the “Rapid Pick-Up” service, where you can order online and pick up your meal within minutes upon your arrival. This helpful service can save you time and energy so you can enjoy your lunch break without the hassle.

Crowded Lunch Hours

How to Beat the Crowded Lunch Hours

The first tip to beat the crowded lunch hours of Panera Bread is to avoid peak hours altogether. Typically, the crowds are the most during the standard lunch hour of noon to 1 p.m. Adjust your schedule to arrive either earlier, around 11 a.m., or later, after 1 p.m. Another way to avoid the crowds is to utilize Panera Bread's online ordering system. This way, you can place your order online, pay for it, and then quickly pick it up at the designated pick-up location without having to wait in line.

Tips for Avoiding Long Queues

Another tip for avoiding long queues during lunch hours at Panera Bread is to consider other locations that are not frequented as often. Typically, people tend to flock to high-traffic areas, while less frequently visited locations offer a calmer experience. Additionally, if possible, you can also try placing your order ahead of time for delivery or takeout. This allows you to avoid the crowds altogether, making for a much more pleasant lunch experience.

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In conclusion, Panera Bread is an excellent choice for lunch, with a menu that caters to all appetites and tastes. From soups and salads to sandwiches and paninis, you are sure to find something that you love. Whether you want a quick lunch on-the-go or a sit-down meal with friends and family, Panera has you covered. With their convenient hours and extensive menu, you can't go wrong with a visit to Panera Bread.