A video shared on social media app TikTok by a Panera Bread employee has gone viral for “exposing” how the restaurant really makes their macaroni and cheese and it may have gotten her fired. The clip, which has racked up over six-million views, shows a worker putting a frozen bag containing the chain’s mac and cheese into boiling water, then cutting the bag open and pouring the hot mac and cheese in a bowl. Voila!
The process seemed to surprise a lot of TikTok users, with one even calling Panera “glorified hospital food.” Others joked that they’ll still eat it, even if it was frozen. And others pointed out that this is a fairly common way to cook food in restaurants.
A Panera spokeswoman has confirmed that they do freeze soups and mac and cheese “to avoid using certain preservatives that do not meet our clean standards.” But the TikTok user who posted the video, @briannaraelenee, confirmed on Twitter that she “lost her job” over the video. In a later tweet, she says the restaurant asked her not to say anything else and she wants to respect that.