One of These Bagels Has A Skinny Secret

September 22, 2011   55 Comments

Snack Girl lives in the North Eastern United States or as it is called " the bagel corridor". Yes, there is a fresh bagel chain here called Bruegger's and it is pretty good.

Skinny Bagel

While visiting their store, I saw something very exciting! "America's Best Bagel goes Skinny", the sign proclaimed. Wow!

This is exactly what I need - a smaller bagel so my bagel TREAT isn't a monster. So, I ordered the bagel thinking I would get a the smaller bagel of yesteryear.

You see a regular bagel is 310 calories - which is equivalent to THREE pieces of toast. Twenty years ago (before I was born :), a bagel was only 140 calories (see: Portion Size, Then vs. Now) - a few more calories than one piece of toast.

So, I ordered a skinny poppy seed bagel and this was what I received:


Do you see how there are THREE slices? That middle slice is the innovation to make it "skinny".

Bruegger's staff tosses out the middle slice and that is how they make a 210 calorie skinny bagel (instead of regular bagel's 310 calories). And, yes, you pay the same amount for a 2/3 bagel.

I stopped them before they tossed out that slice because I just can't waste food like that. I asked them, "What do you do with the middle slice? Compost it, feed it to birds, send it to a food bank?" But, they just toss it in the TRASH.


Why doesn't Bruegger's just make a smaller bagel? Clearly, that MUST be too much trouble - they probably make more money by just throwing away food.

How about bagging the extra slices and selling 10 for $2? Or just giving the person who bought the skinny bagel the extra slice to give to a friend?

As you can tell, I am upset that my quest for a healthier bagel results in food waste.

There are hungry people in my town and I just can't justify tossing away food like that.

I could just buy a regular bagel and only eat half of it - 150 calories of bagel is a very reasonable portion size. My problem (and one that Bruegger's has identified) is that I don't have the will power not to eat the whole thing.

Yes, I have tested the EAT HALF idea with the bagel above - and, guess what? - I ate all of it.

My suggestion is to find delicious mini-bagels (haven't found them yet) or just keep your bagel treats to a minimum.

I will send this post to Bruegger's with the hope that they will change their "toss the middle slice in the trash" policy.

Have you seen skinny bagels?

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First 20 Comments: ( See all 55 )

When you described how they cut the bagel in thirds and throw away the middle, my mouth dropped. This is truly the most idiotic, wasteful thing I've ever heard of and will only serve to have me NEVER step foot in a Bruegger's ever.

My mouth hit the floor when I read this. What a waste of food. And someone please explain to me what is so hard about simply making a smaller bagel?

My local bagel store makes a mini that is exactly like the regular bagels, only smaller. They are wonderful! Cutting out the middle of a regular bagel is just idiotic.

I have found store bought bagels that are 140 calories - Healthy Life. They are slightly smaller than regular bagels,have 9 grams of fiber and taste pretty good!

I can't believe they do that! That is complete irresponsible of them. I've never been to bruegger's but it's here where I live too. I'll be sending them a message about the complete waste that is. I think that you have a great idea there too. Sell the centers 10 for $2-4. They'd make even more money that way and cave the waste.

Wow... how stupid and wasteful. You'd think a company would recognize the waste and find a way to use it. I mean, many bagel stores make their own bagel chips -- so if nothing else, they could sell these extra 1/3-bagels, make money, and stop the waste.

How about bagging the extra slices and giving them to a local charity that feeds people at the end of every day for toast the next morning?

That is amazing. I've never heard of that. I cut my bagel consumption years ago, but I love a good cheesy bagel.

Maybe Bruegger's should just package a thin bagel (without the middle) and also package an inner bagel, and call it crustless.

That's crazy! My local bagel shop serves bagel chips as a side to their sandwiches. I'm guessing these are from day old bagels that would otherwise be wasted. They really are not thinking outside the box on this one-shame on them!

That has to be one of the dumbest things I've ever heard. What a horrible waste of food - they should be ashamed.

Making smaller bagels isn't a new idea. I doubt it's that much harder to make the same bagel in a smaller size. If you're looking for a truly skinny bagel, the brand Thomas makes bagel thins that you can purchase almost anywhere. Here's hoping they're not throwing out the "middle"...

In NYC there is a chain called Brooklyn Bagels, and they have a great selection of mini-bagels (which are still huge). Also, Au Bon Pain does a great skinny bagel with egg whites and cheese.

like everyone, I am SHOCKED. Not only is that a complete waste of food that can go to someone in need but it's dumb on their finance part too! They buy all the same ingredients for a regular bagel and then just throw a third out...seems like they didn't think it through at all!

I'm glad you are sending this to them and hope they make some smart changes.

Shocking. Just shocking. They could easily toast and bag them for "chips". Or just as easily donate the middles to a food bank or local church kitchen! Scandalous! Thank god I don't live anywhere near or I'd be at their door yelling! Thank you "Snack Girl" for telling their secret. They should be ashamed!

Wow, I have not seen this, or heard about it. But definitely saddened by this! So many restaurants waste so much food, I mean serious amounts at times. In my food safety job, one of the restaurants I audit, they work with a program called 'Harvest Program.' The extra food (waste) is given to a local shelter. I love this program, I wish all restaurants worked with the program. Thank you for sharing, Take care, Terra

They make the same amount of $$$, so they don't care. You're the one that's getting ripped off. I would have ask for the middle, too. Snackgirl, just cut your reg. size bagel in half immediately and save it for later. Eating it later for a snack is better than eating it in one sitting. Then,you don't feel ripped off.

I agree with Susan. Also, I too buy the Thomas' Bagel Thins. They come in a lot of flavors, including whole wheat, and are just the right size for me. They're also great for sandwiches.

OMG - i am seriously shocked by this. Enough that it makes me NOT want to eat at Bruggers. What a waste....and what a stupid idea in general. The million dollar question....why don't they just make a smaller bagel?!?! We as consumers needs to start holding the businesses that we frequent more accountable.

That is just idiotic! My local bagel store does the same thing, thirds, but they bake them and sell them as bagel chips

I know I'm only going to be echoing what others have already said, but slicing out the middle?! Really? I can't believe none of their employees stood up to point out: 1) how stupid and wasteful that is, 2) how un-enterprising it is to just throw it away!

They could throw on some seasoning, toast them and sell them as bagel chips!

Booooooo to Brueggers!

I agree that there are better things that could be done with the middle slice but I found that having my hubby or my friends SHARE my bagel makes it easier to stay on track. If I'm unlucky enough not to have someone to share it with I just ask to have one half wrapped to go and consume the other. I don't usually get any static for that request. Also, I've found that Bagel Thins from the grocery store is very good. Just don't over-heat them or they tend to dry out.

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