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How Much Does Panera Bread Pay? (Full Guide)

how much does panera bread pay

Do you love the smell of freshly baked bread? If you are looking for a new job, Panera Bread could be the perfect place to work. 

This American bakery and café chain boasts more than two thousand locations across the United States and Canada. If you live in a large town or city, there is a good chance that there is a branch near your home. The company offers a wide range of entry-level and more advanced roles, and there is a good chance they are hiring. 

If you are wondering, ‘how much does Panera Bread pay?’, then it’s time to find out…

Shift Hours

Shift Hours

The company’s bakeries are typically open from 06:00 to 22:00. Employees are required to cover a range of shift patterns to make sure customers are catered to. The average length of shifts is six hours for part-time employees and seven or eight hours for full-time employees.

Hiring preference for entry-level roles is usually given to people who can cover a range of different shifts. Therefore, it is important to select as many shift patterns as possible when stating your availability. If you have limitations due to study or family commitments, you can discuss them during the interview. 

Read more: Get Paid to Read Books

The break policy

Unlike most companies, there is not a set policy for paid breaks during shifts. Your manager is likely to decide when you can take breaks according to how busy the bakery is. However, all employees are entitled to take an unpaid thirty-minute meal break. 

How Much Does Panera Bread Pay? – Different Jobs You Can Apply For

How Much Does Panera Bread Pay? - Different Jobs You Can Apply For

Each location offers a wide range of entry-level roles to choose from. If you have little experience, you could apply for one of the managerial roles. So, let’s check out some of the main roles you can apply for and the average salaries that go with them. 

Team Member

This role involves greeting customers, taking their orders, and serving them. Therefore, it is necessary to have strong customer service skills and be polite and friendly at all times. Team Members need to have a good understanding of the menu and be able to make suggestions to customers.

Other duties include making sure the bakery is clean and tidy and helping prepare food and beverages. This is usually a part-time role, and the rate starts at just under $10 per hour. The hourly rate usually increases slightly after the first year. 


This role is often offered to team members who have proved that they are responsible. It is necessary to memorize the bakery menu and be aware of any menu changes. In addition to ringing up purchases, you need to have basic math skills and provide excellent customer service.

This role typically pays a little over $10 per hour and comes with paid training. Your hourly rate is likely to increase slightly once you have proven your skills. Cashiers also receive a percentage of the tips that are collected during their shifts. 

Delivery Driver 

If you enjoy driving and have a good sense of direction, this job could be perfect for you. You need to be at least eighteen years old, have a valid driver’s license, and have your own insured vehicle. This role comes with a flexible schedule and involves delivering meal and drink orders to customers. 

The typical salary is a little under $11 per hour. Delivery Drivers also receive tips from customers, while their mileage is paid by the company at the end of each shift. If you deliver excellent customer service, you are sure to find that your earning potential increases considerably. 

Overnight Baker

Night owls who love to get busy in the kitchen are sure to excel in this role. It is usually necessary to have at least a year of baker experience to secure the job. The typical shift hours run from 22:00 to 08:00.

This role involves receiving all the prepared baked goods and making sure they are ready for sale. This includes providing finishing touches such as decorating different baked goods. This is usually a full-time job that comes with a starting salary of around $32,000 per year. 

Catering Lead

Panera Bread offers catering to customers who are hosting a special event. Catering Leads are responsible for fulfilling orders and delivering them to customers. It is essential to have strong attention to detail and excellent customer service skills.  

While some catering experience is preferred, this role is also open to entry-level employees who have their own vehicles. Paid training is provided to make sure you have the necessary skills to do the job well. Once you have completed your training, you are likely to earn a little over $11 per hour. 

Catering Coordinator

Catering Coordinator

This role is usually offered as a promotion to Catering Leads who have proven their skills. These employees are charged with making sure that the catering department of each outlet runs smoothly. This includes making sure that each employee works efficiently while being focused on maximizing profits.

You need to be able to train and coach other employees to do this job. It is also necessary to be able to coordinate with customers to make sure their needs are met. The average salary is around $12.75 per hour. This translates to $510 per week if you work forty hours each week. 

Team Lead 

This low-level managerial role is perfect for people who are comfortable assigning duties to team members. You need to have a good understanding of the different roles at Panera Bread and be able to step into them. You also need to be able to demonstrate different tasks to new employees.

The average salary is a little over $11 per hour. If you have your sights set on becoming a manager, it is best to work as many hours as possible. Being available to fill in when employees call in sick will highlight you as a team player. 

Team Manager

This is the next step on the ladder and puts employees in charge of the store operations during shifts. If you already have a year of experience in restaurant management, you could apply for this job straight away. Alternatively, you could be promoted after excelling in a lower role.

Team Managers usually work closely with Assistant Managers to make sure everything is running smoothly. You are likely to be in charge of helping open and close the store. It is also necessary to make sure that there is sufficient inventory in the stock room.

While the starting salary is $14 per hour, it quickly rises to $16 per hour. Most team managers work a forty-hour week on average. This means that you can expect to earn $642 per week and $33,300 per year. 

Assistant Manager

This is a full-time role that places employees in charge of overseeing the cafe in a branch. The main responsibility is to make sure that all customers are satisfied and get the correct orders. You need to be available to resolve any issues that arise to maintain the reputation of the café.

Points of focus include the background music, lighting, and cleanliness of the café. When new items are added to the menu, it is necessary to make sure all employees are aware of them. You would also be in charge of enforcing company policy.

At least a year of supervisory experience…

This is a full-time role that is available to people with at least a year of supervisory experience. The starting salary for the role is typically around $40,000 per year. People who have extra experience can often start at a slightly higher rate. 


If you have a college degree and a little experience in the food service industry, this role could be for you. However, it is also possible to advance through the company to take on this leadership role. The main duty is to make sure that a single location runs as smoothly as possible.

This includes smoothly resolving issues with customers and making hiring decisions. Managers have to make sure that all employees are fully trained and performing at the optimum level. Other duties include creating work schedules, performing inventory, and ordering new stock when needed.

Benefits and bonuses!

Benefits and bonuses!

The average salary for this role is around $55,000 per year, which is a little below the industry average. However, you will also gain an annual performance bonus as well as an attractive benefits package. If you impress the company, your performance bonus could add up to $5,000 per year. 

How Much Does Panera Bread Pay? – Employee Benefits

Although bakery employees do not receive payment for their meal breaks, they can enjoy free food. After completing 1,500 hours, part-time employees can qualify for a range of medical benefits. This usually happens after part-time employees have worked for the company for between one and two years. 

Full-time employees also qualify to receive a wide range of benefits such as medical, dental, and vision plans. There is also a company retirement plan and paid time off. Full-time employees usually need to work for a full year to become eligible for these benefits. 

The Dress Code

All employees who work in the café or bakery are issued a uniform. This consists of an apron, name tag, and hat. Each of these items is branded with the company logo and has to be kept clean and in good condition.

Employees are expected to wear a pair of khaki-colored pants during their shifts. However, jeans, shorts, baggy pants, and cargo pants are not permitted. Men are not permitted to wear earrings, and women can only wear one earring in each ear. 

Managers have their own policies…

Individual managers can set their own policies on the types of shirts that employees are allowed to wear. Generally speaking, employees are not allowed to wear sweatshirts or sweaters during their shifts. Managers are also likely to have their own policies when it comes to grooming. 

How to Apply For A Job 

How to Apply For A Job 

The best way to secure a role at Panera Bread is by visiting the careers section of the website. Take the time to read about the company culture and elements that make the company special. Checking out the career path section will also help you to plan your employment strategy.

You can enter the location you want to work at and keywords into the provided search bars. Or you can further narrow the search by selecting the type of employment. You will then find a list of job vacancies that match your search criteria.

Browse more than one role!

It is worth taking the time to click on a few job titles so you can read the full job description. Make sure you pay attention to the specified job requirements. When you have found the right role, you can click on the ‘Apply Now’ button. Alternatively, you can save the job and apply later if you prefer.

You will then be redirected to the online application form, which needs to be completed in detail. Take the time to carefully check for errors and make sure that all the supplied information is accurate. You can also edit and attach a copy of your resume before clicking on the ‘Submit’ button. 

The hiring process

If your application appeals to the hiring manager, you will receive a call within two weeks. The hiring manager will arrange an interview at the place you have applied to work. If you are applying for a managerial or corporate role, you may need to complete two interviews. You will also be subjected to a background check before a job offer is made. 

The minimum hiring age

You need to be at least sixteen years old to apply for a job at Panera Bread. However, most roles require previous work experience. Therefore, only a handful of roles are open to teenagers. If you are still in college, it is important to make sure your employer understands your study commitments. 

Working In A Bakery Is Fun!

Can you imagine all the wonderful aromas all day! So, let’s take a look at our in-depth Panera Bread Mission And Vision Statement Analysis, which brings us to the Panera Bread Application and the most commonly asked Panera Bread Interview Questions for you to fully prepare.

You might also be wondering How Old Do You Have To Be To Work At Panera Bread if you’re looking for your first job; and finally, check out Does Panera Bread Hire Felons if you have a criminal record.

Among other great restaurant opportunities are our guides to the Perkins Restaurant And Bakery Application, the Fresh And Easy Application, and if you love your bagels, check out the Brueggers Bagels Application, the Einstein Bros Bagels Application, as well as the Mcalisters Deli Application for 2023.

How Much Does Panera Bread Pay? – Final Thoughts

If you are searching for a way to gain work experiencePanera Bread can be a great place to start. The company is known for providing employees with the chance to learn new skills and advance. With hard work and dedication, it is possible to rise to a low-level managerial role after just two or three years.

However, it is important to note that the starting salary is not particularly high when compared to other companies. The company is also quite conservative, which can give some people pause for thought. If you like to wear a beard or have prominent piercing or tattoos, you may find it tricky to get hired.

All the very best working at Panera Bread!

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