Fast Casual Review: Egg White Bagel Sandwich with Turkey Sausage from Einstein Bros.

We all can pretty much acknowledge that you can’t go wrong with an Einstein Brothers bagel or coffee, but how does the popular quick service chain stack up when it comes to other breakfast items? That was the question I had on my mind the other day, as my friend Chris and I stopped by my local Einstein’s to try out their new “Breakfast Done Lite” menu offerings. We decided to sample the Egg White Sandwich with Turkey Sausage, which is described as an…

Egg white sandwich with turkey sausage and ancho salsa, served on a Good Grains bagel, baked fresh daily in the restaurant.

This sandwich is specifically marketing as a “healthy” menu item, clocking in at just 400 calories and 7 grams of fat. I like that you can customize the bagel for the sandwich, and noticing the clear tilt towards a southwestern flavor profile, I decided to have mine served on a Sun-Dried Tomato Bagel. Chris – who is a loyal GrubGrade reader and fast food junkie – chose a Cinnamon Sugar bagel for reasons well beyond even his own comprehension.

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Right off the bat, I felt like the bagel was overwhelmed by the massive egg white. The bagel was only slightly toasted, and the combination of the large egg white and salsa made the otherwise “fresh” bagel a bit soggy. Still, the bagel was good – slightly savory with hints tomato and herbs. The salsa offering on the bagel was somewhat skimpy, but a side of salsa (which I dumped over both sausage patties) was a nice touch. The mild, “jar” salsa – while not overwhelmingly flavorful – worked well to supplement the otherwise bland egg white, but the real star of the sandwich was the sausage. It was moist and well seasoned, with hints of cumin and perhaps Chile powder. Unfortunately, it was also rather small, a real bummer considering the $4.59 price tag of the sandwich. Chris, for his part, liked the sandwich, but said he thought something was “missing.” We both agreed a slice of American cheese might not be a bad accompaniment, but acknowledged that that would probably detract from the “lite” part of the marketing concept. Still, is it too much to ask for some of these breakfast joints to invest in a nice slice of 2%?

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Both of us liked the flavor of the sandwich, and agreed that the salsa really helped to perk up the egg whites in conjunction with the sausage. That being said, we also agreed that the sandwich was much too savory to pair with coffee, with Chris commenting that he “wanted a cherry coke” halfway through eating the sandwich. While not exactly “fresh” we found the ingredients to be superior to that of Dunkin Donuts’ clumsily attempts at Egg White Flatbreads, but at the same time found the construction of the sandwich to be inconsistent. At $4.59 this isn’t the cheapest breakfast option, although it is fairly filling and reasonably healthy. The fact that it doesn’t taste like cardboard and does have certain redeeming flavor components makes it a “try out” item if nothing else.

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Pros: Only 400 calories and 7 grams of fat. Sausage is well seasoned and tasty, and along with salsa helps lend flavor to the otherwise dull egg whites. Customization of bagel options lends to different flavor combinations. Quite filling.

Cons: $4.59 seems a bit hefty for something that costs like a buck and a quarter to make. If un-toasted, the bagel can be overwhelmed by the “wet” ingredients and become soggy. Could use cheese component. Not a very good pairing with coffee.

Taste: 7.75/10
Value: 5.50/10
Grubbing on-the-go: 5.00/10
Price: $4.49

Overall GrubGrade: 7.25/10

More Info: EinsteinBros.com
Nutrition Facts:
Calories: 400
Fat: 7 grams

14 comments on “Fast Casual Review: Egg White Bagel Sandwich with Turkey Sausage from Einstein Bros.

  1. SkippyMom says:

    The pic’ makes it look as tho’ the salsa masks it tasting like cardboard [considering you had to dump the accompanying salsa on it, as it didn’t have enough to begin with]

    But seriously? This? With a cinnamon sugar bagel? Has anyone checked to see if Chris is pregnant? That made me queasy just thinking of the combo. No. just no.

  2. Ryan says:

    Haha…I’m actually intrigued with that combination.

  3. Yum Yucky says:

    Ooo. I love Einstein. I’d have to drive about 15 miles to try this, but my stomach just made a special request.

  4. “The salsa offering on the bagel was somewhat skimpy, but a side of salsa (which I dumped over both sausage patties) was a nice touch.” Maybe that was why the bagel was slightly soggy 😛

    I see you changed out the bagel option…do they have something that would be similar to rye…I love egg whites, mustard and rye….aside from oatmeal it’s my favorite breakfast ever! I bet I would love this sangwich that way. Haha, yeah Chris what’s up with that? Give us the story and tell us how it tasted.

    Speaking about American cheese, there was a great NPR interview on American cheeses last Science Friday….it’s really worth a listen:
    http://www.sciencefriday.com/program/archives/200908146

    ….about that 400 calorie count…I’m pretty skeptical…I bet it’s honestly more toward 550.

  5. Adam Bomb says:

    I’d totally dig the cinnamon bagel with this sandwich, as long as I could leave the salsa off. That’s the only thing that would clash with the cinnamon flavor.

  6. Adam says:

    @Bearl,
    The cals seem right to me. Depends on the bagel size. My bagel was small, so I figure 300 ish at most. Egg whites are virtually nothing and you get 70-100 for am very small turkey sausage. Seems about right to me.

    Don’t ask me about the cinnamon bagel lol. I’ve actually had this item twice since then, both times on pumpernickel w/ mustard. I like it, but at close to five bucks it’s kinda costly. I just stick w/ bagels.

  7. It looks really interesting! The bad part… is that since we moved here to PA I haven’t seen an Einstein Bagels around here. Man I really do miss some things about Baltimore.

  8. Yum Yucky says:

    I’m back again. I wanted to stare at this sandwich just a little bit longer. Ahhhh.

  9. Raiders757 says:

    something looks really “off” with the sausage. It looks like the sausage you find on a sandwich out of a truck stop vending machine.

  10. Chris says:

    Hey I see there is a lot of outrage about my bagel choice. It’ll probably make me seem more foolish but I didn’t actually know it came with salsa when I chose the cinnamon bagel. I ordered without even looking at the picture.

    Given how weak the Einstein cinnamon bagel is it had no effect on the overall flavor of the sandwich. It tasted like a plain bagel. The savory taste is strong enough that one needs flavorful bagel.

    The one bite of the sandwich that had a cinnamon flavor tasted vaguely like a McGriddle.

  11. Agree with Raiders. That sausage looks might gray. Also $4.59?!?

  12. FoodConoisseurK says:

    hey Chris, I totally would have ordered the cinnamon bagel, no matter what the sandwich was! I think it’s the best bagel Einstein has to offer. I like trying interesting and uncommon flavor combos, and I can see you do too. 🙂

    Adam, great article. You always do great food reviews, and you never miss a detail. You also write beautifully!

    If anyone wants to read more Chris/Adam food reviews, check out their GrubGrade review of “Mystery Meat” Kebabs!

    https://www.grubgrade.com/2009/08/16/bizarre-foods-with-adam-%e2%80%98mystery-meat%e2%80%99-kebabs/

  13. Michael says:

    In my experience, turkey sausage should turn greyish-brown when cooked. This isn’t normal sausage. I don’t think that it is supposed to maintain the reddish tint other sausages do.

  14. tessa says:

    I had this yesterday. I thought it was really good. The sausage was flavorful, the salsa had a good amount of spice, and the good grains bagel was nice and chewy and wholesome. I added sprouts and tomatoes to mine, for a bit more nutrition.