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.
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%?
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.
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.
Grubbing on-the-go: 5.00/10
Overall GrubGrade: 7.25/10
More Info: EinsteinBros.com
Fat: 7 grams