Food & Drink

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

Since the day I started going to Panera yearsss ago, I have always gotten the same thing. Always. No matter what, I have never strayed. The Pick-Two, Frontega Chicken Panini and the Apple Chicken Fuji Salad. (This is a great copycat of that salad!)ย  Some may call me boring, mostly I just know what I like. I kinda do that at A LOT of local restaurants..once I find something that I love, I get the exact same thing every.single.time. Seriously, why mess with a good thing? If Im trying a new place, obviously Ill try a new dish, but at the local places, I get what I know I love!

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

I love this Panera Frontega Chicken Panini. Its so simple, yet so flavorful, and warm, gooey, melty, slightly spicy, a little bit creamy, crunchy on the outside. It is one of my all time favorite sandwiches. Ive been wanting to make it at home for awhile and I finally did. And Ill tell yah what, this comes pretty darn close to the Panera version. I think I like mine a little better, because I can stuff it with more yumminess!

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

This is such a fabulous panini. It makes a great lunch, or even a quick weeknight dinner. My hubby wanted to go back for another one if he wasn’t already so stuffed! He definitely approved! If you like the Panera version, you’ll love this! Now I want to go make one! Enjoy!

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 2 Sandwiches

Copycat Panera Frontega Chicken Panini


    For the Spread
  • 1/8 cup mayo
  • 1/8 cup sour cream
  • 1 chipotle in adobo, minced
  • 5 fresh basil leaves, julienne
  • For the Sandwich
  • 2 Focaccia Rolls
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 Tomato
  • 4 slices red onion
  • 4 slices fresh mozzarella cheese


  1. In a small bowl mix together the mayo and sour cream.
  2. Stir in the chipotle pepper and basil. Set it in the fridge for 1 hour.
  3. To assemble the panini, slice the focaccia rolls in half, and brush the insides with olive oil.
  4. Heat a grill pan on medium heat, and place on the rolls, cut side down until they turn a nice gold brown.
  5. Smear on the chipotle spread to both sides and assemble starting with the mozzarella cheese, chicken, onion, and lastly the tomato.
  6. Top with the bread, and place a heavy pan on top or push down hard with a spatula until the mozzarella cheese is melty and gooey!
  7. Serve and enjoy!

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  • Reply Rachel Cooks

    Our Panera has a drive-thru. Do you know how dangerous that is?!?! This looks amazing!

    February 13, 2013 at 1:33 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      Whaat! A drive-thru! Thats not even fair! haha (Thanks!)

      February 13, 2013 at 2:55 pm
  • Reply Cassie | Bake Your Day

    I love Panera and even more, I love copycat recipes. This sounds so good!

    February 13, 2013 at 1:59 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      Thank you! I love it too!

      February 13, 2013 at 2:55 pm
  • Reply Ashley

    These pictures are seriously ridiculous – I want one for lunch right now! I love Panera. Even with all the good sandwich places we have in nyc, I still think they do a bang up job and go there every time I’m visiting my family down south.

    February 13, 2013 at 7:12 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      hah thats right, you have some killer delis in your parts. Im incredibly envious! I love Panera too though! This is my favorite sandwich! Thanks girl!

      February 13, 2013 at 8:41 pm
  • Reply Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

    The Frontega is one of my favorite things to get at Panera so this is totally going on my to-do list!

    February 14, 2013 at 5:20 am
  • Reply katie

    This is one of my favorite sandwiches from Panera, too! I also am boring and order just about the same thing every time I go! Great job recreating the recipe!

    February 18, 2013 at 1:19 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      hah we can’t help what we like! Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚

      February 18, 2013 at 7:04 pm
  • Reply Rachel

    How do you cook your chicken? Do you shred it or cut it up?

    April 18, 2013 at 8:00 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      For this I just shredded up a chicken breast. You could also just shred a pre-made rotisserie chicken to go even quicker!

      April 19, 2013 at 1:11 am
  • Reply Yuri

    I love frontega chicken, but as far as my taste buds go, I feel comfortable to declare that they use smoked chicken and not just the regular one.

    July 5, 2013 at 8:26 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh maybe! but this copycat is completely amazing too! ๐Ÿ™‚

      July 9, 2013 at 11:57 am
      • Reply HG

        As someone currently employed there, I can verify that it’s smoked pulled chicken. ๐Ÿ™‚

        July 17, 2016 at 8:05 pm
  • Reply gary

    I love this recipe. I did add a little mesquite liquid smoke to the mayo spread since I can’t source a smoked chicken here. Thanks sharing this recipe and great photos!!

    January 1, 2014 at 5:34 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh that’s a great idea! Im so glad you enjoyed it! Thank you! ๐Ÿ™‚

      January 2, 2014 at 3:49 pm
  • Reply Rosetta

    I cannot wait to try this recipe. The Frontega Chicken Sandwich is the only thing I order when I go to Panera Bread. Thank you!

    January 2, 2014 at 10:08 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh I love it too! I order it as part of my pick-two every time! Enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

      January 4, 2014 at 2:21 am
  • Reply Kay

    Thanks for this. I have a hankering for one today and can’t go out to Panera or out to get the chipotle in adobe…So I scoured around and used the mayo, sour cream, a smidge of smoked paprika, a dash of garlic powder and a dash of cumin. Pretty good!! But soon as this weather breaks I will be off to get the chipotle in adobe. But this little concoction I used is pretty tasty, too! TFS!

    February 9, 2014 at 6:51 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      So creative! Way to get inventive, that’s awesome! I am so happy that you enjoyed it!

      February 12, 2014 at 3:17 am
  • Reply Megan

    I absolutely love this it is just as good or maybe better then the original. To cheat i did use an already made Rotisserie chicken from walmart and basil does not stay good for more then a day or 2 so i use the jar

    February 11, 2014 at 6:34 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      I totally cheat and use a rotisserie sometimes too! (Saves lots of time!) I am SO happy that you liked it! Thank you for sharing!! ๐Ÿ™‚

      February 12, 2014 at 3:44 am
  • Reply Katherine

    I stumbled across this recipe of yours a few weeks ago while looking for a frontega copycat…finally got around to making it tonight and my husband and I both LOVED it! Super quick and simple to put together. Thanks for posting!

    April 15, 2014 at 9:08 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh I am SO glad to hear that you both enjoyed it! It’s one of our favorites to! Thank you so much!

      April 16, 2014 at 12:11 am
  • Reply Renee' Smith

    I found your Panera Panini recipe when I was searching for sandwiches to make with my boyfriend. We both LOVE to cook, especially my boyfriend, who I’ve nicknamed Betty Crocker. So we made the sandwich last night and tonight with the leftovers and both times were amazing. One thing I added was to the sandwich spread was salt and garlic powder for an extra burst of flavor. Thank you for sharing this recipe and I have loved reading your blog. It’s very entertaining with your pictures and things about yourself, family and love of cooking. I am sharing your blob with my Mom and foodie friends. I will post on fb my pics with a link to your site. Thank you again!! Sincerely, Renee’ Smith in Dallas, Texas

    July 12, 2014 at 11:58 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh Thanks you SO much! First, I am so glad that you guys enjoyed the sandwich! (love the additions to the spread!) Secondly, thank you, thank you, thank you for your kind words. They really do mean so much, and Im so grateful! Im so happy that you like reading! I hope you continue to enjoy, and thank you for sharing!

      July 13, 2014 at 3:42 pm
  • Reply Tricia Curry

    Seriously?! This is my all time fav sandwich. I cant wait to try your version I am stopping a the grocery store on the way home!!!!!

    August 7, 2014 at 12:45 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      I hope you enjoyed! I love it SO much!

      August 10, 2014 at 11:12 am
  • Reply Molly

    I just made this for my family. This is going into our recipe file for sure – I love this sandwich and it is so easy to make for a weeknight dinner. I would have never guessed what the sauce was – I’ve been eating it for years at Panera and had no idea. Thanks for sharing!

    September 3, 2014 at 5:58 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      oh Im SO happy to hear that you all loved it! It’s one of my favorites!

      September 4, 2014 at 11:04 am
  • Reply Brianna

    I have been craving this for WEEKS! (I work so close to a Panera, but as a third shifter… it’s hard to catch them when they’re open!)
    I want to try this so bad.

    But what is “1 chipotle in adobo, minced ” Is that a seasoning?

    I can’t wait to try this. It looks TOO easy and super delicious of course. ๐Ÿ˜›

    September 8, 2014 at 7:30 am
    • Reply Alaina

      oh I used to work 3d shift, I totally understand!
      Chipotle in adobo is in a can, usually with the other mexican type foods in the grocery store.
      Hope you enjoy!

      September 8, 2014 at 12:44 pm
      • Reply Brianna

        I made it for dinner today and it was so good! I used wheat naan bread instead of foccatia (bakery was out) and I forgot fresh basil so I seasoned the chicken with basil instead. I thought the chipotle pepper made it way too spicy (but I’m the kind of girl who thinks even mild salsa is too spicy!) I think next time I’ll try it with ranch sauce and liquid smoke! (Just to put a twist on it) but I do recommend one use liquid smoke to make it taste more like the Paneras but thank you thank you THANK YOU for this recipe. It was amazing!!!

        September 8, 2014 at 7:15 pm
        • Reply Alaina

          I love the idea of liquid smoke, thats a great idea, Ill have to try it too! So glad that you enjoyed it!!

          September 9, 2014 at 10:37 am
  • Reply Zach H

    Genius, just what I needed. Thank you.

    December 7, 2014 at 11:42 am
    • Reply Alaina

      thanks, enjoy!

      December 7, 2014 at 1:03 pm
  • Reply lee

    thank you for sharing this amazing recipe. I made it for dinner tonight and both my husband and I couldn’t tell the different from the store’s panini. This is sure to a be a regular thing in our household now. Thank you so much!!!

    December 8, 2014 at 9:42 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      I am so glad that you guys both enjoyed it! that makes me so happy! thank you!

      December 10, 2014 at 8:23 pm
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  • Reply HG

    I work at Panera and this is pretty close to what we serve. For future Panera copycat ideas you can always ask your cashier for what’s in anything on the menu (soups and pastas are harder to do this for). We’re happy to help ๐Ÿ™‚

    July 17, 2016 at 8:10 pm
    • Reply Alaina

      awesome! thats so great to know, thank you!

      July 19, 2016 at 10:02 am
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