A woman who posted a viral video "exposing" how Panera Bread prepares its mac 'n' cheese says she's now been fired from the company.
The clip, which was originally posted on the video-sharing app TikTok and has been viewed more than 10 million times on Twitter, shows an employee whipping up an order of the restaurant's famous creamy dish.
In it, the employee can be seen dropping a plastic packet of frozen mac 'n' cheese into hot water, then cutting the bag open and pouring the food into a bowl. The original video, captioned "exposing Panera," gained both outrage and skepticism from social media users.
"I'm cool with it being prepared this way but then CHARGING ALMOST $7 FOR A SMALL BOWL?!?!?!? OK THEN," one Twitter user commented.
"Y'all thought a chef was back there making pasta from scratch and hand grating cheese???" another user said.
Y'all thought a chef was back there making pasta from scratch and hand grating cheese??? pic.twitter.com/0JwXt8bdyZ
— Stanley's Mustache (@EdiblesKickinIn) October 12, 2019
But regardless of the mixed reactions, the video has now allegedly had some real-world consequences. The woman who posted the original video tweeted on Friday that she'd been fired for posting the clip.
"Lol i lost my job for this," the employee posted from her Twitter handle, @BriiRamirezz.
Panera Bread has not confirmed whether or not an employee was actually fired over the video, but the company did confirm the clip's accuracy. A spokesperson for the chain said in a statement to the Washington Post that the mac 'n' cheese is "made offsite with our proprietary recipe developed by our chefs."
"It is shipped frozen to our bakery cafes — this allows us to avoid using preservatives which do not meet our clean standards," the statement added.
For her part, the woman behind the video said she wouldn't be commenting any further on the situation.
"Can't say nothing else, they asked me not to and i gotta respect it," she tweeted Friday.
Still, social media users were quick to share their thoughts on the scandal, adding jokes and more thoughts on how the dish is prepared.
EXPOSED👏but we aren't surprised lol I've worked in food service for 7+ years. I remember Ruby Tuesday microwaving ribs in a pouch lol stop paying so much for this crap and cook at home
— Mira Scarlet (@Mira_Scarlet) October 13, 2019