Panda Express started over 25 years ago in Southern California, providing tasty Szechuan and mandarin dishes in a convenient fast food format. The first restaurant Panda Inn, was started in Pasadena California, by Chinese immigrant, Andrew Cherng along with his father, master chef Ming-Tsai Cherng. After the success of the Panda Inn, Andrew and his wife Peggy leveraged these tasty recipes from the Panda Inn into a new concept of quick service Chinese food. The first Panda Express opened in the Glendale California Galleria in 1983, and the concept took off from there. Today there are over 1200 panda express restaurants in the united states, yielding the company over 1 billion dollars in revenue.
Panda Express began with the recipes from Chinese master chef Ming-Tsai Cherng, but did not stop there. Today they offer traditional Chinese dishes, but have added many new creations from their team of talented chefs. Their most famous dish is a Panda Express original, Orange Chicken. The orange chicken is bite size pieces of chicken, battered and wokked with an orangy, chili sauce. In 2008 they introduced a new dish, Beijing Beef, a spicy mix of Beef onions and peppers, which has become almost as popular as the orange chicken.
Panda Express lets you make your own meal. They offer 2 and 3 entrée plates, a 1 entrée bowl, or you can go for broke with their Panda Express feast. You pick which entrees and sides you want for each plate, bowl, or feast offered. Kids can make their choice too, with a Kids meal offering a junior size entrée, side item, drink, and a chocolate chunk cookie. Find the nearest Panda Express restaurant by going to their website and searching on your zip code. There are about 1275 Panda Express locations in 38 states, Puerto Rico, as well as 2 locations in Japan.
Panda Express now offers a Wok Smart menu, where all items are less than 250 calories per single serving. These menu items are noted with the green wok smart symbol and include both entrees and side items. Check out their website for nutritional information as well as suggestions on Wok Smart meals, which are combinations of entrees and sides that combine for less than 500 calories. If you like spicier food, look for the red spice symbol on their menu noting items which are a bit spicier than others.
To add to the convenience, Panda Express offers drive through service in some locations. They also offer online ordering. Place and pay for your order online, and your food will be ready when you get there. For parties or other larger gatherings, Panda Express offers catering for these events. You can find their catering menu online. Simply phone in your order, fax it, or drop it off at the nearest location, and your order will be ready in time for your party.
As part of their community outreach initiative, Panda Express will partner with your non profit organization, club, team, or school for a fundraiser. On a given day, they will give your organization 20% of the profits that they make on that day. In exchange, you will market that event among your organization and the public, bringing in as many customers as you can. Check their website for details.
In addition to having a reasonably priced menu, Panda Express offers coupons periodically. Recent Panda Express coupons have included a free serving of Orange Chicken, and a free entrée item with purchase of a two or three entrée plate. Coupons can be found on their website, pandaexpress.com, as well as through many online coupon outlets. Also, check your local newspapers for these coupons, as well as flyers available at the store.
Panda Express has seen this tremendous growth in their business by offering inexpensive, but good quality Chinese cuisine. They offer both traditional Chinese cuisine and newer creations for the varied tastes of their customers. By keeping the prices reasonable, offering fresh, tasty items, and keeping their menu current, Panda Express has continued to gain loyal patrons. If you haven’t given them a try, look for Panda Express Coupons to start you off on the right foot.