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Applebee’s offering $1 Bahama Mamas all February

Applebee’s is kicking off February by offering $1 Bahama Mamas all month.

The restaurant chain said in a Thursday news release that the drink, called the Dollarmama, will be available from open to close at participating locations.

>> Read more trending news 

According to Applebee’s, the drink is made with white rum and a mix of lime juice, pineapple juice and orange juice, with hints of coconut and cherry flavors.

“We’re proud to introduce our own unique twist on the popular Bahama Mama drink to our guests,” Patrick Kirk, vice president of beverage innovation at Applebee’s said in a statement. “We know Applebee’s fans are going to love the tropical fruit flavors of the new recipe we created just for the Dollarmama. For $1 you can experience the perfect winter getaway in a glass.”

Last year, Applebee’s offered its spins on a margarita for $1 throughout October and a Long Island Iced Tea for $1 throughout December. It appears the chain is offering a similar $1 drink deal every other month, so fans could expect another one in April.

Find out which locations are participating in the Dollarmama offer at

Panera Bread recalls cream cheese products over listeria fears

Panera Bread has issued a recall of all cream cheese products from its U.S. bakery cafes over fears of listeria contamination.

The chain said the recall was out of "an abundance of caution" after samples of one product from a single production day showed positive for listeria monocytogenes bacteria. Exposure to the bacteria can cause fever and diarrhea, with particularly dangerous symptoms for pregnant women and unborn children. 

>> Read more trending news 

Products recalled have an expiration date on or before April 2, 2018. 

The recall includes all 2 oz. and 8 oz. cream cheese products

The associated facility stopped production, as well. 

According to the CDC, about 1,600 people become infected with listeria each year, killing about 260. 

If you have these products, discard them immediately and contact Panera Bread Customer Service at 1-855-6-PANERA from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. CST Monday through Sunday or visit for a full refund.

Cheesecake Factory's famous brown bread is headed to grocery stores

Cheesecake Factory fans rejoice! Starting this week, you’ll be able to enjoy one of the restaurant’s staples in the comfort of your own home.

The chain has announced that it’s rolling out its popular brown bread to grocery stores nationwide. The bread will be available to customers for purchase in three different forms: an eight-pack of heat-and-serve dinner rolls, a two-pack with mini baguettes or pre-sliced sandwich loaves. 

>> Read more trending news 

The rolls and baguettes have a suggested price of $3.49, while the sandwich loaves are listed for $4.49.

The bread made from whole wheat flour is similar in calorie count to bread from other brands, coming in at just 110 calories per dinner roll and 80 calories per loaf slice.

People who have tried it reportedly have confirmed that it’s just as soft, chewy and slightly sweet as it is when you visit the Cheesecake Factory – just heat up the rolls or baguettes in the oven for five minutes at 350 degrees. Once they’re done, top them with butter or your favorite spread to add flavor.

The brown bread is part of the restaurant’s Cheesecake Factory at Home line, which includes several other products — cheesecake mix, coffee creamer and chocolates — that are available at grocery stores.

Chris Pratt loved and nuzzled his sheep. Then he ate him.

The sheep on actor Chris Pratt’s farm had a glorious life on his way to the menu.

“He was groomed and shorn, his hooves medicated, de-wormed, no antibiotics necessary,” Pratt, who has filmed movies including “Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2” and “Passengers” in Atlanta, said in a lengthy Instagram post. “Surrounded by laughing loving humans, including children to whom they provided such joy. Nuzzled, pet and loved every day.”

>> Read more trending news 

The sheep’s transition to his “final destination” as Pratt put it, was trauma-free: “Just a touch of a USDA certified wand to his head and he goes to sleep. The other sheep don’t even notice. It’s like unplugging a TV.”

Related: What time Chris Pratt showed up at a Fayette Kiwanis Club festival

The post has sparked impassioned responses from people who either applaud Pratt’s thoughtful approach to farm-to-table living or are totally freaked out that he plans to eat a creature he described in such tender terms.

“This absolute (expletive) literally just compared killing another sentient being to unplugging a TV,” one commenter posted. “You cannot justify the needless killing or unnaturally ending the life of an animal simply by saying ‘they had a good life.'”

Said another: “This is death. This is not food.”

A supporter posted, “It’s pathetic that people are commenting on here about how ‘terrible’ this is but it’s not affecting you! This is an animal from Chris’ farm and as a farm animal the cycle is a happy life then being used for consumption.”

Then a bunch of people started arguing over whether it’s healthier to eat meat or to consume only a vegetarian or vegan diet. Finally one guy introduced some levity by posting: “Poor Rocket!”

Here’s a previously posted photo; it’s not clear if the sheep posing for the camera is the one now on the dinner table.

White Castle will offer romantic Valentine’s Day package, reservations again

Fast food icon White Castle once again will offer its romantic Valentine’s Day package for those in love, but on a budget.

White Castle is now accepting reservations for its annual Valentine’s Day Dinner and for the first time, the chain is using, or the reservation app, to allow diners to secure their spot for the traditional dinner with a twist, reported.

>> Read more trending news 

This year, like in years past, White Castle will offer its original slider and veggie slider.  To throw love into the meal, it’s also serving up a chocolate-covered strawberry smoothie, a combination of strawberries and vanilla yogurt that is topped with Ghirardelli chocolate sauce. It will also decorate the locations in red and pink balloons, throw tablecloths on the tables and give menus to its guests, Delish reported.

To make a reservation, either use OpenTable or you can call the local numbers listed here.

Mary B's frozen biscuits recalled due to listeria concerns

Be sure to check your freezer because there’s a new recall on frozen biscuits that were sold in nearly two dozen states.

>> Biscuits recalled over listeria concern

Hom/Ade Foods is recalling Mary B’s brand biscuits due to listeria concerns. The biscuits were sold in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

>> Read more trending news 

Company officials said the problem was discovered in a product sampling conducted by an outside company that manufactured the product.

Listeria can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, elderly people and others with weakened immune systems.

The Mary B’s products affected are frozen bagged biscuits. All have “Best If Used By" dates before Sept. 23, 2018, and with the letter “M” immediately after the date.

UPC codes affected by the recall:

  • 2059300015 MARY B’S BUTTERMILK BISCUITS 26.4OZ 12 / 2.2OZ
  • 2059300018 MARY B’S SOUTHERNMADE BISCUITS 26.4OZ 12 / 2.2OZ
  • 2059300022 MARY B’s BUTTERMILK TEA BISCUITS 24OZ 24 / 1OZ
  • 2059300028 MARY B’S THIN BUTTERMILK BISCUITS 28.6OZ 22 / 1.3OZ
  • 3059320583 MARY B’S 3.5 OZ JUMBO BUTTERMILK 144CT BULK BISCUITS 144 / 3.5OZ

Customers are urged to return affected products to the store for a full refund.

Read more here.

Chocolate could disappear as early as 2050, scientists say

There is some very sad news, chocolate lovers.

International Business Times reported that chocolate could vanish as early as 2050. Scientists are fighting to save the plant that brings the world the delicacy, the cacao plant.

>> Dogs at higher risk of chocolate poisoning during holiday season

Cacao plants can only survive in a handful of specific regions, but those regions have since become volatile. The plants are frequent victims of fungal disease, climate change and cocoa swollen shoot virus, or CSSVD.

Scientists and researchers at places like UC Berkeley and Mars Inc. hope to use technology to modify the cacao plant seeds to become adaptable to more climates.

And the technology wouldn’t just stop at cacao leaves.

Jennifer Doudna, geneticist and inventor of the CRISPR being used on the cacao seeds, thinks the experiment could change the way food is grown.

“Personally, I’d love a tomato plant with fruit that stayed on the vine longer,” she said.

But all is not terrible in the land of chocolate news.

>> Read more trending news 

World-renowned Swiss chocolatier Barry Callebaut unveiled another type of chocolate called “ruby chocolate” in September.

The pink-hued creation with berry undertones joined the ranks of dark, milk and white chocolate nearly 80 years after the introduction of white chocolate. The ruby chocolate does not obtain its color or flavoring from additives. Instead, the chocolate was created following over a decade of testing a special cocoa bean.

Subway's $5 footlong could bankrupt franchises, some owners warn

While the $5 footlong from Subway is one of the best bites for your buck in the fast food industry, business owners aren’t always fond of the deal. Some of them say it could even threaten their business.

Keith Miller, who owns three Subways in North Carolina, told The Washington Post that the ingredients in the sandwich cost him about $2, but after paying his employees and adding up all the overhead — electric, gas, rent and supplies — his store brings in a measly profit on the hoagies. When the company decided to drop the prices of its famous subs to $4.99, Miller and a number of other franchise owners sent a letter telling the higher-ups that such a move would have them staring down bankruptcy.

>> Read more trending news 

Subway isn’t the only company to keep prices low with the hopes of enticing hungry customers; Taco Bell, Wendy’s and McDonald’s both boast dollar menus. You’d probably have a tough time finding a franchise owner happy with the low-priced items, but Subway owners have been the most vocal about their complaints. They recently wrote a petition to the big wigs at the company, asking them to reconsider. Owners admitted that the cheap options bring in more customers but that even the increase in traffic “insufficient to make up for the lost margins.” The petition was signed by almost 900 people in 39 states.

Subway says the promotions are optional and that the majority of franchise owners don’t share Miller’s views. In a statement given to the Post, Subway claimed “we are in constant communication with our Franchisees and Development Agents … they are actively involved in many aspects of our decision-making process, and we welcome and encourage their feedback.”

As the minimum wage continues to rise, the prices of some products (like Subway’s sandwiches) haven’t risen to the level necessary for owners to make a profit. Miller says that when he bought his first franchise, he was bringing in profit margins as high as 18 percent. But that number has drastically dropped in recent years.

There are also a number of other problems facing franchise owners. The fast food restaurant industry has become more crowded and, on top of that, people are shopping less and less at fast food stops. And for most owners, the problems show no sign of letting up.

Starbucks touts Christmas drink for a limited time

Starbucks is getting into the Christmas spirit with a festive drink just in time for the holidays.

>> Read more trending news

The chain is offering Christmas Tree Frappuccinos while supplies last, Travel+Leisure reported.

The sweet, minty drinks resemble a Christmas tree with all the trimmings, with green whipped cream and sugar-laden ornaments. The drink has a peppermint and mocha cream base, while the whipped cream is mixed with matcha powder, Travel+Leisure reported.

The drink also contains a caramel drizzle, candied cranberries that serve as ornaments and a strawberry to “top” the tree.

Melania Trump, Karen Pence stop at Whataburger, treat press to french fries

First lady Melania Trump, along with second lady Karen Pence, traveled to Texas on Wednesday to visit with first responders and check on Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. And if there’s anything politicians (or in this case, politicians’ spouses) love to do when they’re on a visit, it’s make a stop at a purveyor of local cuisine. Trump and Pence flew through Corpus Christi, which means Whataburger.

>> Read more trending news

According to social media reports (including tweets from reporters along for the trip, as well as a White House official), the first and second lady stopped by the venerable Texas burger chain and walked out with at least some of those famous fries. The rest of their order is unknown (so far), but the tweets about the pit stop are quite a journey.

Reporters in the press pool said the first and second lady treated them to fries.

Officials in Texas approved. The orange and the white, as ever, proved to be a unifying force.

According to the San Antonio Express-News, Trump and Pence stopped at the Whataburger at 602 Padre Island Drive. 

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