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The Breadbasket

219 North Main Street, Newton, KS - (316) 283-3811
Posted By Dale Fine on 5/16/2011 8:38:00 AM
I initially stumbled upon the Breadbasket after searching the web for bierocks in the Wichita, Kansas area back in 2003. For those who don't know what bierocks are, they are similar to the Runza served at the Nebraska chain that bears the same name. The ingredients include ground beef, onions, cabbage, and spices cooked inside bread dough. They were initially made by Mennonites from Germany who emigrated to Russia and eventually settled in Kansas and Nebraska, hence the name "The Bread Basket." The Breadbasket is a high plains cafe in the middle of Main Street Newton, a Mennonite community about 25 miles north of Wichita.

I returned to The Breadbasket in the summer of 2010. Although there is new ownership, nothing has changed. You enter the restaurant through the dining room, which is plain and nicely furnished with knickknacks. As you leave the dining room you enter the cafeteria-style serving area and place your order.

You can choose a sandwich or their homemade bierocks which usually run out before the end of the day. You also have the option of ordering a small or regular portion with the additional option of including soup or salad bar with your meal. My meal included a regular bierock (you get two), salad bar and, for an extra charge, the soup bar, too.

The bierocks are absolutely stellar. The bread dough is warm, soft, and fresh, and the complementing combination of beef, cabbage, and onions melds harmoniously with each other. Unlike Nebraska Runzas, which are usually rectangular, Kansas bierocks are circular.

The typical heartland salad bar includes several homemade items such as pea salad, German potato salad, sweet and sour cabbage, and apple raisin salad. The homemade soups include smokey green been and ham, a creamy chicken noodle soup loaded with hunks of chicken and soft wide noodles, and a chicken borscht soup. I couldn't even tell you about the display of homemade breads. Since my attention was completely diverted to the salad and soup bar, I forgot to get a slice or two. A plethora of pies greeted me at the end of the cafeteria line. I chose Toll House pie which tasted like a big soft chocolate chip cookie.

On Friday nights the Breadbasket stays open for dinner, with a German buffet, and on Sunday they offer a general buffet. The bierocks, soup, and salad bar are only offered at lunchtime during the week.

The Breadbasket is ample proof that the traditional heartland cafe is both alive and well.

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Scorecard

5 - Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Overall: Legendary - Worth driving from anyplace
Bierocks
Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken Borscht Soup
Salad Bar
Green Bean and Ham Soup
Tollhouse Pie
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Reviewers Photos [Upload Your Photos]

A bierock: ground meat, cabbage, and onion encased in warm bread dough.
"A bierock: ground meat, cabbage, and onion encased in warm bread dough."
Dale Fine





You have the option of one or two bierocks for lunch.
"You have the option of one or two bierocks for lunch."
Dale Fine


I couldn't tell you about the homemade bread that comes with each meal.  I was so preoccupied with the soup and salad bar that I forgot to get a slice or two.
"I couldn't tell you about the homemade bread that comes with each meal. I was so preoccupied with the soup and salad bar that I forgot to get a slice or two."
Dale Fine


From the salad bar: clockwise, we have German potato salad, pea salad, apple raisin salad, and sauerkraut.
"From the salad bar: clockwise, we have German potato salad, pea salad, apple raisin salad, and sauerkraut."
Dale Fine


The Tollhouse pie tastes like a big soft chocolate chip cookie.
"The Tollhouse pie tastes like a big soft chocolate chip cookie."
Dale Fine


Chicken borscht soup: velvety sweet 'n' sour cabbage maintains its flavor but loses itself in the texture of the velvety broth.
"Chicken borscht soup: velvety sweet 'n' sour cabbage maintains its flavor but loses itself in the texture of the velvety broth."
Dale Fine


Hunks of chicken and soft broad noodles make this soup the perfect comfort food.
"Hunks of chicken and soft broad noodles make this soup the perfect comfort food."
Dale Fine


The green bean and ham soup is loaded with smokey ham and soft limp green beans.
"The green bean and ham soup is loaded with smokey ham and soft limp green beans."
Dale Fine


The menu offers several options for lunch.
"The menu offers several options for lunch. "
Dale Fine


The interior is plain but nicely decorated.
"The interior is plain but nicely decorated."
Dale Fine


The Breadbasket is a typical high plains cafe in the Mennonite community of Newton, Kansas.
"The Breadbasket is a typical high plains cafe in the Mennonite community of Newton, Kansas."
Dale Fine



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