Nutritional yeast is an inactive form of yeast. The yeast is grown, usually in a culture with either sugarcane or molasses. After it is grown, the yeast is heated to deactivate it and then it is processed and dried. You will typically find it in the form of dried flakes. Nutritional yeast is popular in vegan and vegetarian crowds because of the amazing nutrition benefits it has that are often lacking in plant-based foods.
Don’t write it off if you are not vegan or vegetarian. Nutritional yeast is a ‘super food’ because of all of the added nutrients it has in just a little bit!
One of the biggest benefits is the amount of B vitamins found in nutritional yeast. It is rich in nutrients that many vegan foods are lacking, specifically B12. B12 is a vitamin that needs to be supplemented in a vegan diet because it is found primarily in animal products. Additionally, nutritional yeast is high in protein and most of the carbohydrates are in the form of fiber.
In just 2 Tablespoons nutritional yeast has:
5g of carbohydrates
3g of fiber
8g of protein
11.8mg or 980% daily recommended value (DRV) Thiamin
9.7mg or 750% DRV Riboflavin
46mg or 290% Niacin
1076mcg or 460% Folate
17.6mg or 730% B12
This is not like the yeast you use in baked goods like breads and rolls, because it is inactive it is only used to add flavor and nutrition to foods. It has an umami flavor, adding a rich savory taste to foods.
Add it to:
Popcorn, like this recipe
Kale chips or veggie chips
Roasted broccoli or cauliflower
Replace parmesan cheese to top pasta dishes like spaghetti or vegan mac and cheese
Rice bowls with roasted vegetables
Have fun experimenting with it!
You can find nutritional yeast here in Manila at Healthy Options. Most grocery stores in the US that have a health food aisle. You can find it in a bag or in a large spice bottle.