For those who enjoy a plant-based diet, nutritional yeast is a staple. This simple yeast is used as a condiment and as an ingredient in all types of vegan recipes. It is one of the best ways to add savory “cheesy” flavor if you have a food allergy.1
What Exactly is Nutritional Yeast?
Nutritional yeast is made from the same species of yeast as beer, bread, or kombucha. But it is a different end product.2 This type of yeast is inactive while bread has active yeast. All this means is that it has no leavening ability, so it won’t rise or reproduce… even if you eat it raw. It is a rich source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
How Is It Made?
While this type of yeast starts out the same way, the end product is different. This product is just deactivated yeast made from sugar cane and beet molasses. Then, it is deactivated with heat, washed, pasteurized, dried and crumbled. The end result is a yellow flake that can be shaken on food to add flavor and depth to a variety of recipes.
The Big Deal About These Yellow Flakes
Taste: It tastes good! The savory flavor has been called, cheesy, nutty, and even light umami. The taste is not strong so you won’t overpower your senses with smell or taste. You can use nutritional yeast seasoning. This is a good way to introduce family and friends to several types of vegan dishes.
Texture: It won’t ruin your favorite dish with a strange texture. The flakes dissolve; think parmesan cheese flakes. They melt and mix to create delicious and creamy sauces. You will be amazed at how similar to real cheese these flakes can be.
Nutrition: One tablespoon has 30-180% of the Recommended Daily Intake for B vitamins. These vitamins are vital to the following processes:
- Energy production
- Hormone regulation3
- For a vegan, these yellow flakes in daily recipes can help with B12 deficiencies.
It is a complete protein. Containing all nine essential amino acids that humans must get from food. If you are following a vegan diet, you may not be consuming enough amino acids in your plant-based foods. Supplement your diet with nutritional yeast. Get all the essential amino acids in the right ratios.
Less Fat In Your Diet
Nutritional yeast in food (instead of high-fat animal products) will cut the fat content. Use fewer high-fat cheeses and sauces to support a healthy heart and cholesterol levels.5 The nutrients in nutritional yeast can help you maintain a healthier lifestyle.
How To Use Nutritional Yeast
It is a versatile product, which makes it one of those “must-haves” in your cupboard. It can add savory flavor to so many dishes. Try some of these flavor ideas to add vitamins and minerals to your dishes:
- Dairy Free Vegan Mac and Cheese
- Dairy Free Lasagna
- Dairy Free Fettuccine Alfredo
- Umami flavoring in soups and sauces
- Thickener for gravy, sauce, soups
- Sprinkled over popcorn or pasta with olive oil for added flavor
- “Cheese” substitute in vegan sauces
Easy To Buy
Yet another great thing about nutritional yeast is product availability. It can be found in most health food stores, online, and even in supplement stores. It isn’t a costly item and when stored properly, it can last up to two years. Keep it tightly sealed in a cool, dark place. This helps retain vitamins and minerals. You only need small amounts of yeast seasoning to create that big flavor.
Use It Daily
Nutritional yeast is a versatile product that can be used to make all kinds of food taste better. It will also add nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and protein to your food. With something as easy as a sprinkle, your food can be healthier and meet your nutritional needs.
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