Nutritional Yeast is one of those unpretentious, easy to overlook superfoods.
I am all about finding and using high quality foods and adding more nutrient density to our foods to give our bodies more nutrition to thrive. So many of our foods (even organic ones!) contain less nutrients due to over farming and harvesting practices. Most fruits and veggies get harvested before they are at peak ripeness and then get transported all over the world.
Nutritional yeast is one of those powerhouse foods I learned to appreciate, especially since my daughter switched to a vegan diet and it became even more important to fuel her body with as much good nutrition as possible.
Nutritional Yeast ( also known as nooch or savory yeast ) is a deactivated yeast related to brewer’s yeast, which is used as a fermentation agent in beer making. You can also buy brewer’s yeast in the store, which is not the same as “nutritional yeast," so make sure you get the real thing.
Nutritional Yeast is grown on a food source — some brands use molasses — then harvested, heated, dried and crumbled. This process deactivates the yeast, and creates a wonderfully nutty, tasty, and versatile condiment or replacement ingredient for cheese.
Why is it called "nutritional?"
Just one tablespoon of nutritional yeast can contain*:
• 180% Daily Value B1 (Thiamine)
• 160% Daily Value B2 (Riboflavin)
• 70% Daily Value B3 (Niacin)
• 140% Daily Value B6 (Pyridoxine)
• 40% Daily Value Folic Acid
• 40% Daily Value B12
• 3 grams protein
• 1 gram fiber
*All values based on Bragg Nutritional Yeast Seasoning (available in all health food stores or online). Yeast itself does not produce B12, so if it’s listed on the label, it has been fortified with it.
Why is it good for me?
What does it taste like?
Nutritional yeast tastes absolutely delicious AND it’s nutritious. It has a subtle, mild flavor, making it easy to sprinkle on salads, soups and just about every dish. It shows up in many vegan recipes to add not only flavor but also powerful nutrition.
Is it common to have an allergy to it?
Most nutritional yeast is vegetarian, gluten-free and paleo-friendly. Some nutritional yeast is grown on whey, so be sure to look for a dairy-free or vegan label on the package if you have an allergy.
How do I use it?
Start with small amounts of nutritional yeast when adding it to your favorite recipes. Stir a few tablespoons into a pot of soup, salad, veggies. Taste, and add more until it’s just right for you. It is delicious sprinkled over popcorn or your favorite pasta — just like you would Parmesan cheese.
How do I store it?
To preserve all the B vitamins, store in a dark glass or a ceramic container to keep it protected from the light. Since it’s a dry product, you want to lid tightly sealed to keep moisture out — as long as nutritional yeast stays dry, it can last for up to two years
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