Must-Know Facts About Nutritional Yeast
Better Nutrition|February 2021
This vegan-friendly and B vitamin-packed ingredient adds a cheesy flavor to everything, from popcorn to potatoes.
MATTHEW KADEY

Once a niche food if there ever was one, nutritional yeast—or “nooch,” as the cool kids call it—has become all the rage lately, thanks to a swell of enthusiasm for plant-based eating. Its recent Insta-stardom has the non-vegan world curious as to what it is and if it does indeed make everything it touches taste like cheese. Here’s what you need to know about this wonder ingredient that deserves a spot in your spice rack.

What Is Nutritional Yeast?

Not to be confused with brewer’s yeast or the active dried yeast used to make bread and pizza crust, nutritional yeast is a deactivated form of the microorganism Saccharomyces cerevisiae with no leavening powers (please, don’t try to make a loaf of sourdough with it). It’s produced by culturing the yeast on a sugar-rich medium, such as molasses, for several days. After this growth period, the yeast is heated (i.e., pasteurized) and then dried for packaging. Since yeasts are members of the fungi family, like mushrooms, nutritional yeast is most certainly appropriate for use by vegans.

Why So Cheesy?

Even if it suffers from a less-than fun name, nutritional yeast brings both savory and salty flavors to foods that are typically mild in taste. This distinctive flavor profile can largely be attributed to its abundance of naturally occurring glutamate, an amino acid that interacts with specific taste cells in the tongue to unleash an umami, Parmesan-like wave of flavor. This makes the yellow flakes a good option for those who’ve ditched dairy, or for anyone who wants to add a cheesy, umami-rich punch to a savory dish.

Why It’s Good for You

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM BETTER NUTRITIONView All

HOW NATUROPATHIC DOCTORS TREAT TOXIN EXPOSURE

IF YOU’RE THINKING ABOUT STARTING A DETOX REGIMEN, IT PAYS TO CONSULT AN EXPERT FIRST.

4 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

Made in America

Meet American Tuna. This family owned company uses the most sustainable fishing method around—and they utilize only American ports, trucking, and canners.

4 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

SEEDS of CHANGE

Nuts may get all the glory, but seeds have plenty of healthy and culinary benefits too. Here are the ones to sprinkle into your diet more often as proof that great things come in small packages.

7 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

Get Moving!

You don’t have to spend hours in the gym to reap the health benefits of exercise.

2 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

Cleaned Up Keto

What it is, what it does, and how to make it as healthy as possible.

6 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

Follow Your Nose

When it comes to avoiding viruses and other contagions, keeping your nose clean may be just as important as washing your hands.

3 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

How to Protect Against Age-Related Muscle Loss

Here’s what you can do to prevent age-related muscle loss, a shockingly common issue linked to low energy, higher fall risk, and more.

4 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

5 Ways to Protect Yourself Against Indoor Toxins

One benefit of working from home is that you have much more control over the chemicals in your environment.

4 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

3 Tips for a Stronger Immune System

Cold and flu season may be behind us, but maintaining immune health is a year-round job.

3 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021

Get Your Beauty Sleep

While you sleep, your skin is working the night shift, repairing and regenerating itself. It’s important to give your skin a helping hand with topical treatments during those crucial nighttime hours when it is most permeable and best able to absorb them.

3 mins read
Better Nutrition
March 2021
RELATED STORIES

IN SEASON Chickpeas (GARBANZO BEANS)

Chickpeas appear in early recordings in Turkey well over 5000 years ago. India produces the most chickpeas worldwide but they are grown in more than 50 countries. An excellent source of carbohydrates, protein, fiber, B vitamins, and some minerals, they are a nutritious staple of many diets. The name chickpea comes from the Latin word cancer, referring to the plant family of legumes, Fabaceae. It is also known by its popular Spanish-derived name, the garbanzo bean. Kidney beans, black beans, lima beans, and peanuts are other familiar foods found in this legume family.

1 min read
Alternative Medicine
February 2021

A DIABETES CALLED LADA

HER JOURNEY IN DISCOVERING A DISEASE HIDDEN IN PLAIN SIGHT

5 mins read
The Good Life
February 2021

Your Anti-COVID-19 Menu – WHAT TO EAT NOW!

Every day, as we learn more and more about what makes the COVID-19 virus tick, we also learn more about what we can do to minimize our exposure and stay safe. Though we haven’t fully cracked the code and the end of the pandemic still feels a long way off, we do understand the three most important things we can do right now to protect ourselves: tame the inflammation the virus takes advantage of; get underlying health problems under control; eat to feed the good bacteria in your gut so they can keep your immune system operating at its absolute peak.

7 mins read
Delight Gluten Free
December 2020

Men Have Special Nutritional Needs, Too

As we age, our nutrition needs tend to get more specialized, depending on medi-cal history, family history, and physical activity level.

2 mins read
The Best of Times
January 2021

VITAMIN D, Pregnancy, and COVID-19

A virus has quickly, and very seriously, presented itself as a threat to all that we hold dear — taking lives, impacting our liberty and surely stealing our happiness.

6 mins read
Alternative Medicine
December 2020

Health & lifestyle

4 REASONS CELERY IS HEALTHY

2 mins read
Delight Gluten Free
October 2020

Full Range of Care

Bond’s Diabetes Clinic Goes Beyond Treatment to Education

3 mins read
Central Florida Health News
November 2020

Healthy Cook

Sweet Treats Everyone Can Enjoy

4 mins read
Central Florida Health News
November 2020

Diabetic Eye Disease

Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in the United States in adults. November is Diabetic Eye Disease Awareness Month. Over the past several years, the incidence of diabetes has grown as well as the rate of vision loss due to the disease. Diabetes can cause many eye problems. Here are three important things every diabetic should know to help preserve their vision.

2 mins read
Central Florida Health News
November 2020

MEDICAL Advice

November Is American Diabetes Month

2 mins read
Central Florida Health News
November 2020