Nutritional yeast is a great alternative to dairy products like cheese, it has a mildly nutty, cheesy flavor that goes well with many hot and cold dishes. It is a rich source of important vitamins and minerals, protein, and fiber. Many plant-based eaters use nutritional yeast as a condiment and as an ingredient to add a savory, cheesy, nutty taste to a myriad of dishes.
Nutritional yeast is made by growing S. cerevisiae on a sugar-rich molasses medium. Then, it is deactivated with heat, washed, pasteurized, dried, and crumbled.
These little yellow flakes are much more than an easy way to sprinkle vitamins and minerals into your diet.
Health Benefits of Nutritional Yeast
Nutritional Yeast can help lower your blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, the beta-glucans in nutritional yeast help do this.
Nutritional yeast is a healthy alternative as it is primary-grown yeast. That means it’s cultivated specifically for its nutritional value.
Fortified nutritional yeast is a B vitamin powerhouse. One tablespoon contains 30 to 180% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI) for various B vitamins. Some of these form naturally as yeast grows, and others — especially vitamins B6 and B12 — are added through fortification.
Nutritional Yeast is packed with protein, in only a ¼ cup, you’ll find eight grams of protein, three grams of fiber, very little sodium, and no sugar.
Studies have shown that just ¾ teaspoon of nutritional yeast per day can help boost your immune system. Nutritional yeast provides 160% of the Daily Value (DV) for vitamin B2 in one tablespoon.
You probably want to avoid nutritional yeast if you have a yeast allergy or if you have celiac disease or severe gluten intolerance.
To preserve the nutritional yeast vitamins and minerals store it in a cool, dry place like your refrigerator. When stored properly, nutritional yeast can last for up to two years.
Mushroom Fettuccine Alfredo
This healthy pasta dish is gluten free and nutrient-packed and also creamy and delicious.
- 1 large yellow onion, diced
- 20 Cremini mushrooms, sliced
- 1 large portabella mushroom, sliced
- 8 garlic cloves, minced (2 teaspoons garlic granules)
- 1 cup organic soy milk, unsweetened (or other non-dairy milk)
- ¾ cup cooked white beans, rinsed
- ½ cup water
- 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
- 2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
- ½ teaspoon black pepper, or to taste
- 14 ounces gluten-free fettuccine pasta
- 1 lemon, juiced
- ¼ cup fresh parsley, diced
- ¼ cup fresh basil, diced
- In a large sauté pan over medium heat, add onion and mushrooms. Keep the pan covered, stirring occasionally so the veggies don’t stick. After a few minutes add the garlic, continuing to stir occasionally.
- Once the onions are translucent and the mushrooms are cooked, turn of the heat and transfer half of the veggies to a blender.
- Add the non-dairy milk, beans, water, nutritional yeast, Italian seasoning and black pepper.
- Blend until smooth. Pour the sauce into the pan with the rest of the mushrooms and onions.
- In a medium pot, bring water to a boil. Add pasta and cook as directed. When pasta is al dente.
- Remove from heat and drain. Mix pasta into the Alfredo sauce and turn the heat to low-medium.
- Once the sauce is warm, stir in lemon juice and fresh parsley. Serve immediately.
- Sauce will thicken as it cools.