Welcome to another “Ingredient of the Week” post. This week’s featured kitchen staple is Nutritional Yeast.
Like brewer’s yeast, nutritional yeast is a deactivated yeast, usually Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The yeast is cultured with a mix of sugarcane and beet molasses for about 7 days and then harvested, washed, dried and packaged. By the time you see it in the store, it’s a yellow flakey, powdery substance that closely resembles cornmeal.(Source)
Nutritional yeast has long been popular with vegetarians and vegans for its protein content and high levels of B-vitamins. Some brands (like the one I buy) also come fortified with vitamin B12, which is produced separately (by bacteria) and then added to the yeast.
Something I see all over the blogosphere, as they say, is vegan macaroni and cheese with a nutritional yeast-based cream sauce, but I’ve yet to try it. I’ve even seen people use nutritional yeast in smoothies and oatmeal.
Sure, it may sound a little hippie-dippy, but it’s totally worth a try!
Have you ever tried nutritional yeast? What’s your favorite way to use it?