Unleashing the Secret: What is Nutritional Yeast Used for?

Nutritional yeast is a type of deactivated yeast that is used in various dishes as a seasoning or ingredient. It is a popular ingredient for vegans and vegetarians as it is rich in vitamins and minerals. However, many people still don’t know what nutritional yeast is or how to use it in their cooking. So, in this article, we will be exploring the various uses and benefits of nutritional yeast.

What is Nutritional Yeast?

Nutritional yeast is a type of yeast that is grown on molasses, sugarcane, and beetroot. The yeast is harvested, washed, and then deactivated by heat. It is a completely different strain of yeast than the kind that is used for baking bread.

The yeast has a yellowish color and is sold in flakes or powdered form. Nutritional yeast gets its name from the high nutritional value it offers, comprising various essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B12, zinc, and folic acid.

Why is Nutritional Yeast Popular among Vegans and Vegetarians?

Nutritional yeast is a popular ingredient among vegans and vegetarians as it is a great source of protein and vitamin B12. These two nutrients are usually found in animal products, and vegans and vegetarians sometimes find it difficult to obtain them from their diet.

Nutritional yeast is also a fantastic ingredient for adding cheesy and nutty flavors to dishes without using actual cheese. This makes it a great substitute for recipes that require cheese, such as macaroni and cheese, pizza, and pasta dishes.

How to Use Nutritional Yeast?

Nutritional yeast can be used in various ways in cooking. Here are some of the most common ways to use it:

  • As a seasoning for popcorn, roasted vegetables, and other snacks.
  • As a substitute for cheese in recipes like vegan mac and cheese or pizza.
  • As a supplement to increase the nutritional value of smoothies, soups, and sauces.
  • As sprinkled on top of salads and pasta dishes to enhance flavor and nutrition.

How Nutritional Yeast Benefits Your Health?

Nutritional yeast is not only a great source of vitamins and minerals but also provides other health benefits that include:

  • Good for the immune system: Nutritional yeast is rich in beta-glucans, which are natural sugars that stimulate the activity of immune cells.
  • Reduced inflammation: Nutritional yeast has anti-inflammatory properties, which help reduce inflammation in the body.
  • Improved digestion: Nutritional yeast may help improve digestion by boosting the antioxidant levels in the body.
  • Improved cholesterol levels: Nutritional yeast is rich in fiber, which may help improve cholesterol levels in the body.
  • Regulates blood sugar levels: Nutritional yeast may help regulate blood sugar levels, making it a great ingredient for people with diabetes.

Recipes that Use Nutritional Yeast

There are thousands of recipes that use nutritional yeast as an ingredient. Here are some examples of dishes that use nutritional yeast flavor:

Dish Ingredients
Vegan Macaroni and Cheese Elbow macaroni, cashews, nutritional yeast, garlic powder, salt, and pepper
Vegan Nacho Cheese Cashews, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, garlic powder, salt, and water
Vegan Alfredo Sauce Cashews, unsweetened plant milk, nutritional yeast, garlic, salt, and pepper


As demonstrated in this article, nutritional yeast is a versatile ingredient that provides many health benefits, especially for vegans and vegetarians. Nutritional yeast is easy to use and adds an excellent cheesy and nutty flavor to dishes without using actual cheese or nuts. So, if you’re looking for a delicious and nutritious ingredient, give nutritional yeast a try.


  • Can nutritional yeast be used as a substitute for cheese?
  • Yes, nutritional yeast can be used as a substitute for cheese. It has a nutty and cheesy flavor that makes it a great addition to various dishes.

  • Is nutritional yeast gluten-free?
  • Yes, nutritional yeast is gluten-free since it is made from molasses, sugarcane, and beetroot.

  • What dishes can I use nutritional yeast for?
  • Nutritional yeast can be used in many different dishes, such as popcorn, roasted vegetables, vegan mac and cheese, pizza, soup, and pasta.

  • Can nutritional yeast provide enough vitamin B12 for vegans?
  • Nutritional yeast is an excellent source of vitamin B12, but it might not provide enough of it for some vegans. Hence, it is always recommended to check with a medical professional before relying on it as the primary source of vitamin B12.

  • What is the difference between brewer’s yeast and nutritional yeast?
  • Brewer’s yeast is a byproduct of beer production and has a bitter taste, while nutritional yeast is grown specifically for their nutritional value and has a nuttier and slightly cheesy flavor.


  • https://www.veganfoodandliving.com/features/nutritional-yeast-the-vegan-pantry-staple-you-need-to-know-about/
  • https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/nutritional-yeast
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/nutritional-yeast

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