Nutritional yeast (which is affectionately nicknamed “nooch”) is the secret weapon in many vegans’ pantries. It’s a flaky yellow powder that delivers an unmistakably cheesy flavor—if you’ve ever wondered why cheese tastes so much better than milk, it’s the yeast that makes the difference.
Whenever a cheesy flavor is needed, nutritional yeast delivers the goods. It’s great in vegan macaroni and cheese, quiche, and as a spaghetti topping. Once you try it on popcorn with some quality vegan butter you’ll never go back, and it’s also amazing on salads. Nearly all brands of nutritional yeast are vegan, but always check the ingredients to be sure.
Nutritional yeast is a great source of protein and minerals, including iron, selenium and potassium. Many brands of nutritional yeast are also fortified with B-12.
Most natural food stores carry nutritional yeast in their bulk sections, and you can also find it at Whole Foods, some traditional grocery stores, and online at Amazon.com.
Related reading: vegan cheese.