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Nutritional yeast is a versatile inactive type of yeast (unlike brewer's active yeast) usually grown on sugar beets and sugar cane. It is a dry, brownish powder that is not quite coarsely ground but not fine either. When used in vegan "cheeses", it gives a good texture and somewhat cheesy-earthy taste. It can also be added to foods as a vitamin supplement as it naturally contains many trace nutrients including magnesium and copper. However, some brands of nutritional yeast are fortified with extra vitamins, including vitamin B12.
Nutritional yeast is a cooking yeast derived from a fungus, saccharomyces cerevisiae. It is sold in in powder and flake form, and is used most often in vegetarian and vegan cuisine to simulate creamy sauces such as fake cheese, but is also used as a general condiment.
Nutritional yeast is high in B vitamins and folic acid, and tastes sweet, salty and slightly nutty.
Nutritional yeast flakes are most commonly found for sale in bulk at natural or health food stores.
Important things to remember are
- Nutritional yeast is not the same as brewer's yeast, though Brewer's Yeast Flakes is a brand of nutritional yeast
- The recommended daily value of nutritional yeast is two heaping tablespoons and no more.