Pre-Graves Disease, my plate was regularly populated by the mundane. I’m not saying that I didn’t experience any flavour – most of it was simply artificial, prepackaged junk. I couldn’t find my way through an herb and spice cabinet if I tried. Let’s say I was vanilla; great friends with salt and pepper, occasional late night tangos with cinnamon… These days I have a fully stocked herb and spice cabinet. And I have nutritional yeast – my nutritious, delicious go to flavour house. A vegan, vitamin B Complex that can make the most delicious, cheesy flavoured sauce – perfect for Vegan Mac and Cheese!
What is Nutritional Yeast
We’ve explored the amazing qualities of nutritional yeast before in my Nutritional Yeast Cheesy Dip post. But to this day I get asked about this product more often than anything else. It’s such a relatively unknown, flavourful, healthy powerhouse that demands curiosity!
Not only does it have a delightful, cheesy, nutty flavour, its versatile; add it to salads, stir fries, casseroles, steamed veggies, mashed potatoes and more, or use it to create cheesy dips and sauces that will leave you licking the bowl.
And hey, super bonus, as the name suggests it has a lot to offer in the nutrition department as well!
Nutritional yeast (lovingly nicknamed “nooch” in the health foodie community) is a by-product of the creation of molasses. Once it’s harvested, it’s washed and heated, making it an inactive yeast that will not froth or rise. This is why it’s so flakey, and man am I glad because that quality makes it the perfect option to sprinkle onto… everything!
So why should you welcome Nutritional Yeast to your kitchen? Here are a few awesome reasons:
Whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian, or omnivore it’s always lovely to have a one stop shop for all 9 essential amino acids!
Vitamin B Complex
Nutritional Yeast is often fortified with vitamin B12 (something many vegans are missing in their diets) and packs the rest of the B vitamin family. Not only does it offer you B vitamins, it’s seriously loaded with them! Check out the nutritional facts section of Bob’s Red Mill Nutritional Yeast:
That’s a ton of B vitamins in one ¼ cup serving. You need B vitamins to support your metabolism, cell production and growth. They also help your body to regenerate red blood cells and maintain a healthy nervous system. Bottoms up!
One serving of nutritional yeast packs 3 grams of fibre, 12% of your daily recommended intake, supporting your digestive health!
Shock and awe, our bodies love oxygen! And Iron helps to transport oxygen throughout the body. Low iron levels can cause fatigue, difficulty concentrating, dizziness, insomnia and ultimately lead to anemia, none of which are ideal! Healthy sources of iron are a wonderful addition to your diet.
Want a strong immune system? Support it with zinc! This awesome mineral is also important for growth and development, healing and healthy digestion!
If you’re not on the nutritional yeast train already, I’ve got one more awesome reason to give it a permanent spot in your kitchen! Vegan Mac and Cheese! Yes, I said it… Vegan Mac and Cheese! Whether your vegan, lactose intolerant like yours truly or dairy free for any reason, this is an amazing opportunity to re-experience a dairy free version of an old favourite.
I’ve tried many Vegan Mac and Cheese recipes, but hubby and I were never quite satisfied. Recently we decided to experiment until we came up with something that we loved. I enjoyed testing every prototype and I am so excited with the final product! I hope you love it too!
Vegan Mac and Cheese
This recipe is Dairy Free, Gluten Free and Vegan. Serves 4.
For the Pasta
1 340g Package of Rice Pasta (or pasta of choice). I prefer the Tinkyada Organic Fusilli or Elbow Macaroni.
Cook the pasta as per the cooking instructions on the packaging. Strain and set aside while you prepare the sauce.
For the Vegan Mac and Cheese Sauce
3 Tbsps. of Coconut Oil
1 Cup of Water
8 Heaping Tbsps. of Nutritional Yeast
2 Heaping Tbsps. Coconut Flour
1 Tbsp. Mustard
Juice of Half Lemon
1 Tsp. Dill
1 Pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt or More to Taste
2 Pinches of Garlic Powder
Optional – 2 Generous Pinches of Smoked Paprika
Melt 2 Tablespoons of the coconut oil in a medium sized pot or saucepan over medium heat. Add the water, nutritional yeast and coconut flour and stir until well mixed. Add in the mustard, salt, dill, garlic powder and smoked paprika and continue to stir. The mixture should be well blended and thick. Turn the heat down and add in the pasta, mixing the contents together. Add an extra tablespoon of coconut oil and mix well.
You can serve this delicious pasta dish as is… but I personally believe that veggies add so much oomph! This is why I suggest adding:
These are just suggestions. There are no reals in the veggie house, so feel free to add whatever veggies your heart desires!
½ Cup of Broccoli, Chopped
½ Cup of Cauliflower, Chopped
1 Large Carrot, Chopped or Julianne
½ Cup of Kale or Spinach, Chopped
Add them to the pot and stir well. Serve and enjoy!
Here is an example of the dish with different veggies! Make it yours.
Bon appetite health-esteemies! I hope that nutritional yeast finds a coveted spot in your kitchen soon!
Health and love,
Thought of the day: Try new things and get creative – you never know what you might discover!
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