I love it when I see a dish I want to make and I have all the ingredients in my house. I experience a form of glee. While I don't mind grocery shopping, this joy is more about knowing my kitchen has evolved from just a handful of years ago when I didn't cook. It's like watching your yoga practice evolve. One day you can stand on your head. And then one day you know you've become a true healthy home cook when your pantry is stocked with items like ground chia seeds, coconut crumbs, slivered raw almonds and, yes, nutritional yeast.
Nutritional yeast has been called the vegan Parmesan. These yellow flakes are simply dried out yeast, the same strain used to make bread. In this form, it packs 3 grams of protein in 1 tablespoon. So, if I were a vegan, I would embrace this flake too. Some are even fortified with B12, an essential vitamin vegans may be missing by avoiding animal products.
Use nutritional yeast like you would parm, sprinkle it in last, like on popcorn or pasta if you eat them (both are inflammatory, btw). While it tastes nutty, the condiment's color tends to trick you into thinking it's cheese. Since I'm not a vegan, I would simply use parm. Just like cookie crumbs don't count, eating a tablespoon of parm once in a while barely counts as dairy to me. But give yeast a chance to see for yourself.
I found this recipe in Bon Appetit, my favorite food mag. The original recipe called for peanuts, which I avoid. More on that in another article. Here's my version with toasted silvered almonds. Use yeast or parm and enjoy!