Who got the nooch?

by Holly on August 16, 2010

in fun finds

The most common question family + friends ask me is, “Holly, what the hell is nooch?”

Before you drop your healthy foodie jaw in utter shock, let me just say I can’t blame my loved ones for being scared of this vegan protein wonder.

Case in point: hooch, mooch, pooch, cooch (yeah, I said it) and nooch.

For starters, it’s just not in good rhyming company.

That’s okay however, because “nooch” is really just a pet name for what is more commonly known as nutritional yeast. Yes, I said yeast. Grown and cultured on enriched purified cane and beet molasses, this yellowish-hued yeast is then harvested, washed, dried and packaged.

When finished, it looks a little something like this…

You can get it in flakes (seen above) or a powder that looks oddly identical to cornmeal.

It’s vegan. It packs roughly eight grams of protein in two heaping tablespoons. It’s nutty, cheesy and yummy. And I love it. Not to mention, I can get hoards of it for cheap in the bulk bins of my local co-op.

Other health benefits of nutritional yeast?

  • It’s a complete protein (meaning it has all the essential amino acids for human dietary needs)
  • Good source of fiber
  • Rich in the B-complex vitamins (thiamin, riboflavin, niacin + pyridoxine)
  • Naturally low in fat + sodium

You’re probably saying to yourself, “Well Miss Everythingtarian, that’s just fabulous and all. But how do I actually USE this supposed wonder ingredient when cooking?”

Like this.

Sprinkled over a veggie egg scramble

As an extra cheesy layer of flavor on homemade English muffin pizzas

In a batch of noochified hummus

Atop a ginormous junk salad

Other ways of enjoying the nooch: Mae’s Pizza Cheese, mixed with marinara sauce (hello vegan cheesy marinara!), Cheezy Kale Chips, sprinkled on popcorn, used in place of parmesan cheese…the proverbial foodie sky is the limit on this one.

Have I convinced you to go buy some yet?


Have I?

So, tell me…

Are you a fan of the nooch? What are some of YOUR favorite ways to eat it?


Off to pack before moving my lil’ sissy to college – see y’all in the Rocky Mountain State!


Danielle August 16, 2010 at 10:11 pm

…Nooch scares me.

Coco @ Opera Girl Cooks August 16, 2010 at 10:14 pm

I just had some popcorn with nooch this afternoon! My favorite way to eat it, though, is on top of toasted sourdough bread, spread with Earth Balance and then sprinkled liberally with nutritional yeast. Make sure not to breathe out your nose when you take a bite, though, or you’ll spray the stuff everywhere =)

Evan Thomas August 16, 2010 at 10:15 pm

Try pumpkin oats with pb and nooch on top in the fall. I swear it’s magic.

Angharad August 16, 2010 at 10:31 pm

Yeah, apparently I am not on this health food bandwagon. It just doesn’t seem that appealing to me :(
I like hearing the term “cheesy” but mainly because it makes me want to grate cheese on everything, not yeast.

You will have to feed me some and change my mind!

Leianna August 16, 2010 at 10:32 pm

I tried it once and didn’t like it, but I think I need to give it another go because of how I used it. Your meals up above look great!

katie August 16, 2010 at 10:43 pm

i have some but i never use it!! youve inspired me to use it now :)

Run Sarah August 16, 2010 at 10:46 pm

I was totally scared of nooch at first but I am totally addicted. So cheap from Whole Foods bulk bins, too.

Liza @ Health Nutting August 16, 2010 at 11:05 pm

I have never tried nutritional yeast… but I just might thanks to this post! :)

Madeline - Greens and Jeans August 16, 2010 at 11:20 pm

My mom asks me about nooch almost weekly. “Oh and honey, what is this “nooch” stuff?”

kelsey@snackingsquirrel.com August 16, 2010 at 11:22 pm

Nom Nom Nom NOOCH <3 haha

noshing on Nooch.. haha sounds a little dirty ;)

I LOVE YOUR BLOG! i hope EverythingTarianism hits mainstream. or at least i need a shirt with that name on it! best lifestyle to follow :)


Chelsea (Chelsea's Chew and Run Fun) August 17, 2010 at 12:02 am

Haha, I love your rhyming courage.

I also love nooch on roasted brussel sprouts, broccoli, frittatas, eggs, salads, and even pasta.

Adam August 17, 2010 at 12:18 am

Sauteed Mushrooms in Walnut Oil with a nooch sprinkling… May sound gross… Try it, seriously! Have an amazing trip to my home state! I Love CO, and your sister will as well, i am sure of it. What a great school!

Laura August 17, 2010 at 12:19 am

I am a huge nooch fan, my fave way is to mix it with tahini, warm water and some herbs to make a great cheese substitute to have on my pizzas.

elise August 17, 2010 at 2:20 am

dude, my fam and friends have the same reactions! they actually call it cooch just to annoy me (gross). i like it in home-made hummus recipes, and atop savory oats, and on just about any and every other dish under the sun…hahaha

Jessica @ How Sweet It Is August 17, 2010 at 5:23 am

I love it, but I refuse to say that word. However, it helps me eat veggies! I love it on kale chips, salads, and really everything!

Amber August 17, 2010 at 5:41 am

I’ve never had it… but I must say I am completely intrigued by it. Hmmm I may have to go out and get some :)

Heather (Perspective Is Everything) August 17, 2010 at 5:44 am

I do like nooch! I first tried it when I got a free sample from the Braggs website.
Did you you get those mini Larabars at Willy st?!
I was there several months ago and asked if they’d be getting some. Would be great if they did!

Lauren August 17, 2010 at 5:45 am

I am a nooch virgin!! Which makes me want to try it of course. :)

Greg August 17, 2010 at 5:50 am

I can honestly say I’ve never eaten nooch. It sounds interesting though. Time to go see if I can search some out…

Erica August 17, 2010 at 6:00 am

I’ve never tried it! I know! I see it all the time. I think its about time I pick it up. I want to make some english muffin pizzas- haven’t had those in ages. Nom Nom

Christina August 17, 2010 at 7:17 am

hmm nooch. im not going to lie…never heard of it! but it looks great! especially on that pizza!!! i love love love ezekiel english muffins!

Sarah (Running to Slow Things Down) August 17, 2010 at 7:30 am

I’ve never ever tried nutritional yeast, but it sounds delicious. I seriously need to try it from the bulk bins at whole foods. It sounds like a nutritional powerhouse. :D

Maya August 17, 2010 at 7:37 am

I love the nooch! I was skeptical at first, but I use it all the time now. In fact, I don’t have any at the moment, and I’m going through withdrawal. I happened to be placing an iherb order when I started running low, and added some nooch so I could get free shipping. But I need some now! Maybe I’ll get some bulk bin nooch to tide me over.

Emily @ Relishments August 17, 2010 at 7:42 am

I keep thinking about trying “nooch” but I haven’t been able to find it…where in the supermarket/health food store does it live?

Leanne August 17, 2010 at 7:57 am

I love nutritional yeast and I love the food bloggies that introduced me to my long lost love! Have you tried the HEABified mac’n’cheese using “nooch”? It is my favor so far.

Jenna August 17, 2010 at 7:57 am

Is it just me, or was my mind in the gutter when I read the word nooch? I feel like im in highschool all over again, giggling from behind my desk. =)

But where can you buy this? I’m assuming online, but you didn’t provide a link.

Katie @ Health for the Whole Self August 17, 2010 at 8:28 am

I just saw that my local WF carries it in the bulk bins, so I’m definitely going to try it!

Matt August 17, 2010 at 8:37 am

My favorite way to eat it is on a big plate of roasted veggies :)

Rachel (tea and chocolate) August 17, 2010 at 10:10 am

I love nooch! I use it the same ways that you do, and also on savory oats. It makes a yummy mac and cheeze too.

Maura August 17, 2010 at 10:54 am

I’ve never tried nooch.

haha it feels weird just typing it.

i think you’ve inspired me to go buy some..i’ll keep you updated :)

Chrissy August 17, 2010 at 11:02 am

Nooch!<3 NOT to be confused with brewer's yeast…
I've been eating brewer's yeast for the past few weeks and finally found some nutr. yeast. it's sooo much better!
I have it in a PB/honey sandwich on cinnamon bread.. though adding banana would be excellent.

Sami August 17, 2010 at 11:49 am

LOVE nooch but one time it made me like turn red & itch and such. not sure why? i looked it up and found other people have had similar reactions! it’s great over steamed broccoli or sprinkled in eggs!

BroccoliHut August 17, 2010 at 12:06 pm

Well, crap. I just realized after reading this post that I left my big tub o’ nooch at my parents’ house several hundred miles away.

Megan (Braise the Roof) August 17, 2010 at 12:12 pm

I haven’t tried it- mostly because I’m afraid of fermented products (for digestive health reasons- I won’t bore you with the specifics), but the cheesiness that everyone is talking about has me intrigued…

Alexa @ Sohdalex August 17, 2010 at 12:44 pm

I have never tried ‘nooch’ and am in all accordance with you on the name ;)
BUT I definitely want to, very soon!

Kate@andwhenshesays August 17, 2010 at 12:46 pm

Oh my lawd I am a recent nooch convert and it is love. Seriously. I’m into sprinkling it on everything, but I also added it to a black bean burger recipe recently and it was awesome there too.

Katie August 17, 2010 at 1:01 pm

Yay your coming to my state!!

I always tell people that nooch is like a healthy version of parmesan cheese. Whatever you’d put parm on, you can put nooch on. Pizza, salad, veggies, etc.

Emily (A Nutritionist Eats) August 17, 2010 at 1:21 pm

My favorite is on eggs!

Rachael August 17, 2010 at 3:40 pm

I first started eating nutritional yeast while living in a commune. Homeboys and girls put it on everything, and I was hooked. Eight years and a ceremonial shearing-off of dreads later, I’m still a fan. I’ve heard it referred to as hippie dust (which I would think would refer to other things, but alas, my mind goes places it ought not too) – combine it with hippie juice (kombucha) and hippie rot (saurkraut) and you’ve got a holy trinity of foods endorsed by your friendly neighborhood intentional community.

Erica D August 17, 2010 at 5:48 pm

Mmmm, I love me some nooch on egg scrambles!

Hayley August 17, 2010 at 6:57 pm

I love mixing nutritional yeast (i won’t do it- you CAN’T make me say n**ch. gives me the creepy crawlies) with tahini, lemon juice, and water to make a sauce to pour over veggies. yum yum!

Emilee August 17, 2010 at 7:58 pm

Sold! I will get some on my next Whole Foods trip. I love trying new things.

Crystal August 17, 2010 at 8:18 pm

The LAST thing I need is something else on my grocery list! haha. I must admit, I am rather convinced to buy some now. I have actually never used it before and previously thought it was just for baking. I was obviously wrong. :)

Lynn @ The Actors Diet August 17, 2010 at 9:20 pm

i like nooch. i don’t love it *GASP*

Pure2Raw Twins August 17, 2010 at 10:03 pm

I love nooch!! I am so glad that I came across it a few years ago, now I am hooked ;) Love it with so many great things!! !

Lindsey @ Foodie on the Rocks August 18, 2010 at 1:16 pm

Awesome post!! I’ve had some in my pantry for a bit because I’d seen around on blogs, but I could never figure out WHY people were eating it (I figured there had to be some crazy foodie healthified reason)!! Thanks :D Now I have to use it!

Ijeoma (HerHonestLife) August 19, 2010 at 8:59 am

I swear, if they did a hair test they would find I am probably about 10% nooch these days. I love it in everything, but especially tofu scrambles and mushroom sauce.

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