Nutritional Yeast Amino Acid Profile


It is surprisingly difficult to find the amino acid profile of nutritional yeast.

I had to dig around for a while, but eventually I found a study that had it (1).

The table below shows the data from that study, plus the amount needed to be considered a complete protein by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Note that amino acid profiles always fluctuate a bit depending on the manufacturer (for all foods, not just yeast), but this gives us a good idea of what to expect.

Essential Amino Acid Yeast mg/g protein Complete protein mg/g (2)
Threonine 46 23
Valine 49 39
Isoleucine 37 30
Leucine 64 59
Phenylalanine 33 30
Lysine 65 45
Methionine 14 16
Tryptophan 10 6

It’s a very balanced profile overall.

I think it’s safe to say that nutritional yeast is a complete protein, or extremely close to it.

Even though it falls a tiny bit short on methionine, that’s not really a fair comparison. The 16 mg/g from WHO is for methionine plus cysteine. The data for cysteine wasn’t available for nutritional yeast, but it’s a safe bet that it’s over 2.

About the author

Dale Cudmore

Your friendly neighborhood vegan from Toronto. Chemical engineer turned semi-professional soccer player and freelance nutrition writer. I've been vegan for years and try to make life easier for others by sharing what I've learned.

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