Vitamin B12 or folate is crucial for overall health and is a key player in the function of DNA, vital in forming red blood cells and developing the brain and nervous system. Symptoms of B12 deficiency include tiredness, depression, a pale yellow tinge to your skin, pins and needles, irritability, and disturbed vision among others, according to the United Kingdom National Health Service.

The right amount of vitamin B12 is important for all of us, but even more important for plant-based eaters because most foods that contain the vitamin are derived from animal sources. The recommended daily amount is 2.4 micrograms for adults, according to the Mayo Clinic.

However, a variety of vegan foods contain vitamin B12, such as cremini mushrooms, nori (a type of seaweed), tempeh, nutritional yeast, chlorella (green algae), and fortified plant-based milk and cereals. We compiled a list of plant-based recipes that include ingredients packed with vitamin B12.

Nutritional yeast cheese sauce

1. Homemade, Dairy-Free Nutritional Yeast Cheese Sauce

Every grilled cheese, nacho platter, or quesadilla needs the perfect cheese sauce, and we have a recipe that calls for nutritional yeast, a flakey yellow powder that contains B12. All you need is a blender to make this easy recipe. Remember to soak the cashews for 30 minutes prior to making the sauce.

Recipe: Homemade, Dairy-Free Nutritional Yeast Cheese Sauce


2. Vegan Polenta Frittata With Mushrooms, Tomatoes, and Basil

Looking for a delicious, energy-boosting breakfast? This vegan polenta frittata calls for cremini mushrooms, a good source of vegan B12, and other ingredients like tomatoes that contain antioxidants to help boost immunity.

Recipe: Vegan Polenta Frittata With Mushrooms, Tomatoes, and Basil


3. Vegan BBQ Tempeh Sandwich

Plant-based proteins that mimic meat like tempeh contain vitamin B12, so make this BBQ sandwich for your next pool or rooftop party and serve them as hand-held sliders. Everyone will love the taste of crunchy coleslaw, creamy vegan mayo, and chewy tempeh smothered in barbeque sauce.

Recipe: Vegan BBQ Tempeh Sandwich

attachment-Poke Bowl 09 (1)

4. Vegan Poke Bowl with Miso-Ginger Marinated Watermelon

Try this miso-ginger marinated watermelon poke bowl for an easy and creative dish to make for lunch on a hot summer day. This recipe calls for strips of nori, a type of seaweed that contains vitamin B12.

Recipe: Vegan Poke Bowl with Miso-Ginger Marinated Watermelon


5. Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice

If you're not a fan of poke or plant-based sushi, try our vegan kimchi fried rice garnished with nori, a good source of vitamin B12. This comforting and flavorful meal is ready to eat in just 15 minutes.

Recipe: Vegan Kimchi Fried Rice

Vegetable tempeh spring roll

6. Vegetable Tempeh Spring Rolls

For a healthy, delicious, protein-filled lunch or snack, make these vegetable tempeh spring rolls filled with crunchy greens, chewy tempeh, and creamy avocado.

Recipe: Vegetable Tempeh Spring Rolls


7. Healthier Cheetos

Make these homemade Cheetos with over 7 grams of plant-based protein for a healthier snack. This easy recipe calls for nutritional yeast which contains vitamin B12, thiamine, and plant protein.

Recipe: Healthier Cheetos With Over 7 Grams of Plant-Based Protein Per Serving

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