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Durum wheat vs Oats: Difference & Similarities

This article explains the key similarities and differences between durum wheat and oats, foods from the grains food group. Read on to learn more about the durum wheat vs oats comparison.
Dennis Gillett, Health & Fitness Writer

Written by Dennis Gillett, Health & Fitness Writer. Updated on January 28, 2023.

Durum wheat and oats belong to the grains food group, one of the staple food groups for people on a plant-based diet.

Grains and grain products are an affordable source of carbohydrates, as well as essential vitamins and minerals, including B vitamins (such as thiamin, riboflavin, and niacin), iron, and zinc, minerals that are usually harder to get on a plant-based diet.

They also provide a small amount of protein and healthy fats.

However, it is important to note that whole grains are generally a better source of these nutrients than refined grains.

This article will thoroughly compare durum wheat and oats and help you learn more about their similarities and differences.

Durum wheat

Durum wheat (Triticum durum) is a type of wheat that is known for its high protein and gluten content.

It is a good source of carbohydrates, protein, and small amounts of vitamins and minerals like iron, zinc, and B-vitamins. It is also rich in antioxidants and essential amino acids, making it a valuable food for vegetarians and vegans.

Durum wheat is commonly used in the production of pasta and couscous and also in traditional dishes like semolina porridge and bread. It is also used in some breakfast cereals and snacks. The high gluten content of durum wheat gives pasta and other products made from it a distinct texture and yellow color due to the presence of carotenoids in the wheat endosperm.

Durum wheat is gluten-rich. Thus, it is unsuitable for people with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease. It can be enjoyed as a balanced diet, combined with vegetables, lean protein sources, and healthy fats.

Durum wheat is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), and Vitamin E.


Oats (Avena sativa) is a type of cereal grain grown for their edible seeds, also known as groats.

They are a good source of dietary fibers, particularly beta-glucan, which has been linked to various health benefits such as reducing cholesterol levels and improving digestion. They also provide a good source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants such as vitamin E, zinc, iron, and manganese.

Oats are a staple ingredient in many breakfast foods such as oatmeal, granola, and muesli. They can also be used as an ingredient in baking, added to smoothies, and used as breading for meat and fish dishes. Oat flour, made from ground oats, can also be a gluten-free alternative in baking.

Oats are also considered a functional food, as they have been shown to positively impact health when consumed regularly as part of a balanced diet.

Oats is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin B3 (Niacin), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

Durum wheat vs Oats Nutrition

Now that we’ve described the origin, taste, and usage of these foods, we can move to the most interesting part – comparing durum wheat vs oats.

This comparison will start by comparing the caloric value of durum wheat and oats and their macronutrients and then go more in-depth by analyzing their vitamin and mineral content.

Durum wheatOats
Energy339 kcal389 kcal
Carbs71.1 g66.3 g
Sugar0 g0 g
Fiber3.4 g10.6 g
Protein13.7 g16.9 g
Fat2.47 g6.9 g
Saturated Fat0.454 g1.22 g

Durum wheat vs Oats Calories

Most calories in grains come from carbs.

Comparing durum wheat vs oats for weight loss, durum wheat is slightly lower in calories, with 339 calories per 100 grams, compared to 389 calories per 100 grams of oats.

However, both durum wheat and oats can and should be a part of a healthy diet, and neither one shouldn’t be avoided if you’re looking to lose weight.

Durum wheat vs Oats Protein

Grains and most grain products, including durum wheat and oats, are important sources of plant-based protein.

However, it should be noted that most grains, with the exception of quinoa and buckwheat, for example, are low in lysine and methionine.

That said, you can combine grains with legumes to get a complete protein.

Oats offers around 19% more protein than durum wheat.

Oats has 16.9 grams of protein per 100 grams, while durum wheat has 13.7 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Durum wheat vs Oats Carbs

Counting carbs can be important for some people for different reasons, including blood sugar control, weight management, or athletic performance.

It’s also important for people on a keto diet, so let’s compare the carbs content in durum wheat and oats.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 7% higher in durum wheat than in oats. It has 71.1 grams per 100 grams, compared to 66.3 grams in oats.

That said, 100 grams of durum wheat and oats contains 0 grams of sugar, the same amount.

Lastly, let’s take a look at the dietary fiber in durum wheat and oats.

Dietary fiber keeps the digestive system healthy and helps with weight management by promoting a sense of fullness.

With 10.6 grams of fiber per 100 grams, oats is a better source of fiber than durum wheat which offers 3.4 grams per 100 gram portion.

Durum wheat vs Oats Fats

Like most other grains, durum wheat and oats are low in fat.

Fats in durum wheat and oats are mostly healthy unsaturated fats. They are naturally cholesterol-free and trans-fat-free.

Total fat in durum wheat and oats:

  • Durum wheat: 2.5 grams per 100 grams
  • Oats: 6.9 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, durum wheat is 58% lower in saturated fats.

Durum wheat and oats contain 0.5 grams and 1.2 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Durum wheat vs Oats Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of durum wheat and oats.

Vitamins are micronutrients, meaning we need only a small amount. However, they are very important for many processes in our bodies.

Durum wheat has a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and vitamin B9 (Folate).

However, oats has a higher amount of vitamin B3 (Niacin), vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and vitamin E.

Durum wheat and oats contain the same amount of vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B12 (Cobalamin), and vitamin K.

The following table shows the exact amount of vitamins durum wheat and oats contain side by side, so you can easily compare them.

Durum wheatOats
Vitamin A00
Vitamin C00
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.419 mg0.763 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.121 mg0.139 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)6.74 mg0.961 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)0.935 mg1.35 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.419 mg0.119 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)43 µg56 µg
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.9 mg0.05 mg
Vitamin K0.9 µg0.9 µg

Durum wheat vs Oats Minerals Content

Minerals are important for our body to function properly. We need only a small amount of minerals, so they are called micronutrients.

Some minerals, like iron, calcium, zinc, or iodine, are relatively hard to get on a plant-based diet, so it’s important to choose your foods thoughtfully. This part of the durum wheat and oats comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Durum wheat is a better source of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, and phosphorus than oats.

On the other hand, oats is a higher amount of potassium, selenium, and zinc.

Durum wheat and oats contain the same amount of fluoride, and sodium.

Check out the table below to learn how durum wheat and oats compare when it comes to mineral content.

Durum wheatOats
Calcium34 mg54 mg
Copper0.553 mg0.626 mg
Iron3.52 mg4.72 mg
Magnesium144 mg177 mg
Manganese3.01 mg4.92 mg
Phosphorus508 mg523 mg
Potassium431 mg429 mg
Selenium89.4 µg2.7 µg
Sodium2 mg2 mg
Zinc4.16 mg3.97 mg

The Final Word

This article highlighted the similarities and differences between durum wheat and oats.

Grains, also known as cereal grains, are an important source of nutrition for many people around the world. They are a rich source of carbohydrates, which provide energy for the body.

Whole grains contain important vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins and iron. Whole grains, in particular, are high in dietary fiber and can help with digestion and weight management.

They may also have other health benefits, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.

Grains are also a staple food and an important source of food security in many parts of the world.


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