Oats vs Teff: Difference & Similarities

This article explains the key similarities and differences between oats and teff, foods from the grains food group. Read on to learn more about the oats vs teff comparison.
Catherine Toledo, Journalist

Written by Catherine Toledo, Journalist. Updated on January 26, 2023.

Oats and teff 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 oats and teff and help you learn more about their similarities and differences.


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).


Teff (Eragrostis tef) is a small, gluten-free ancient grain that is native to Ethiopia and Eritrea.

It is a good source of iron, calcium, zinc, and B vitamins like niacin and thiamin. It is also a good source of dietary fiber, protein, and essential amino acids.

Teff has been linked to various health benefits, including improved blood sugar control and weight management. It is also gluten-free and easy to digest, making it a great option for people with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease.

Teff can be cooked and eaten as a porridge, added to soups and stews, or ground into flour to make bread, pancakes, and other baked goods. It can also be used as a replacement for grains like quinoa, millet, or oats in recipes.

Teff is an excellent source of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), and Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine).

It also contains a good amount of Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), and Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid).

Oats vs Teff Nutrition

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

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

Energy389 kcal367 kcal
Carbs66.3 g73.13 g
Sugar0 g1.84 g
Fiber10.6 g8 g
Protein16.9 g13.3 g
Fat6.9 g2.38 g
Saturated Fat1.22 g0.449 g

Oats vs Teff Calories

Most calories in grains come from carbs.

Comparing teff vs oats for weight loss, teff is slightly lower in calories, with 367 calories per 100 grams, compared to 389 calories per 100 grams of oats.

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

Oats vs Teff Protein

Grains and most grain products, including oats and teff, 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 21% more protein than teff.

Oats has 16.9 grams of protein per 100 grams, while teff has 13.3 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Oats vs Teff 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 oats and teff.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 9% higher in teff than in oats. It has 73.1 grams per 100 grams, compared to 66.3 grams in oats.

There’s less sugar in oats than in teff, 100% precisely.

That said, 100 grams of oats contains 0 grams of sugar, while the same amount of teff contains 1.8 grams.

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

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 teff which oats offers 8 grams per 100 gram portion.

Oats vs Teff Fats

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

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

Total fat in oats and teff:

  • Oats: 6.9 grams per 100 grams
  • Teff: 2.4 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, teff is 67% lower in saturated fats.

Teff and oats contain 0.4 grams and 1.2 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Oats vs Teff Vitamins Content

This section will discuss the vitamin content of oats and teff.

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

Oats has a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B3 (Niacin), vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), vitamin E, and vitamin K.

However, teff has a higher amount of vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and vitamin B9 (Folate).

Oats and teff contain the same amount of vitamin C, vitamin D, and vitamin B12 (Cobalamin).

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

Vitamin A09 IU
Vitamin C00
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.763 mg0.39 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.139 mg0.27 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)0.961 mg3.363 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)1.35 mg0.942 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.119 mg0.482 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)56 µg0
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.05 mg0.08 mg
Vitamin K0.9 µg1.9 µg

Oats vs Teff 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 oats and teff comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Oats is a better source of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, selenium, and sodium than teff.

On the other hand, teff is a higher amount of phosphorus, potassium, and zinc.

Oats and teff contain the same amount of fluoride.

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

Calcium54 mg180 mg
Copper0.626 mg0.81 mg
Iron4.72 mg7.63 mg
Magnesium177 mg184 mg
Manganese4.92 mg9.24 mg
Phosphorus523 mg429 mg
Potassium429 mg427 mg
Selenium2.7 µg4.4 µg
Sodium2 mg12 mg
Zinc3.97 mg3.63 mg

The Final Word

This article highlighted the similarities and differences between oats and teff.

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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