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Semolina vs Teff: How Are They Different?

This article explains the key similarities and differences between semolina and teff, foods from the grains food group. Read on to learn more about the semolina vs teff comparison.
Michael Whaley, Health Writer

Written by Michael Whaley, Health Writer. Updated on January 24, 2023.

Semolina 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 semolina and teff and help you learn more about their similarities and differences.


Semolina (Triticum durum) is a coarse, granular flour that is made from the hard durum wheat, a type of wheat that is high in gluten and protein.

It is a good source of carbohydrates, protein, and small amounts of minerals like iron and zinc. It is also rich in B vitamins such as niacin and thiamin.

Semolina is commonly used in the production of pasta and other traditional Italian dishes like couscous and gnocchi. It is also used in some breads, pastries, and other baked goods. It gives pasta a distinct texture and yellow color due to the presence of carotenoids in the wheat endosperm.

Semolina is gluten-rich, thus, it is not suitable for people with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease. Semolina can be enjoyed in moderate portions as part of a balanced diet, combined with vegetables, lean protein sources, and healthy fats.

Semolina is not an excellent source of any particular vitamin.

However, it contains a good amount of Vitamin B1 (Thiamine), Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), and Vitamin B9 (Folate) and some Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), 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).

Semolina 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 semolina vs teff.

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

Energy360 kcal367 kcal
Carbs72.8 g73.13 g
Sugar2.67 g1.84 g
Fiber3.9 g8 g
Protein12.7 g13.3 g
Fat1.05 g2.38 g
Saturated Fat0.15 g0.449 g

Semolina vs Teff Calories

Most calories in grains come from carbs.

Comparing semolina vs teff for weight loss, semolina is slightly lower in calories, with 360 calories per 100 grams, compared to 367 calories per 100 grams of teff.

However, both semolina 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.

Semolina vs Teff Protein

Grains and most grain products, including semolina 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.

Teff offers around 5% more protein than semolina.

Teff has 13.3 grams of protein per 100 grams, while semolina has 12.7 grams of protein per 100 grams.

Semolina 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 semolina and teff.

The total amount of carbohydrates is around 0% higher in teff than in semolina. It has 73.1 grams per 100 grams, compared to 72.8 grams in semolina.

There’s less sugar in teff than in semolina, 33% precisely.

That said, 100 grams of teff contains 1.8 grams of sugar, while the same amount of semolina contains 2.7 grams.

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

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

With 8 grams of fiber per 100 grams, teff is a better source of fiber than semolina which offers 3.9 grams per 100 gram portion.

Semolina vs Teff Fats

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

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

Total fat in semolina and teff:

  • Semolina: 1.1 grams per 100 grams
  • Teff: 2.4 per 100 grams

Speaking of saturated fats, semolina is 50% lower in saturated fats.

Semolina and teff contain 0.2 grams and 0.4 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams, respectively.

Semolina vs Teff Vitamins Content

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

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

Semolina has a higher amount of vitamin A, vitamin B1 (Thiamine), vitamin B2 (Riboflavin), vitamin B3 (Niacin), vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid), vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine), and vitamin K.

However, teff has a higher amount of vitamin B9 (Folate), and vitamin E.

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

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

Vitamin A09 IU
Vitamin C00
Vitamin D00
Vitamin B1 (Thiamine)0.28 mg0.39 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.08 mg0.27 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)3.31 mg3.363 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)0.58 mg0.942 mg
Vitamin B6 (Pyroxidine)0.103 mg0.482 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folate)72 µg0
Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)00
Vitamin E0.11 mg0.08 mg
Vitamin K0.1 µg1.9 µg

Semolina 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 semolina and teff comparison focuses on their mineral content.

Semolina is a better source of calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and zinc than teff.

On the other hand, teff is a higher amount of selenium.

Semolina and teff contain the same amount of fluoride.

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

Calcium17 mg180 mg
Copper0.189 mg0.81 mg
Iron1.23 mg7.63 mg
Magnesium47 mg184 mg
Manganese0.619 mg9.24 mg
Phosphorus136 mg429 mg
Potassium186 mg427 mg
Selenium63.2 µg4.4 µg
Sodium1 mg12 mg
Zinc1.05 mg3.63 mg

The Final Word

This article highlighted the similarities and differences between semolina 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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