Top 10 Grains Highest in Protein

Written by Daisy Whitbread, MScN

Grains are a staple source of calories, carbohydrates, b-vitamins, and protein. Whole unrefined grains provide more protein for each carb because the bran and germ of grains contain the most protein per carb.

The current daily value (%DV) for protein is 50 grams per day, and is a target meant for most people. Grains high in protein include cornmeal, kamut (wheat berries), teff, quinoa, whole wheat pasta, wild rice, millet, couscous, oatmeal, and buckwheat. One cup of cooked whole grains provides between 6-20% of the DV for protein.

For more grains high in protein see the extended list of protein rich grains, and complete vegetarian protein foods.

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List of High Protein Grains

Kamut1 Kamut (Khorasan - Wheat)
  • 20% DV (9.8g) protein per cup
  • 17% DV (8.7g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 11% DV (5.7g) protein per 100 grams
Teff2 Teff
  • 20% DV (9.8g) protein per cup
  • 15% DV (7.7g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 8% DV (3.9g) protein per 100 grams
A bowl of quinoa3 Quinoa
  • 16% DV (8.1g) protein per cup
  • 15% DV (7.3g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 9% DV (4.4g) protein per 100 grams
Whole Wheat Spaghetti4 Whole Wheat Pasta
  • 14% DV (7g) protein per cup
  • 16% DV (8g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 12% DV (6g) protein per 100 grams
Wild Rice5 Wild Rice
  • 13% DV (6.5g) protein per cup
  • 16% DV (7.9g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 8% DV (4g) protein per 100 grams
Millet6 Millet
  • 12% DV (6.1g) protein per cup
  • 12% DV (5.9g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 7% DV (3.5g) protein per 100 grams
Couscous7 Coucous
  • 12% DV (6g) protein per cup
  • 14% DV (6.8g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 8% DV (3.8g) protein per 100 grams
A bowl of oatmeal with blueberries8 Oatmeal
  • 12% DV (5.9g) protein per cup
  • 14% DV (7.2g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 5% DV (2.5g) protein per 100 grams
Buckwheat9 Buckwheat
  • 11% DV (5.7g) protein per cup
  • 15% DV (7.3g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 7% DV (3.4g) protein per 100 grams
Cornmeal10 Cornmeal (Grits)
  • 9% DV (4.4g) protein per cup
  • 10% DV (4.8g) protein per 200 calorie serving
  • 3% DV (1.7g) protein per 100 grams

See All 1 Grains High in Protein

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More Protein Rich Grains

#1 Spelt21% DV (10.7g) 1 cup
#2 Amaranth19% DV (9.3g) 1 cup
#3 Oat Bran14% DV (7g) 1 cup
#4 Soba Noodles12% DV (5.8g) 1 cup
#5 Bulgur11% DV (5.6g) 1 cup
#6 Brown Rice11% DV (5.5g) 1 cup
#7 White Rice9% DV (4.6g) 1 cup
#8 Pearled Barley7% DV (3.5g) 1 cup

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Data Sources and References

  1. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 28.