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Quinoa vs. Brown rice — In-Depth Nutrition Comparison

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The main differences between Quinoa and Brown rice

  • Quinoa is richer in Iron, Copper, Folate, Phosphorus, and Magnesium, yet Brown rice is richer in Manganese, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B1, and Selenium.
  • Daily need coverage for Manganese from Brown rice is 15% higher.
  • Quinoa contains 5 times more Folate than Brown rice. Quinoa contains 42µg of Folate, while Brown rice contains 9µg.

Food types used in this article are Quinoa, cooked and Rice, brown, long-grain, cooked.

Infographic

Quinoa vs Brown rice infographic
Infographic link

Mineral Comparison

Mineral comparison score is based on the number of minerals by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
Contains more Calcium +466.7%
Contains more Iron +166.1%
Contains more Magnesium +64.1%
Contains more Phosphorus +47.6%
Contains more Potassium +100%
Contains more Zinc +53.5%
Contains more Copper +81.1%
Contains less Sodium -42.9%
Contains more Manganese +54.4%
Contains more Selenium +107.1%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 6% 56% 46% 66% 16% 1% 30% 64% 83% 16%
Calcium Iron Magnesium Phosphorus Potassium Sodium Zinc Copper Manganese Selenium 1% 22% 28% 45% 8% 1% 20% 36% 128% 32%
Contains more Calcium +466.7%
Contains more Iron +166.1%
Contains more Magnesium +64.1%
Contains more Phosphorus +47.6%
Contains more Potassium +100%
Contains more Zinc +53.5%
Contains more Copper +81.1%
Contains less Sodium -42.9%
Contains more Manganese +54.4%
Contains more Selenium +107.1%

Vitamin Comparison

Vitamin comparison score is based on the number of vitamins by which one or the other food is richer. The "coverage" charts below show how much of the daily needs can be covered by 300 grams of the food.
Quinoa
5
:
Contains more Vitamin A +∞%
Contains more Vitamin E +270.6%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +59.4%
Contains more Folate +366.7%
Contains more Choline +150%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +66.4%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +521.6%
Contains more Vitamin K +∞%
Equal in Vitamin B6 - 0.123
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 1% 13% 0% 0% 27% 26% 8% 0% 29% 32% 0% 13% 0%
Vitamin A Vitamin E Vitamin D Vitamin C Vitamin B1 Vitamin B2 Vitamin B3 Vitamin B5 Vitamin B6 Folate Vitamin B12 Choline Vitamin K 0% 4% 0% 0% 45% 16% 49% 23% 29% 7% 0% 6% 1%
Contains more Vitamin A +∞%
Contains more Vitamin E +270.6%
Contains more Vitamin B2 +59.4%
Contains more Folate +366.7%
Contains more Choline +150%
Contains more Vitamin B1 +66.4%
Contains more Vitamin B3 +521.6%
Contains more Vitamin K +∞%
Equal in Vitamin B6 - 0.123

Macronutrient Comparison

Macronutrient breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Protein +60.6%
Contains more Fats +97.9%
Contains more Other +75%
Contains more Carbs +20.1%
Equal in Water - 70.27
4% 2% 21% 72%
Protein: 4.4 g
Fats: 1.92 g
Carbs: 21.3 g
Water: 71.61 g
Other: 0.77 g
3% 26% 70%
Protein: 2.74 g
Fats: 0.97 g
Carbs: 25.58 g
Water: 70.27 g
Other: 0.44 g
Contains more Protein +60.6%
Contains more Fats +97.9%
Contains more Other +75%
Contains more Carbs +20.1%
Equal in Water - 70.27

Fat Type Comparison

Fat type breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains less Saturated Fat -11.2%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +43.1%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +194.5%
13% 29% 59%
Saturated Fat: 0.231 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.528 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 1.078 g
26% 37% 37%
Saturated Fat: 0.26 g
Monounsaturated Fat: 0.369 g
Polyunsaturated fat: 0.366 g
Contains less Saturated Fat -11.2%
Contains more Monounsaturated Fat +43.1%
Contains more Polyunsaturated fat +194.5%

Carbohydrate type comparison

Carbohydrate type breakdown side-by-side comparison
Contains more Starch +40.6%
Contains more Sucrose +∞%
100%
Starch: 17.63 g
Sucrose: 0 g
Glucose: 0 g
Fructose: 0 g
Lactose: 0 g
Maltose: 0 g
Galactose: 0 g
99%
Starch: 24.79 g
Sucrose: 0.24 g
Glucose: 0 g
Fructose: 0 g
Lactose: 0 g
Maltose: 0 g
Galactose: 0 g
Contains more Starch +40.6%
Contains more Sucrose +∞%

Comparison summary table

Pay attention to the rightmost column. It displays the amounts side by side, giving a clearer understanding of the difference.
Quinoa Brown rice
Lower in Saturated Fat ok
Lower in Glycemic Index ok
Lower in price ok
Rich in minerals ok
Lower in Sugar ok
Lower in Sodium ok
Lower in Cholesterol Equal
Rich in vitamins Equal

All nutrients comparison - raw data values

Nutrient Quinoa Brown rice Opinion
Net carbs 18.5g 23.98g Brown rice
Protein 4.4g 2.74g Quinoa
Fats 1.92g 0.97g Quinoa
Carbs 21.3g 25.58g Brown rice
Calories 120kcal 123kcal Brown rice
Starch 17.63g 24.79g Brown rice
Sugar 0.87g 0.24g Brown rice
Fiber 2.8g 1.6g Quinoa
Calcium 17mg 3mg Quinoa
Iron 1.49mg 0.56mg Quinoa
Magnesium 64mg 39mg Quinoa
Phosphorus 152mg 103mg Quinoa
Potassium 172mg 86mg Quinoa
Sodium 7mg 4mg Brown rice
Zinc 1.09mg 0.71mg Quinoa
Copper 0.192mg 0.106mg Quinoa
Manganese 0.631mg 0.974mg Brown rice
Selenium 2.8µg 5.8µg Brown rice
Vitamin A 5IU 0IU Quinoa
Vitamin E 0.63mg 0.17mg Quinoa
Vitamin B1 0.107mg 0.178mg Brown rice
Vitamin B2 0.11mg 0.069mg Quinoa
Vitamin B3 0.412mg 2.561mg Brown rice
Vitamin B5 0.38mg Brown rice
Vitamin B6 0.123mg 0.123mg
Folate 42µg 9µg Quinoa
Choline 23mg 9.2mg Quinoa
Vitamin K 0µg 0.2µg Brown rice
Tryptophan 0.052mg 0.033mg Quinoa
Threonine 0.131mg 0.095mg Quinoa
Isoleucine 0.157mg 0.109mg Quinoa
Leucine 0.261mg 0.214mg Quinoa
Lysine 0.239mg 0.099mg Quinoa
Methionine 0.096mg 0.058mg Quinoa
Phenylalanine 0.185mg 0.133mg Quinoa
Valine 0.185mg 0.151mg Quinoa
Histidine 0.127mg 0.066mg Quinoa
Saturated Fat 0.231g 0.26g Quinoa
Omega-3 - DHA 0.015g 0g Quinoa
Monounsaturated Fat 0.528g 0.369g Quinoa
Polyunsaturated fat 1.078g 0.366g Quinoa
Omega-6 - Linoleic acid 0.355g Brown rice
Omega-3 - ALA 0.011g Brown rice

Which food is preferable for your diet?

ok
ok
is better in case of low diet
Quinoa Brown rice
Low Fats diet ok
Low Carbs diet ok
Low Calories diet ok
Low Glycemic Index diet ok

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Vitamins & Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score

The summary scores indicate the extent to which this food can fulfill your daily vitamin and mineral requirements if you consume 3 servings, consisting of 100 grams of each (an approximation of 3 serving sizes).
Vitamins Daily Need Coverage Score
11%
Quinoa
13%
Brown rice
Minerals Daily Need Coverage Score
38%
Quinoa
32%
Brown rice

Comparison summary

Which food is lower in Saturated Fat?
Quinoa
Quinoa is lower in Saturated Fat (difference - 0.029g)
Which food is lower in glycemic index?
Quinoa
Quinoa is lower in glycemic index (difference - 13)
Which food is cheaper?
Quinoa
Quinoa is cheaper (difference - $2)
Which food is richer in minerals?
Quinoa
Quinoa is relatively richer in minerals
Which food is lower in Sugar?
Brown rice
Brown rice is lower in Sugar (difference - 0.63g)
Which food contains less Sodium?
Brown rice
Brown rice contains less Sodium (difference - 3mg)
Which food contains less Cholesterol?
?
The foods are relatively equal in Cholesterol (0 mg)
Which food is richer in vitamins?
?
It cannot be stated which food is richer in vitamins. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information. See the charts below for detailed information.

References

All the values for which the sources are not specified explicitly are taken from FDA’s Food Central. The exact link to the food presented on this page can be found below.

  1. Quinoa - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/168917/nutrients
  2. Brown rice - https://fdc.nal.usda.gov/fdc-app.html#/food-details/169704/nutrients

All the Daily Values are presented for males aged 31-50, for 2000-calorie diets.

Data provided by FoodStruct.com should be considered and used as information only. Please consult your physician before beginning any diet.