Quinoa Nutrition Facts

An illustration depicting nutrition facts of quinoa
Illustration: Catherine Song. © The Spruce, 2018 

What is the nutritional value of quinoa? Quinoa is a great food, not just for vegetarians and vegans, but for anyone looking to lower their cholesterol or add healthy whole grains and extra fiber to their diet. Do be aware, however, that there are several different kinds of quinoa, so their nutrient content will vary slightly. 


Quinoa is relatively low in calories. One cup of cooked quinoa (185 g) provides 222 calories. But, of course, watch what you add to the quinoa, as it's in the cooking process that most of the calories and fat will be added, depending on how you prepare it. 


Quinoa is naturally low in fat but, as a seed, it does have a small amount. One cup of cooked quinoa provides 3.4 grams of fat. By comparison, 185 g of cooked lean ground beef provides 33 g of fat. Whoa! 


One of the best reasons to enjoy quinoa is because it has a very high-protein content, which makes it a great cholesterol-free and low-fat source of protein for vegetarians and vegans.

According to the USDA nutrient database, 1 cup of cooked quinoa contains 8.14 grams of protein. To put that in perspective, the recommended daily protein intake is about 56 grams for most men and 46 grams for most women.

In addition to quinoa, there are other good ​sources of protein for vegetarians.

Other Nutrients

Quinoa is a great source of iron and fiber for vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike. One cup of cooked quinoa provides 15 percent of the recommended daily intake of iron, and 5 grams of fiber, which is 21 percent the recommended amount. Quinoa is also an excellent source of magnesium, with 118 mg per cup, cooked.

According to the USDA nutrient database, 1 cup of cooked quinoa provides:

  • 39.41 g carbohydrates
  • 31 mg calcium
  • 2.76 mg iron
  • 318 mg potassium
  • 13 mg sodium
  • 2.02 mg zinc


Never cooked with quinoa before and wondering how to prepare this healthy gluten-free whole grain? Wondering where you can find some at the grocery store? Find out the answers to all these questions and more with this introduction to quinoa. Everything you need to know, including healthy vegetarian quinoa recipes.