Vegan Sources of Selenium

Gaining an awareness of vegan sources of selenium can help you get the nutrients you need on a plant-based diet. Here’s a look at some selenium-rich vegan foods to help you up your intake of this important mineral.

Nutritious Vegan Selenium Sources

Selenium is a trace element that plays a crucial role in various bodily functions. It acts as an antioxidant, supporting the immune system and helping regulate thyroid function. While it’s only needed in small amounts, ensuring an adequate intake of selenium is important for overall nutrition. Here’s a list of nutrient-dense (and tasty!) vegan selenium sources:

1. Brazil Nuts

Selenium-rich brazil nuts on a white plate.
Brazil Nuts

Brazil nuts are an excellent vegan source of selenium. Just one to two nuts is usually enough to meet the recommended daily intake of selenium, so it’s essential to consume them in moderation to avoid toxicity due to their high selenium content.

Brazil Nuts Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, Brazil nuts contain 1917 mcg (micrograms) of selenium per 100g (but don’t eat 100g at a time or you will far exceed the recommended daily intake).

2. Sunflower Seeds

Sunflower seeds are a nutritious plant-based source of selenium. Enjoy them as a snack on their own, sprinkle them over salads, or blend them into smoothies for a tasty and convenient way to incorporate this selenium-rich food into your vegan diet.

Sunflower Seeds Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, contain 53 mcg of selenium per 100g.

3. Cashews

Selenium-rich cashews on a white plate.
Cashews

Cashews are one of my favorite vegan sources of selenium. I love their rich, buttery texture. You can easily incorporate cashews into your diet by enjoying them as a snack, adding them to salads for a crunchy texture, or blending them into creamy sauces or vegan cheeses.

Cashews Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, raw cashews contain 19.9 mcg of selenium per 100g.

4. Whole Wheat Pasta

Whole wheat pasta is a great vegan source of selenium. I like to pair it with flavorful plant-based sauces and vegetables. You can experiment with different herbs and spices to enhance the taste.

Whole Wheat Pasta Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, cooked whole wheat pasta contains 36.3 mcg of selenium per 100g.

5. Chia Seeds

In addition to containing selenium, chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, and antioxidants. They’re easy to incorporate into all sorts of dishes such as puddings and smoothies.

Chia Seeds Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, chia seeds contain 55.2 mcg of selenium per 100g.

6. Mushrooms

Because of their meaty texture and earthy flavor, mushrooms are one of my favorite vegan sources of selenium. I like to add them to plant-based pasta dishes or enjoy them grilled as a side. They’re a flavorful and nutrient-rich option for boosting selenium intake while following a vegan diet.

Mushrooms Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, raw white mushrooms contain 9.3 mcg of selenium per 100g.

7. Oats

Oats are another excellent vegan source of selenium. To incorporate them into your diet, try a hearty bowl of oatmeal topped with nuts and seeds, or use oats in plant-based baking recipes like cookies and granola bars.

Oats Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, rolled oats contain 25.4 mcg of selenium per 100g.

8. Brown Rice

Brown rice is another vegan-friendly source of selenium. Pair it with roasted vegetables, using it as a base for grain bowls, or enjoying it alongside plant-based protein sources like tofu or beans.

Brown Rice Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, cooked brown rice contains 5.8 mcg of selenium per 100g.

9. Peanut Butter

Peanut butter, another of my favorite vegan sources of selenium, can be easily incorporated into your diet. Spread it on whole-grain toast, add it to smoothies, or use it as a flavorful dip for fruits and vegetables.

Peanut Butter Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, peanut butter contains 4.1 mcg of selenium per 100g.

10. Chickpeas

Chickpeas are another nutritious vegan source of selenium. Try tossing them in salads, making homemade hummus, or incorporating them into plant-based stews and curries.

Chickpeas Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, cooked chickpeas contain 3.7 mcg of selenium per 100g.

11. Almonds

Selenium-rich almonds on a white plate.
Almonds

Almonds are another selenium-rich vegan food. Include them in your diet by snacking on raw almonds, adding sliced almonds to oatmeal or salads, or using almond butter in smoothies and spreads.

Almonds Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, almonds contain 4.1 mcg of selenium per 100g.

12. Quinoa

Quinoa is a nutrient-dense vegan-friendly source of selenium. Try using quinoa as a base for salads, mixing it into plant-based stir-fries, or enjoying it as a side dish with roasted vegetables.

Quinoa Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, cooked quinoa contains 2.8 mcg of selenium per 100g.

13. Tofu

Crispy pieces of tofu in a white bowl.
Tofu

Tofu is one of my go-to vegan sources of selenium. I like to grill, bake, or sautée tofu and add it to stir-fries, salads, or wraps. It’s also loaded with plant-based protein, which is a nice bonus.

Tofu Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, firm tofu contains 9.9 mcg of selenium per 100g.

14. Broccoli

Broccoli, while not as high in selenium as some of the other foods on this list, can contribute to your overall selenium intake. Try steaming or roasting broccoli as a nutritious side dish, adding it to stir-fries, or tossing it in salads.

Broccoli Selenium Content

According to the USDA National Nutrient Database, cooked fresh broccoli contains 2.6 mcg of selenium per 100g.

Vegan Selenium-Rich Recipes to Try

1. Vegan Chocolate Cashew Cheesecake

A slice of vegan cashew cheesecake with three cherries on top.
Vegan Chocolate Cashew Cheesecake

This mouthwatering vegan cheesecake gets its creamy consistency from selenium-rich cashews. Vegan Chocolate Cashew Cheesecake Recipe

2. Vegan Coconut Flour Peanut Butter Cookies

Five coconut flour peanut butter cookies on a white plate with a bite taken out of one.
Vegan Coconut Flour Peanut Butter Cookies

These vegan coconut flour peanut butter cookies are quick and easy to make. Vegan Coconut Flour Peanut Butter Cookies Recipe

3. Almond Butter Chocolate Truffles

Eight almond butter chocolates on a white plate.
Almond Butter Chocolate Truffles

These vegan chocolate truffles are made with selenium-rich almond butter. Almond Butter Chocolate Truffles Recipe

4. Maple Cinnamon Overnight Oats

A bowl of maple cinnamon overnight oats with chopped apples on top.
Maple Cinnamon Overnight Oats

These selenium-rich, maple cinnamon overnight oats are quick and easy to make. Maple Cinnamon Overnight Oats Recipe

Wrapping Up: Vegan Selenium Sources

Getting enough selenium on a plant-based diet just takes a bit of strategy. Incorporating some of these vegan sources of selenium into your diet may help you boost your intake of this essential element. So add some of these yummy foods to your grocery list and enjoy!

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