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The 29 Best Foods High in Vitamin D

Vitamin D is an essential vitamin required by the body for the absorption of calcium, bone development, immune functioning, and alleviation of inflammation.

Vitamin D deficiency can lead to rickets, a weakened immune system, increased cancer risk, poor hair growth, and osteomalacia. Excess vitamin D can cause the body to absorb too much calcium, leading to increased risk of heart disease and kidney stones.

The current U.S. Daily Value for vitamin D is 600 IU (international units) and the toxicity threshold is thought to be 10,000 to 40,000 IU/day.2

Sometimes vitamin D values are given in micrograms (mcg,μg), when this is the case remember that 1μg=40IU for Vitamin D.

Vitamin D is oil soluble, which means you need to eat fat to absorb it. Foods high in vitamin D include mushrooms exposed to sunlight, fish, ham, pork chops, chicken, fortified milk, cheese, fortified soy milk, fortified orange juice, and fortified breakfast cereals.

Vitamin D is also naturally made by your body when you expose your skin to the sun and is called the sunshine vitamin. In addition, vitamin D is widely added to many foods such as milk and orange juice, and can also simply be consumed as a supplement.

Below is a list of 29 vitamin D rich foods, for more see the list of foods rich in vitamin D2 (Ergocalciferol) and foods rich in vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol).


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Capsules of Cod Liver Oil

1. Cod Liver Oil - 1360 IU (227% DV) in 1 tbsp (14g)

450 IU (75% DV) in 1 tsp (5g)
10000 IU (1667% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A portobello mushroom

2. Portabella Mushrooms (Exposed to Sunlight) - 977 IU (163% DV) in 1 cup diced (86g)

954 IU (159% DV) in 1 piece whole (84g)
1136 IU (189% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Brown Crimini Mushrooms

3. Brown or Crimini Mushrooms (Exposed to Sunlight) - 919 IU (153% DV) in 1 cup sliced (72g)

255 IU (43% DV) in 1 piece whole (20g)
1276 IU (213% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A pile of button mushrooms

4. White Button Mushrooms (Exposed to Sunlight) - 734 IU (123% DV) in 1 cup pieces or slices (70g)

241 IU (40% DV) in 1 large (23g)
1048 IU (175% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Trout Fish

5. Trout - 646 IU (108% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

540 IU (90% DV) in 1 fillet (71g)
760 IU (127% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Salmon Fillets

6. Salmon - 568 IU (94% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

1035 IU (172% DV) in 1/2 fillet (155g)
668 IU (111% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Tuna fish from a can

7. Canned Tuna - 458 IU (77% DV) in 1 can (171g)

391 IU (66% DV) in 1 cup, solid or chunks (146g)
268 IU (45% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Mackerel Fillet

8. Mackerel - 388 IU (65% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

803 IU (134% DV) in 1 fillet (176g)
456 IU (76% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A round of queso fresco

9. Fortified Queso Fresco* - 132 IU (22% DV) in 1 cup, crumbled (122g)

108 IU (18% DV) in 100 grams
Queso Fresco is a soft fresh cheese. Sometimes made by removing even more whey from cottage cheese.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Slices of ham

10. Lean Ham - 129 IU (21% DV) in 1 cup (140g)

26 IU (4% DV) in 1 oz (28g)
92 IU (15% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A glass of milk

11. Fortified Milk* - 127 IU (21% DV) in 1 cup (244g)

508 IU (88% DV) in 1 quart (976g)
52 IU (9% DV) in 100 grams
Fortified foods have vitamin D added to them and the level of vitamin D may vary. Check nutrient labels for exact amounts of vitamin D.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Some plain yogurt with fruit

12. Fortified Soy Yogurt* - 127 IU (21% DV) in 1 cup (8 fl oz) (245g)

118 IU (20% DV) in 1 container (227g)
52 IU (9% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A bowl of fruit yogurt

13. Fortified Yogurt (Low-Fat)* - 127 IU (21% DV) in 1 cup (8 fl oz) (245g)

88 IU (15% DV) in 1 container (6 oz) (170g)
52 IU (9% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A block of fresh tofu

14. Fortified Tofu* - 123 IU (21% DV) in 1/5 package (79g)

142 IU (24% DV) in 1 container (91g)
156 IU (26% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Drops of Soymilk

15. Fortified Soymilk* - 117 IU (19% DV) in 1 cup (243g)

48 IU (8% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Almonds with milk infront of them

16. Fortified Almond Milk* - 105 IU (18% DV) in 1 cup (262g)

40 IU (7% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Cereal flakes

17. Fortified Cereals* - 100 IU (17% DV) in 3/4 cup (1 NLEA serving) (30g)

332 IU (55% DV) in 100 grams
See the full ranking of 155 Cereals High in Vitamin D.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A glass of orange juice with two oranges

18. Fortified Orange Juice* - 100 IU (17% DV) in 1 cup (249g)

40 IU (7% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A pork chop

19. Pork Chops - 82 IU (14% DV) in 1 chop (206g)

34 IU (6% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
40 IU (7% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Salmon eggs

20. Fish Roe (or Caviar) - 68 IU (11% DV) in 1 tbsp (14g)

137 IU (23% DV) in 1 oz (28g)
484 IU (81% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A can with sardines inside

21. Canned Sardines - 46 IU (8% DV) in 2 sardines (24g)

55 IU (9% DV) in 1 oz (28g)
192 IU (32% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Eggs stacked on top of each other

22. Eggs - 44 IU (8% DV) in 1 large (50g)

120 IU (20% DV) in 1 cup (136g)
88 IU (15% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A cod fillet

23. Cod Fish - 41 IU (7% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

86 IU (14% DV) in 1 fillet (180g)
48 IU (8% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Shiitake Mushrooms

24. Shiitake Mushrooms - 41 IU (7% DV) in 1 cup pieces (145g)

20 IU (4% DV) in 4 mushrooms (72g)
28 IU (5% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A roast chicken

25. Chicken - 15 IU (3% DV) in 1 thigh with skin (129g)

12 IU (2% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A beef roast

26. Lean Beef Roast - 14 IU (3% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

38 IU (7% DV) in 1 roast (235g)
16 IU (3% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


A block of cheddar cheese

27. Cheddar Cheese - 11 IU (2% DV) in 1 slice (1 oz) (28g)

40 IU (7% DV) in 100 grams

Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Turkey Breast

28. Turkey - 10 IU (2% DV) in 3 oz (85g)

457 IU (76% DV) in 1 bird (3812g)
12 IU (2% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.


Slices of Colby Cheese

29. Colby Cheese - 7 IU (1% DV) in 1 slice (1 oz) (28g)

32 IU (5% DV) in 1 cup, diced (132g)
24 IU (4% DV) in 100 grams
Click to see complete nutrition facts.

*Fortified foods have vitamin D added to them and the level of vitamin D may vary. Check nutrient labels for exact amounts of vitamin D.

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Infographic high vitamin D foods including cod liver oil, mushrooms, fish, fortified dairy, pork, fortified soy products, fortified cereals, fortified orange juice, eggs, chicken, and turkey.
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How Much Vitamin D Do You Need?

The Daily Value (%DV) for Vitamin D is 600 IU (international units) and the toxicity threshold is thought to be 10,000 to 40,000 IU/day. Children less than 1 year old are recommended to consume 400IU a day. All adults between 1 to 70 years old should consume 600IU. Adults over 70 years old should consume 800IU. Below is a table of the RDAs by age and gender:

Age Male Female Pregnancy Lactation
0-12 months*400 IU
(10 mcg)
400 IU
(10 mcg)
1-13 years600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
14-18 years600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
19-50 years600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
51-70 years600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
>70 years800 IU
(20 mcg)
800 IU
(20 mcg)

* Adequate Intake (AI)

Source: Office of Dietary Supplements

Health Benefits of Vitamin D

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  • Breastfed Infants Who are Not in the Sun - The amount of vitamin D in breast milk depends on the amount of vitamin D in the mother. However, breast-milk typically does not contain adequate amounts of vitamin D. Be sure infants get at least some exposure to the sun (at least 10-20 minutes) to ensure adequate levels of vitamin D.8
  • Older Adults - As skin ages it is less and less able to make vitamin D from the sun, so vitamin D has to be attained from foods or supplements.5
  • People With Little Sun Exposure on the Skin - Wearing sunscreen, or lots of clothing, hampers the creation of vitamin D from the sun.9,10
  • People with Darker Skin - Melanin, a pigment found in skin, reduces the body's ability to manufacture vitamin D from the sun.5
  • People who have Problems Absorbing Fat, or are on Extreme Low Fat Diets - Vitamin D is fat soluble, which means it is found in fats, and your body has to be able to digest fats in order for you to absorb the vitamin D.11
  • People Who are Obese, or People Who have Had Gastric Bypass Surgery - Excess fat in the body absorbs vitamin D, effectively reducing the amount available for body functions. Those who have undergone bypass surgery are missing part of their upper intestine which hampers Vitamin D absorption.5,13,14
  • People Taking Certain Medications
    • Steroid Corticosteroid medications used to alleviate inflammation can reduce calcium absorption and impair vitamin D metabolism.15-17
    • Weight-loss drugs with orlistat (brand names Xenical® and alliTM) and cholesterol-lowering drugs cholestyramine (brand names Questran®, LoCholest®, and Prevalite®) can reduce the absorption of vitamin D and other fat-soluble vitamins.18,19
    • Medicines used to control and stabalize epileptic seizures, particularly phenobarbital and phenytoin (brand name Dilantin®) interferes with Vitamin D and reduces Calcium absorption.20

Vegetables high in vitamin D include mushrooms which have been exposed to sunlight. Other vegan foods high in vitamin D include fortified soy products like tofu, soymilk, and soy yogurt, fortified cereals, and fortified juices.

Unfortunately, no fruits are high in vitamin D, and fortified orange juice is currently the only fruit product commonly sold with vitamin D.

Here is a list of fish and the amount of vitamin D they provide per 3 ounce (about the size of your hand) serving: Smoked Salmon (97% DV), Swordfish (94% DV), Canned Trout (86% DV), Salmon (75% DV), Smoked White Fish (73% DV), Mackerel (65% DV), Canned Mackerel (43% DV), Tuna Canned in Oil (38% DV), Halibut (33% DV), Herring (30% DV), Sardines (27% DV), Rockfish (26% DV), Tilapia (21% DV), Sole (20% DV), Flounder (20% DV), and Tuna Steak (12% DV).

Mushrooms which have been set out in the sunshine (or even just outside on a cloudy day) for 20-30 minutes have much more vitamin D. Here is a list of mushrooms high in vitamin D per cup: Portobellos Exposed to Sun (163% DV), Criminis Exposed to Sun (153% DV), White Button Mushrooms Exposed to Sun (123% DV), Maitake (131% DV), Morels (23% DV), Chanterelle (19% DV), Shiitakes (7% DV), and Oyster (4% DV).

  1. Maitake Mushrooms
  2. 787 IU (131% DV) in 1 cup diced (70g)
    12 IU (2% DV) in 1 piece whole (1g)
    1124 IU (187% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  3. Portabella (Exposed to Sunlight)
  4. 634 IU (105% DV) in 1 cup sliced (121g)
    451 IU (75% DV) in 1 piece whole (86g)
    524 IU (87% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  5. Chanterelle Mushrooms
  6. 114 IU (19% DV) in 1 cup (54g)
    11 IU (2% DV) in 1 piece (5g)
    212 IU (35% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  7. Morel Mushrooms
  8. 135 IU (22% DV) in 1 cup (66g)
    26 IU (4% DV) in 1 piece (13g)
    204 IU (34% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  9. Shiitake Mushrooms
  10. 41 IU (7% DV) in 1 cup pieces (145g)
    20 IU (4% DV) in 4 mushrooms (72g)
    28 IU (5% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  11. Fortified Soymilk
  12. 117 IU (19% DV) in 1 cup (243g)
    117 IU (19% DV) in 1 cup (243g)
    48 IU (8% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  13. Rice Milk
  14. 96 IU (17% DV) in 8 fl oz (approximate weight, 1 serving) (240g)
    40 IU (7% DV) in 1 fl oz (100g)
    40 IU (7% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  15. Oyster Mushrooms
  16. 24 IU (4% DV) in 1 cup sliced (86g)
    4 IU (1% DV) in 1 small (15g)
    28 IU (5% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  17. Canned Cream of Mushroom Soup
  18. 10 IU (1% DV) in 1/2 cup condensed (129g)
    8 IU (1% DV) in 1 small (100g)
    8 IU (1% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  1. Halibut
  2. 932 IU (156% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    2236 IU (373% DV) in 1/2 fillet (204g)
    1096 IU (183% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  3. Salted Mackerel
  4. 806 IU (134% DV) in 1 piece (5-1/2" x 1-1/2" x 1/2") (80g)
    171 IU (29% DV) in 1 cubic inch, boneless (17g)
    1008 IU (168% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  5. Eel
  6. 792 IU (132% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    1901 IU (316% DV) in 1 fillet (204g)
    932 IU (155% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  7. Canned Salmon
  8. 731 IU (122% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    2124 IU (353% DV) in 1 can drained solids, bone and skin removed (247g)
    860 IU (143% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  9. Trout
  10. 646 IU (108% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    540 IU (90% DV) in 1 fillet (71g)
    760 IU (127% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  11. Smoked Salmon
  12. 581 IU (97% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    194 IU (32% DV) in 1 oz, boneless (28g)
    684 IU (114% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  13. Egg Yolk
  14. 525 IU (87% DV) in 1 cup (243g)
    37 IU (6% DV) in 1 large (17g)
    216 IU (36% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  15. Queso Fresco
  16. 132 IU (22% DV) in 1 cup, crumbled (122g)
    108 IU (18% DV) in 1 large (100g)
    108 IU (18% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  17. Cereals ready-to-eat GENERAL MILLS Whole Grain TOTAL
  18. 100 IU (17% DV) in 3/4 cup (1 NLEA serving) (30g)
    110 IU (18% DV) in 1 large (33g)
    332 IU (55% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  19. Pork Ribs
  20. 88 IU (14% DV) in 3 oz (85g)
    184 IU (30% DV) in 1 piece, cooked, excluding refuse (yield from 1 lb raw meat with refuse) (177g)
    104 IU (17% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  21. American Cheese
  22. 85 IU (14% DV) in 1 oz (28g)
    63 IU (11% DV) in 1 slice (3/4 oz) (21g)
    300 IU (50% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  23. Fish Roe
  24. 33 IU (5% DV) in 1 oz (28g)
    19 IU (3% DV) in 1 tbsp (16g)
    116 IU (19% DV) in 100 grams
    Click to see complete nutrition facts.


  • Consuming too much vitmain D from food or supplements can lead to anorexia, weight loss, polyuria, heart arrhythmias, kidney stones, and increased risk of heart attacks.5 Vitamin D cannot reach toxic levels if created naturally from sun exposure.21
  • Oysters, Whole Milk, Salami, Cheese, Caviar, and Eggs are high cholesterol foods which should be eaten in moderate amounts and avoided by people at risk of heart disease or stroke.

  1. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 28.
  2. Office of Dietary Supplements - Vitamin D
  3. Heaney RP. Long-latency deficiency disease: insights from calcium and vitamin D. Am J Clin Nutr 2003;78:912-9.
  4. LeBoff MS, Kohlmeier L, Hurwitz S, Franklin J, Wright J, Glowacki J. Occult vitamin D deficiency in postmenopausal US women with acute hip fracture. JAMA 1999;251:1505-11.
  5. Institute of Medicine, Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D. Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 2010.
  6. Davis CD. Vitamin D and cancer: current dilemmas and future research needs. Am J Clin Nutr 2008;88:565S-9S.
  7. Davis CD, Hartmuller V, Freedman M, Hartge P, Picciano MF, Swanson CA, Milner JA. Vitamin D and cancer: current dilemmas and future needs. Nutr Rev 2007;65:S71-S74.
  8. Wagner CL, Greer FR; American Academy of Pediatrics Section on Breastfeeding; American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Nutrition. Prevention of rickets and vitamin D deficiency in infants, children, and adolescents. Pediatrics 2008;122:1142-1152.
  9. Webb AR, Kline L, Holick MF. Influence of season and latitude on the cutaneous synthesis of vitamin D3: Exposure to winter sunlight in Boston and Edmonton will not promote vitamin D3 synthesis in human skin. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 1988;67:373-8.
  10. Webb AR, Pilbeam C, Hanafin N, Holick MF. An evaluation of the relative contributions of exposure to sunlight and of diet to the circulating concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in an elderly nursing home population in Boston. Am J Clin Nutr 1990;51:1075-81.
  11. Lo CW, Paris PW, Clemens TL, Nolan J, Holick MF. Vitamin D absorption in healthy subjects and in patients with intestinal malabsorption syndromes. Am J Clin Nutr 1985;42:644-49.
  12. Malone M. Recommended nutritional supplements for bariatric surgery patients. Ann Pharmacother 2008;42:1851-8.
  13. Compher CW, Badellino KO, Boullata JI. Vitamin D and the bariatric surgical patient: a review. Obes Surg 2008;18:220-4.
  14. Buckley LM, Leib ES, Cartularo KS, Vacek PM, Cooper SM. Calcium and vitamin D3 supplementation prevents bone loss in the spine secondary to low-dose corticosteroids in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Ann Intern Med 1996;125:961-8.
  15. Lukert BP, Raisz LG. Glucocorticoid-induced osteoporosis: pathogenesis and management. Ann Intern Med 1990;112:352-64.
  16. de Sevaux RGL, Hoitsma AJ, Corstens FHM, Wetzels JFM. Treatment with vitamin D and calcium reduces bone loss after renal transplantation: a randomized study. J Am Soc Nephrol 2002;13:1608-14.
  17. McDuffie JR, Calis KA, Booth SL, Uwaifo GI, Yanovski JA. Effects of orlistat on fat-soluble vitamins in obese adolescents. Pharmacotherapy 2002;22:814-22.
  18. Compston JE, Horton LW. Oral 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 in treatment of osteomalacia associated with ileal resection and cholestyramine therapy. Gastroenterology 1978;74:900-2.
  19. Gough H, Goggin T, Bissessar A, Baker M, Crowley M, Callaghan N. A comparative study of the relative influence of different anticonvulsant drugs, UV exposure and diet on vitamin D and calcium metabolism in outpatients with epilepsy. Q J Med 1986;59:569-77.
  20. Jones G. Pharmacokinetics of vitamin D toxicity. Am J Clin Nutr 2008;88:582S-6S.
  21. J. A. Ko, B. H. Lee, J. S. Lee and H. J. Park. Effect of UV-B Exposure on the Concentration of Vitamin D2 in Sliced Shiitake Mushroom (Lentinus edodes) and White Button Mushroom (Agaricus bisporus). J. Agric. Food Chem., 2008, 56 (10), pp 3671-3674 DOI: 10.1021/jf073398s

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