Top 10 Foods Highest in Beta Carotene

Written by Daisy Whitbread, MScN
Beta Carotene is a carotenoid compound responsible for giving fruits and vegetables their orange pigment. A powerful antioxidant, beta carotene has been found to help protect against cancer and aging (however beta-carotene supplements can increase lung cancer risk for smokers). Beta-carotene is a fat soluble vitamin, so eating the following foods with a fat like olive oil or nuts can help absorption. Below is a list high beta carotene foods, click here for high beta carotene foods by nutrient density, and here for an extended list of beta carotene rich foods

#1: Sweet Potato (Baked)
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup (200g)Per medium potato (114g)
11509μg 23018μg 13120μg
An average sweet potato contains only 103 calories and 0.2 grams of fat.
More info on Sweet Potatoes.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#2: Carrots
Beta-carotene in 100g Per 1/2 cup, slices (78g)Per carrot (46g)
8332μg 6499μg 3833μg
Half a cup of sliced carrots contains only 27 calories and 0.1 grams of fat.Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#3: Dark Green Leafy Vegetables (Spinach)
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup (180g)Per 1/2 cup (90g)
6288μg 11318μg 5659μg
Other Dark Green Leafy Vegetables High in Beta-carotene (amount per cup, cooked): Kale (10625μg), Mustard Greens (10360μg), Collard Greens (8575μg), Beet Greens (6610μg), Turnip Greens (6588μg), Swiss Chard (6391μg), and Pak Choi (4333μg). Raw dark leafy greens are also great sources of beta-carotene.Click to see complete nutrition facts.



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#4: Cos or Romaine Lettuce
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup, shredded (47g)Per head (626g)
5226μg 2456μg 32714μg
Other Types of Lettuce High in Beta-carotene (amount per cup, shredded): Green Leaf (1599μg), Red Leaf (1259μg), Butterhead (1093μg), and Chicory (995μg). Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#5: Squash (Butternut)
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup cubes (205g)
4570μg 9369μg
Other Types of Squash High in Beta-carotene (amount per cup, cooked): Hubbard Squash, cubed (7339μg), and Pumpkin, mashed (5135μg). Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#6: Cantaloupe Melon
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup, balls (177g)Per wedge (69g)
2020μg 3575μg 1394μg
An average wedge of cantaloupe melon contains only 23 calories and 0.1 grams of fat. Click to see complete nutrition facts.



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#7: Sweet Red Peppers
Beta-carotene in 100g 1 cup chopped (149g)1 large (164g)
1624μg 2420μg 2663μg
A large sweet green pepper contains 341μg and a large sweet yellow pepper contains 223μg. Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#8: Dried Apricots
Beta-carotene in 100g Per cup (130g)Per half (4g)
2163μg 2812μg 87μg
Other Dried Fruit High in Beta-carotene (amount per cup): Dried Peaches (1718μg) and Prunes (685μg). Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#9: Peas (Cooked)
Beta-carotene in 100g Per 1/2 cup (80g)Per package (253g)
1250μg 1000μg 3163μg
Half a cup of peas contains only 62 calories and 0.2 grams of fat. Click to see complete nutrition facts.



#10: Broccoli (Cooked)
Beta-carotene in 100g Per 1/2 cup chopped (78g)Per stalk (180g)
929μg 725μg 1672μg
Half a cup of cooked broccoli contains only 27 calories and 0.3 grams of fat. Raw broccoli is also a great source of beta-carotene.Click to see complete nutrition facts.



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Click each heading below for more information from HealthAliciousNess.com

#1: Spices (Paprika, Cayenne, Chili) 26162μg per 100 grams523μg per teaspoon (2 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Spices
#2: Sweet Potato (Baked) 11509μg per 100 grams23018μg per cup, cubes (200 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Sweet Potato
#3: Kale (Frozen, Cooked) 8823μg per 100 grams11470μg per cup, chopped (130 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Kale
#4: Carrots (Cooked) 8332μg per 100 grams3833μg per carrot (46 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Carrots
#5: Cos or Romaine Lettuce 5226μg per 100 grams2456μg per cup, shredded (47 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Cos or Romaine Lettuce
#6: Parsley 5054μg per 100 grams202μg per tablespoon (4 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Parsley
#7: Dried Herbs (Marjoram, Sage, Coriander) 4806μg per 100 grams48μg per teaspoon (1 gram)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Dried Herbs
#8: Butternut Squash (Cooked) 4570μg per 100 grams9369μg per cup, cubes (205 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Butternut Squash
#9: Garden Cress 4150μg per 100 grams2075μg per cup (50 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Garden Cress
#10: Cilantro (Coriander) 3930μg per 100 grams157μg per 1/4 cup (4 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Cilantro


Sun Dried Chili Peppers14844μg per 100 gram serving5492μg per cup (37 grams)148μg per pepper (1 gram)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Sun Dried Chili Peppers
Sweet Potato Chips14205μg per 100 gram serving3977μg per bag (28 grams)4830μg per package (34 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Sweet Potato Chips
Carrot Juice9303μg per 100 gram serving21955μg per cup (236 grams)2791μg per fluid ounce (30 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Carrot Juice
Basil3142μg per 100 gram serving157μg per 2 tablespoons, chopped (5 grams)189μg per 1/4 cup, leaves (6 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Basil
Cime di Rapa (Broccoli Raab, Cooked)2720μg per 100 gram serving2312μg per serving (85 grams)11886μg per bunch (437 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Cime di Rapa
Chives2612μg per 100 gram serving78μg per tablespoon, chopped (3 grams)26μg per teaspoon, chopped (1 gram)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Chives
Passion Fruit743μg per 100 gram serving1753μg per cup (236 grams)134μg per fruit (18 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Passion Fruit
Zucchini670μg per 100 gram serving1206μg per cup, sliced (180 grams)804μg per 1/2 cup, mashed (120 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Zucchini
Mangoes640μg per 100 gram serving1056μg per cup, pieces (165 grams)2150μg per mango (336 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Mangoes
Asparagus (Cooked)604μg per 100 gram serving544μg per 1/2 cup (90 grams)362μg per 4 spears (60 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Asparagus
Watercress1914μg per 100 gram serving651μg per cup, chopped (34 grams)479μg per 10 sprigs (25 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Watercress
Canned Pumpkin6940μg per 100 gram serving17003μg per cup (245 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Canned Pumpkin
Mixed Vegetables (Canned)5670μg per 100 gram serving9242μg per cup (163 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Mixed Vegetables
Leeks1000μg per 100 gram serving890μg per leek (89 grams)Click to see complete nutrition facts for Leeks
For more foods high in beta carotene use the nutrient ranking tool.

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Data Sources and References

    • USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 26.