10 Foods That Are High in Niacin

10 Foods That Are High in Niacin

Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, is an essential nutrient that plays a vital role in many bodily functions. A niacin-rich diet can help maintain healthy skin, support brain function, and lower cholesterol levels. In this article, we’ll explore 10 foods that are high in niacin, which you can easily incorporate into your daily diet.

The Importance of Niacin in Your Diet

Niacin is a water-soluble vitamin that assists in the conversion of food to energy. It’s also crucial for DNA repair and stress response. The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for niacin varies by age and gender, but generally, adults should aim for about 14-16 milligrams per day.

1. Turkey

White meat turkey is not only a lean source of protein but also a great source of niacin. A 3-ounce serving of roasted turkey breast contains nearly 60% of the RDA for niacin.

2. Chicken Breast

Chicken breast, another protein powerhouse, is also rich in niacin. A cooked, skinless chicken breast provides about 70% of your daily niacin needs.

3. Peanuts

For vegetarians and those looking for a plant-based source of niacin, peanuts are an excellent choice. A quarter-cup serving of peanuts offers about a quarter of the RDA for niacin.

4. Mushrooms

Certain types of mushrooms, particularly portobello and shiitake, are high in niacin. Just one cup of grilled portobello mushrooms contains nearly 20% of the RDA.

5. Green Peas

Green peas are not only a good source of plant-based protein but also have a decent amount of niacin. One cup of cooked green peas has about 3 milligrams of niacin.

6. Tuna

Tuna, especially yellowfin, is rich in niacin. A 3-ounce serving of cooked yellowfin tuna can provide over 100% of the RDA for niacin.

7. Avocado

Avocados are not just about healthy fats; they also provide essential vitamins including niacin. One whole avocado contains about 3.5 milligrams of niacin.

8. Brown Rice

Whole grains like brown rice are good sources of niacin. One cup of cooked brown rice offers about 5 milligrams, which is around a third of the RDA.

9. Beef Liver

Beef liver is packed with nutrients, including niacin. A 3-ounce serving of beef liver can give you up to 75% of the RDA for niacin.

10. Anchovies

Small but mighty, anchovies are extremely high in niacin. Just two ounces of anchovies can provide nearly 50% of the niacin RDA.


What is the recommended daily allowance of niacin?

Adults should aim for about 14-16 milligrams of niacin per day, though this can vary based on individual needs and health conditions.

Can you get enough niacin from food alone?

Yes, a balanced diet including niacin-rich foods like those listed can provide sufficient amounts of this essential nutrient.

Are there any risks associated with consuming too much niacin?

Excessive intake of niacin can lead to ‘niacin flush’, a temporary redness of the skin, as well as more serious health issues if consumed in very high doses over time.

Is niacin important for vegetarians and vegans?

Absolutely. Vegetarians and vegans should pay attention to their niacin intake, incorporating plant-based sources like peanuts and mushrooms into their diet.

How does cooking affect the niacin content in foods?

While some water-soluble vitamins can be lost during cooking, niacin is fairly stable when subjected to heat. However, cooking methods that involve water may cause some niacin to leach out.