Top 10 Food Containing Vitamin B12

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Nutrispeak's picture


Cobalamin, commonly known as Vitamin B12, is one of the most complex vitamins known. It can only be manufactured by bacteria, Food Containing Vitamin B12 are few, and the sources predominantly non vegetarian. It is also actively involved in regular cell functions (growth, maintenance, and reproduction), DNA synthesis and regulation, fatty acid synthesis, and energy production. Even minor B12 deficiency can cause anemia, fatigue, mania, poor memory, and depression.  Long term deficiency can result in anemia and can cause severe, permanant, and irreversable brain and nervous system damage. Large doses B12 consumed, are excreted by the body or stored in the liver (stores can last for a year) for later use.


The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of the vitamin is given in a table below.







0-6 months*

0.4 mcg

0.4 mcg



7-12 months*

0.5 mcg

0.5 mcg



1-3 years

0.9 mcg

0.9 mcg



4-8 years

1.2 mcg

1.2 mcg



9-13 years

1.8 mcg

1.8 mcg



14+ years

2.4 mcg

2.4 mcg

2.6 mcg

2.8 mcg



Foods Sources of Vitamin B12

The best sources of B12 are animal products like oysters, fish, meat, poultry, eggs, milk, and milk products. Vegan sources of B12 are very limited, they include certain strain specific yeast, fortified foods (cereals, soy milk, meat analogues, etc.), fermented foods, tempeh, miso, sea vegetables, and other plant foods. Listed below are the top 10 foods containing B12.


  1. Clams, Oysters & Mussels: Shellfish cooked and consumed in any form they are cooked. Clams (98.9μg/100g serving) are the best source, followed by mussels and oysters.

  2. Liver: Liver from any animal source is a good source of B12, as it’s the store house of the vitamin. The highest on the list are lamb (85.7μg/100g serving), beef, veal, moose, turkey, duck, and goose respectively.

  3. Caviar: A delicacy in most part of the world, this expensive food is an excellent source of Vitamin B12 providing around 56 - 25μg/100g serving depending on its origin.

  4. Octopus: An essential in Mediterranean, Japanese, and Hawaiian cuisine, cooked octopus provides 36μg/100 gram serving.

  5. Fish: Fish in general is a good source, but mackeresl provides the most vitamin B12 with 19μg/100g serving, followed by herring, salmon, tuna, cod, sardines, and blue fish

  6. Crab & lobster: Apart from being a dinners delight, crabs give us around 11.5μg/100g serving, and lobster provide 4.04μg/100g serving.

  7. Beef: The amount of B12 in beef depends on the cut, lean fat-trimmed chuck contains the most vitamin B12 (6.18μg/100g serving), followed by chuck steak, sirloin, rib-eye, and ribs. 

  8. Lamb: Lean cuts of lambs are the best sources of B12, the shoulder gives around 3.71μg/100g serving. Foreshank, leg, and lamb chops are good sources too.

  9. Cheese: The amount of vitamin B12 in cheese depends on type and variety, Swiss cheese provides the most with 3.34μg/100g serving, followed by Gjetost, Mozzarella, Parmesan, Tilsit, and Feta. 

  10. Eggs: Egg yolks are the best sources of B12  - goose, duck, and chicken give 7.34μg, 3.78μg, and 1.95μg of B12 per 100  serving.


Hemoglobin production and normal functioning of the brain and nervous system are just some of the Heath Benefits of B12. So, include as many food sources of Vitamin B12 in your diet as possible, and stay healthy!


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Anonymous's picture
Such an informative post. Thanks a lot for the research.
emilyvyomahallaway's picture
Vital vitamin Information!!!
yamini's picture
I learnt in my biology class in school that Vitamin B12 was of vital importance to us, but this blog has made things much easier for me to remember how to make sure I and my family get our daily dose of this essential vitamin. Thanks!!!
chockyfoodie's picture
Very important information about vitamin B12
Anonymous's picture
very good and concise info on sources of Vit. B12
veganfoodlover's picture
Where do Vegans get their B12 from?! No natural food sources?
barbecue's picture
great info
Gourmet.lover's picture
I have always found food experts endorsing the goodness of vitamin B12. It's glad to know that everyday dietary staples like eggs and lamb fuel body with the goodness of this vitamin
Anonymous's picture
It seems that all the non-veg items are loaded with vitamin B12.. for vegetarian people like me, only cheese is left with to serve the required amount of Vitamin B12.. is there anything else?
juliarobert's picture
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