Top 10 Reasons to Eat Teff



What’s The Buzz With Teff?

If you haven’t noticed, I use teff flour in my gluten free baking a lot and here’s why.

1. Teff has a delicious flavor, slightly sweet and nutty.  It is also known as “lovegrass”- whats not to love about that?Teff

2. Teff flour packs a powerful punch, it has a higher nutritional value than whole wheat flour.

According to Tamara Duker Fruman:

“While both have about the same amount of protein (4g) and fiber (4g) per 1/4 cup, Teff is also a good source of iron and a not-too-shabby source of calcium as well. That same 1/4 cup serving of teff flour contains 13% of the Daily Value for iron (versus about 6% for whole wheat flour) and 5% of the Daily Value for Calcium (versus 1% for whole wheat flour.) This makes teff flour an especially good food to incorporate into the diets of toddlers, children, teenage girls and adult women; all groups that tend not to meet the recommended intakes for iron and/or calcium on average.”

3. Teff serves as a complete source of protein, which is an uncommon finding amongst plant foods.  You may be familiar with quinoa and soybeans falling into this category as well.

4. The source of iron in teff is more easily absorbed due to its bioavailability.

5. Teff is light brown in color and lends a beautiful color to baked goods.

6. Teff is GLUTEN FREE!  In the world of nutritionally devoid flours we typically see in prepared baked goods, teff is a welcome relief.

7. Teff is a staple grain in both Ethiopia and Eritrea contributing 2/3 of the protein in their diet, they have been eating teff for about 5,000 years.

8. Teff is now readily available around the globe.

According t0 The National Academies Press:

“Tef is so overwhelmingly important in Ethiopia that its absence elsewhere is a mystery. The plant can certainly be grown in many countries. Now, however, the use of tef as a cereal for humans is transcending the boundaries of Ethiopia. Commercial production has begun in both the United States and South Africa, and international markets are opening up.”

9. You are what you eat right?  We know about all of the drama surrounding wheat in America.  If you are unaware of the unhealthful aspects of the wheat we are eating today read She Sugar’s article: “Dwarf Wheat, Another Arrow in the Backs of Americans”.

10. Teff is a high resistant starch.

According to the Whole Grains Council:

Teff , has “a newly-discovered type of dietary fiber that can benefit blood-sugar management, weight control, and colon health. It’s estimated that 20-40% of the carbohydrates in teff are resistant starches. A gluten-free grain with a mild flavor, teff is a healthy and versatile ingredient for many gluten-free products.”

  • Just one pound of teff grains can grow an acre of teff, while 100 pounds or more of wheat grains are needed to grow an acre of wheat.
  • Teff requires only 36 hours to sprout, the shortest time of any grain.
  • Three thousand grains of teff weigh just one gram (1/28 of an ounce).
  • It’s size is less than 1mm, similar to a poppy seed and a handful of teff is enough to sow a typical field.



  1. Petros T. says:

    Same place where Teff is grown, Priests also use holy water from the springs near the Teff farm to cure diabetes and high blood pressure problems for believers.

  2. Rrrami says:

    I love teff, but let’s correct some misinformation. ALL plants have complete proteins: they all contain ALL essential amino acids. Teff is a decent source of protein: half a cup is about 350 Cal (~17-18% of the RDI) and supplies ~12.5 g of protein (17-18% of the RDI for me). It is important to note that teff is very low in the essential amino acid l-lysine, more so than other grains. It is important for vegans (like myself) to remember to have a serving of legumes later in the day, as they are high in lysine.

    Teff is indeed higher in calcium than other grains. I simmer it in calcium-fortified almond milk, so my breakfast is quite calcium-rich. Iron is abundant on a vegan diet, so its high iron content was not a selling point for me. It’s great taste was, however! It combines well with cocoa powder, raisins, dates and bananas. I like to top it with berries and ground flaxseed. Give it a try. You’ll love it!

    • jewels says:

      Most plant proteins are deficient in one or more essential amino acids and therefore aren’t regarded as “complete proteins”. A varied plant based diet will provide the 9 essential amino acids – in that you’re correct. Protein combining has been largely discredited as a need for human growth and maintenance. Promoted initially in “Diet for a small planet”, the author herself changed her stance in 1981. In fact, we don’t need to eat all amino acids in the same meal or in the same day because our body is efficient in storing them.

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