9 Best Vitamin B12 Foods For Vegetarians To Include In Diet
Image Credit: Milk and fortified cereals, Pexels

Symptoms affecting the brain and nervous system can result from a deficiency in Vitamin B12, leading to issues such as numbness, muscle weakness, and psychological problems ranging from mild depression to confusion and dementia. B vitamins comprise 8 of the 13 vitamins the body requires, with B12 being the last discovered in 1948. This red vitamin contains cobalt, carbon, oxygen, phosphorus, and nitrogen. The bulk of B12 is found in animal-based foods, making it challenging for vegetarians and vegans to meet their body's B12 requirements from plant or dairy-based sources. To address this, fortified foods can be a good substitute for those who do not consume dairy or animal products. This article lists 9 Vitamin B12-rich foods for vegetarians to consider.

Milk and Cheese

In India, milk is a commonly available and excellent source of vitamin B12 for vegetarians. Drinking 250 ml of cow's milk can provide half of this vitamin's recommended intake. When it comes to cheese, Swiss cheese is the highest source of vitamin B12, with a serving of 50 gms containing 1.5 mcg of the vitamin.


Cottage cheese, also known as paneer, is a valuable Vitamin B12-rich food option for vegetarians in India. Consuming paneer can fulfil at least 20% of the recommended daily intake of this vitamin, with 100 gms of paneer containing approximately 0.8 grams of Vitamin B12. This quantity represents about a third of the necessary amount required by an adult, making paneer an excellent source of this vitamin.


Sliced and whole banana, Pexels

Among the variety of fruits that are high in vitamin B12, bananas are a noteworthy option. They are a rich source of this vitamin and offer several health benefits, such as reducing stress levels, regulating blood pressure, and aiding in treating constipation and ulcer-related issues. As such, bananas are a highly beneficial fruit for human consumption.

Fortified Food

In India, fortified foods, such as fortified cereals, can serve as an excellent source of Vitamin B12 for vegetarians. Fortification involves adding nutrients to food that are not naturally present in them. However, ensuring that the fortified product you select contains no harmful or unwanted additives and is rich in whole grains and fibre is crucial. By doing so, you can consume a fortified food product that is both safe and nutrient-rich.

Whey Powder

Whey powder isolate, a purified form of whey powder, is believed to contain even higher Vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 can be obtained from whey powder, with a serving of 32 gms providing approximately 8% of the recommended daily intake of this vitamin. A useful tip for vegetarians is to blend their whey powder intake with milk or yoghurt to fulfil their daily Vitamin B12 requirements.

Shiitake Mushroom

Shiitake mushrooms are a valuable Vitamin B12-rich vegetarian food option in India. However, they do not contain a significant amount of Vitamin B12. Therefore, consuming a substantial quantity of mushrooms may be necessary to meet your daily Vitamin B12 requirements. A helpful tip to achieve this is to sauté shiitake mushrooms with other Vitamin B12-rich vegetables and cottage cheese to create a nutrient-dense meal that fulfils your daily Vitamin B12 needs.


Youghurt with fruits and berries, Pexels

In India, yoghurt is a valuable source of Vitamin B12 for vegetarians. A serving of 170 gms of low-fat plain yoghurt can provide 16% of this vitamin's recommended daily intake. This makes it a relatively good source of Vitamin B12 for vegetarians. A helpful tip is to mix yoghurt with fortified cereals to adequately meet the body's Vitamin B12 requirements.


Tempeh, a fermented soybean cake, is a popular delicacy in Japanese cuisine. Like tofu, it is a Vitamin B12-rich food source often used in curries or soups.


Nori, a type of edible seaweed commonly used in Japanese cuisine with a savoury taste, is a Vitamin B12-rich vegetarian food option in India. It is readily available in the form of nori sheets. Nori can be used to make sauces, added to soups in a powdered form, or used as a sprinkle over sandwiches and salads to enhance their nutrient content.

Include these nine best sources for Vitamin B 12 rich foods for vegetarians and keep up with this nutrient's required levels.