Top 25 Highest Polyphenol Rich Foods

Ground cloves aren’t just good for flavoring spiced pumpkin cake

Often times foods are talked about in regards to their antioxidant content.

Eat this as it is full of antioxidants

Antioxidants, as a class, are very hyped in the media/health arena but the term antioxidant seems to be rather vague and nondescript as there are many different types of antixodants found in different foods, in different amounts, with different functions.

The confusion is compounded by the fact that we as scientist don’t really know the best way to measure the power of antioxidants in foods. There are all kinds of measures – Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC), Total Antioxidant Capacity (TAC), Trolox Equivalent Antioxidant Capacity (TEAC), etc.

It is just confusing.

But, thanks to a group of French scientists, things are now a little less confusing. These researchers got together in an effort to organize a large portion of this information by compiling a polyphenol database. Polyphenols are a very large class of antioxidants. You may be familiar with antioxidant buzz words like quercetin, lignins, flavonoids, and/or resveratrol. Theses are all example of subclasses or specific examples of polyphenols.

After compiling a polyphenol database containing 452 foods and 502 different types of polyphenols, the researchers ranked foods based on total amount of polyphenols per serving and published this information in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition. The fact that the researchers took the time to make the list on a per serving basis is important from a practical stand point. Often times scientists talk in terms the amount of polyphenols per 100 grams. While this is informative scientifically, when was the last time you ate 100 grams (~17 Tablespoons) of ground cloves (cloves have the highest polyphenol content per 100 grams followed closely by dried peppermint).

Below I have listed below the Top 25 Richest Food Sources of Polyphenols with the serving amount in parentheses.

Top 25  Riches Food Sources of Polyphenols (per serving)

  1. Black Elderberry
  2. Black Chokeberry
  3. Blackcurrant
  4. Highbush blueberry
  5. Globe artichoke heads
  6. Coffee, filtered
  7. Lowbush Blueberry
  8. Sweet Cherry
  9. Strawberry
  10. Blackberry
  11. Plum
  12. Red Raspberry
  13. Flaxseed Meal
  14. Dark Chocolate
  15. Chestnut
  16. Black Tea
  17. Green Tea
  18. Pure Apple Juice
  19. Apple
  20. Whole Grain Rye Bread
  21. Hazelnut
  22. red wine
  23. Soy Yogurt
  24. Cocoa Powder
  25. Pure Pomegranate Juice

Honorable Mentions (in the top 50)

  • Black olives
  • Spinach
  • Pecans
  • Black beans
  • Red Onion
  • Broccoli
  • Soy Milk

Surprisingly Low on The List

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Pumpkin
  • Roasted Peanuts

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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27 thoughts on “Top 25 Highest Polyphenol Rich Foods

  1. thank u 4 posting this, a very important information about antioxidant, some people should know about.i know i am taking antioxidant each day n i'm getting it tea n some veg.

  2. How can the Polyphenols in Foods Cause an Iron Deficiency when they also contain iron and vitamin C. Dose all Polyphenols block absorption of iron by the intestines?

  3. What about the
    scientific name: Vitis Rotundifolia Michx:, common name: muscadine, Vartieal Mucsadine Black Beauty or Darlene grapes.


  5. I completely agree with you in regard to some foods containing polyphenols, but I also heard that soya and any product or food containing soya is bad for your health in quite a few forms as well as all the soya derivatives.
    Lechtin as well is bad for your digestion . Could you tell me what foods or fruits contain it, so we have to refrain from ingestin such a bad enemy of our health.

  6. I’m confused , on the one hand it says don’t eat lectins, which contain soy, then it says to eat soy milk on this list. I don’t generally eat any soy, but anyway., I suffer from sever fatigue among other stomach problems, and this research is really confusing me. Do we just incorporate these foods/spices in our daily meals. I have a lot of stomach issues and the 3 dietitians I’ve seen have been no help, per order of my physicians. Maybe I am missing something. Do you have pamphlets, such as meal plans?

    • Barbara,
      Yes you need not eat anything containing soy because it has an enzyme which humans cannot digest properly. [If] anything the only soy products you may consider to consume is ‘miso, or tempeh’ because these foods are fermented……..and you are correct it does mess with your thyroid and your metabolism as well. I believe it is best to stick with vegetables such as spinach, broccoli, butternut squash, garlic, onions, peas, carrots…….fruits such as apples, all dark berries, strawberries, pineapple……….fresh fish, seafood, lean beef, chicken. And limit all processed grains. Try to eat sprouted grain bread, rye bread. Good Luck with your conquest for healthy living and eating! Bon Appetit!

    • I do believe he is ‘assuming everyone knows what a ‘serving’ is for each food listed. And if you do not then I am most certain you can google ‘what a serving is for each food listed’. Good luck with your conquest in healthy living and healthy eating! Bon appetite!

  7. I found an article on the good benefits of polyphenols and will increase our diets but my husband has a constant stomach ache and bathroom problems and even though has been thru soooo many test the problems persist. His diet is very limited to certain foods none of which are really bad except he consumes a large amount of sugar on shredded wheat cereal and bananas or strawberrys…other than that pretty basic diet..He doesn’t eat anything excessively or drink cokes etc. Any info you can shed on his possible problem would help

    • I know it is NOT at all easy, but I would suggest he totally cuts out sugar. And yes have 1 cheat day a week having sugar. As for myself, it was NOT easy cutting out M&M’s daily……..Probiotics?! Taking a probiotic in pill form from the health food store may help with his stomach ache. It is possible he has a ‘leaky gut’ so he will want to cut out foods which contribute to that. Good luck with your research into healthy happy living!

  8. I want to thank you for the list of polyphenols. I have been eating polyphenols in the past
    without knowing what they they were polyphenols. You have extended my list which I find
    very informatine. thank you again.Geri

  9. A Sample of what a day or two would look like showing the foods to eat with polyphenols the main focus.

    3 meals a day and 2 other “snack” times.

    Thank you,


  10. some of those things on the list are also bad for you, not saying that your not partially right what about folic acid and the acid that’s in most of these berries