The first thing most people think of eating when they need more potassium is a banana. According to the USDA Nutrient Database, single, medium-size banana, about 7 inches long has 422 milligrams (mg) of potassium. Now, I love bananas, and in order to get our recommended daily 4,700 mg of potassium* from bananas only, we would have to consume over 10 bananas every day. That’s a lot of bananas!
Before grabbing all those bananas, here are 11 other whole plant-based foods with even more potassium than a banana:
Baked potatoes (with skin) top this list with over 1,600 mg of potassium in each large (3-4 ¼” diameter) potato! For example, a large russet potato has 1,644 mg, a large red potato has 1,630 mg, and a large white potato has 1,627 mg of potassium!
2. Yams and Acorn Squash
Yams and acorn squash are also high on this list. One cup of yam flesh, cut into cubes packs 911 mg of potassium, more than twice the potassium in a single medium-size banana. And coming in a close second, one cup of acorn squash cut into cubes has 896 mg of potassium!
3. Sweet potatoes
A medium baked sweet potato that’s about 2” in diameter and 5” in length has 542 mg of potassium. These are great with a meal and also make a delicious and handy snack. Simply prick the skin several times and place them in the oven at 400 °F for 45 minutes, or until tender when pricked with a fork.
A half cup of shelled, boiled edamame, one of my favorite snacks, has 443 mg of potassium. I find it easy to have more than a half cup of this quick, easy, and nutritious treat! A cup of firm tofu that’s prepared with calcium sulfate, the common source of calcium in tofu, has 598 mg of potassium and a cup of tempeh, or fermented soy beans, has 684 mg of potassium. Try making a quick and simple miso soup by adding about ¼ cup of miso, a package of firm tofu, drained and cut into ½” cubes, and ¼ - ½ cup of dried seaweed into about 6 cups of boiling water. Simmer for 1-2 minutes and serve.
5. Sun-Dried Tomatoes
A half cup of sun-dried tomatoes has 463 mg of potassium. Sun-dried tomatoes are delicious and can be added to foods such as soups, salads, sauces, and sandwiches, either as is (dried) or reconstituted by soaking in water. Avoid sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil to protect your arteries.
This tasty snack has 618 mg of potassium in a half cup of seedless raisins. Not only do raisins make a great snack, they are a great addition to salads, soups, cereal (hot and cold), and baked goods.
7. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
I’ll bet you never thought about unsweetened cocoa powder having lots of potassium. In fact, half a cup of unsweetened cocoa powder has 656 mg of potassium. Not that you will consume half a cup in one sitting, you can sprinkle a tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder over your banana and add another 82 mg of potassium to your banana.
Cooked beat greens and Swiss chard come in at the top of the greens. A cup of cooked beet greens has 1,309 mg and the same amount of Swiss chard has 961 mg of potassium. These greens are delicious in salads, in soups, blended in sauces, or just sprinkled with a nice balsamic vinegar.
While beans are a great source of potassium in general, a half cup of some beans have even more potassium than a medium banana, and a full cup of pretty much all beans come in at over 422 mg of potassium. Red beans, white beans, and lima beans weigh in at 612, 502, and 485 mg per half cup respectively. And black beans, pinto beans, kidney beans, and navy beans, for example, come in at 801, 746, 717, and 708 mg of potassium per cup. Beans are great with a whole grain such as brown rice in a burrito or a bowl, and make a great, hearty addition to soups and salads.
A single avocado has 690 mg of potassium. Try making guacamole by adding fresh roasted chiles, onions, and garlic, adding avocado slices to toast or a sandwich, or adding avocado cubes to a salad.
Sunflower, pumpkin, and squash seeds are a great source of potassium. Each half cup of dry roasted sunflower seeds has 544 mg of potassium while each half cup of dried pumpkin & squash seeds has 522 mg of potassium. Seeds are great sprinkled over cereal, over salads, or to add crunch to other dishes, and also make a great snack.
*Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs): Estimated Average Requirements, Food and Nutrition Board, Institute of Medicine, National Academies.
Potassium values from the USDA nutrient database.