A comparative visual representation of beef liver and chicken liver, surrounded by various vegetables and spices, with a detailed list of nutritional differences highlighted in the center.

Which Is Better Beef Liver vs Chicken Liver? Health Benefits

Are you wondering which is better: beef liver or chicken liver? In this article, you will learn about the differences and similarities between Beef Liver and Chicken Liver. Although they come from different animals, both liver types have amazing health benefits.

Some recipes prefer beef liver over chicken liver, and some the other way around. If you are not familiar with cooking or eating liver, you should know that it is a rich source of iron.

If you are following a low-carb or keto diet, you may have heard that organ meats are a great way to get essential nutrients that are often lacking in muscle meat. But which type of liver is better for you: beef liver or chicken liver? 

In this article, we will compare the nutritional value, health benefits, risks and side effects, and keto recipes of these two types of liver. 

Lots of people have an iron deficiency that can be boosted by eating iron-rich foods. According to Healthline, the liver is one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, as well as being low in calories and high in protein. 

What Is Beef Liver?

Beef liver is the liver of a cow, a farm animal that belongs to the bovine family. It is one of the most nutrient-dense foods you can eat. It contains high-quality protein, essential amino acids, essential vitamins, essential minerals, and antioxidants. Beef liver is especially rich in vitamin A, vitamin B12, iron, copper, and choline. They play important roles in energy production, cell growth, immune function, nervous system health, and reproductive health. 

Beef liver has a strong taste and a firm texture. Some people may find it unpleasant. 

However, there are ways to make it more palatable, such as soaking it in milk, marinating it in lemon juice, or cooking it with onions and bacon. 

Beef liver is widely available in grocery stores, butcher shops, and online markets. You can also find beef liver from grass-fed cows, which may have higher nutritional value and lower environmental impact than conventional beef liver.

A fresh piece of beef liver garnished with a sprig of herbs, placed on a white plate, next to a checkered napkin and knife, on a wooden surface.
Beef Liver vs Chicken Liver

Beef Liver Nutrition Facts

According to the USDA, a 100-gram serving of cooked beef liver provides the following nutrition facts:

NutrientAmount% Daily Value
Calories175
Protein27 g
Fat5 g
Carbohydrates5 g
Fiber0 g
Sugar0 g
Vitamin A16,899 IU338%
Vitamin B1270.7 mcg2946%
Folate260 mcg65%
Iron6.5 mg36%
Copper14.6 mg1622%
Choline418 mg76%
Beef Liver Nutrition Facts

As you can see, beef liver is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin B12, copper, and choline, as well as a good source of folate and iron. These nutrients are essential for many bodily functions, such as vision, red blood cell production, DNA synthesis, nerve signaling, liver health, and brain development.

What Is Chicken Liver?

Chicken liver is the liver of a chicken, a domesticated bird that belongs to the poultry family. It is also a highly nutritious food, as it contains high-quality protein, essential amino acids, essential vitamins, essential minerals, and antioxidants. 

Chicken liver is especially rich in vitamin B6, selenium, and phosphorus, which play important roles in metabolism, thyroid function, bone health, and DNA repair. 

Chicken liver has a milder flavor and a softer texture than beef liver, which some people may prefer. 

However, it also has a higher amount of omega-6 fatty acids, which can cause inflammation if consumed in excess. Chicken liver is widely available in grocery stores, butcher shops, and online markets. You can also find chicken liver from pasture-raised chickens, which may have higher nutritional value and lower exposure to antibiotics and hormones than conventional chicken liver.

A plate of raw chicken liver surrounded by ingredients like onions, garlic, and spices on a textured surface.
Chicken Liver Benefits

Chicken Liver Nutrition Facts

According to the USDA, a 100-gram serving of cooked chicken liver provides the following nutrition facts:

NutrientAmount% Daily Value
Calories167
Protein25 g
Fat7 g
Carbohydrates1 g
Fiber0 g
Sugar0 g
Vitamin A11,077 IU222%
Vitamin B60.9 mg53%
Selenium45.7 mcg83%
Phosphorus387 mg31%
Choline330 mg60%
Chicken Liver Nutrition Facts

As you can see, chicken liver is an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin B6, selenium, and phosphorus, as well as a good source of choline. These nutrients are essential for many bodily functions, such as immune system, hormone production, antioxidant defense, and cell membrane integrity.

Comparing The Taste of Beef Liver vs Taste of Chicken Liver

Beef liver and chicken liver have different tastes and textures that may appeal to different preferences. 

Beef liver has a stronger and richer flavor than chicken liver, which some people may find too intense or metallic. Beef liver also has a firmer and chewier texture than chicken liver, which some people may find too tough or dry. 

Chicken liver has a milder and sweeter flavor than beef liver, which some people may find more palatable or delicate. Chicken liver also has a softer and creamier texture than beef liver, which some people may find more tender or moist. 

The taste and texture of liver can also be influenced by the way it is prepared, cooked, and seasoned. Some common ways to make liver more tasty are soaking raw beef liver in milk, marinating it in lemon juice, or cooking it with onions and bacon. 

Keto Chicken Liver Recipe: My Grandma’s Recipe Made Keto

Keto Chicken Liver
Keto Chicken Liver Recipe – My Grandma’s Recipe Made Keto

Is Liver Good for You? Comparing the Nutrition Facts Chicken Liver vs Beef Liver

Are you wondering what is better: Beef Liver vs Chicken Liver: Which One Is Healthier and Why?

Both beef liver and chicken liver are good for you! 

They provide a wide range of essential nutrients that are beneficial for your health. 

A comparative visual representation of beef liver and chicken liver, surrounded by various vegetables and spices, with a detailed list of nutritional differences highlighted in the center.
Which Is Better Beef Liver vs Chicken Liver? Health Benefits

However, they also have some differences in their nutritional profiles. This may make one a better choice than the other depending on your needs and preferences. 

Here are some of the main comparisons between beef liver and chicken liver:

NutrientBeef LiverChicken LiverDifference
Vitamin A338% DV222% DV116%
Vitamin B665% DV53% DV12%
Vitamin B122946% DV693% DV2253%
Folate65% DV147% DV-82%
Iron36% DV50% DV-14%
Selenium60% DV83% DV-23%
Copper1622% DV44% DV1578%
Choline76% DV60% DV16%
Comparing the Nutrition Facts Chicken Liver vs Beef Liver

Vitamin A

Beef liver has more vitamin A than chicken liver. It is important for eye health, skin health, and immune function. 

However, too much vitamin A can be toxic, especially for pregnant women and children. You should limit your intake of beef liver to avoid vitamin A overdose. Chicken liver has a lower amount of vitamin A, which may be safer for these groups of people.

Vitamin B12

Beef liver is a great source of vitamin 12. It has more vitamin B12 than chicken liver. It is important for red blood cell production, nerve function, and DNA synthesis. 

Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause anemia, fatigue, numbness, and cognitive impairment, especially for vegans and vegetarians who do not consume animal products. Beef liver is one of the best foods to prevent and treat vitamin B12 deficiency. Chicken liver has a lower amount of vitamin B12, which may not be enough for some people who have higher requirements.

Vitamin B6

Chicken liver has more vitamin B6 than beef liver. It is important for metabolism, hormone production, and immune function. 

Vitamin B6 deficiency can cause skin problems, nerve problems, and anemia, especially for people who have chronic diseases, alcoholism, or malabsorption. Chicken liver is one of the best foods to prevent and treat vitamin B6 deficiency. 

Beef liver has a lower amount of vitamin B6, which may not be enough for some people who have higher requirements.

Selenium

Chicken liver has more selenium than beef liver. It is important for thyroid function, antioxidant defense, and DNA repair. 

Selenium deficiency can cause thyroid problems, immune problems, and infertility, especially for people who live in areas with low selenium in the soil. Chicken liver is one of the best foods to prevent and treat selenium deficiency. 

Beef liver has a lower amount of selenium, which may not be enough for some people who have higher requirements.

Copper

Beef liver has more copper than chicken liver. It is important for energy production, iron metabolism, and nervous system health. Copper deficiency can cause anemia, weakness, and nerve damage, especially for people who have genetic disorders, malnutrition, or zinc overdose. Beef liver is one of the best foods to prevent and treat copper deficiency. 

Chicken liver has a lower amount of copper, which may not be enough for some people who have higher requirements.

Choline

Beef liver has more choline than chicken liver. It is important for liver health, brain development, healthy brain function and nervous system function. 

Choline deficiency can cause fatty liver, cognitive impairment, and neurological disorders, especially for pregnant women, infants, and elderly people who have higher requirements. Beef liver is one of the best foods to prevent and treat choline deficiency.

Chicken liver has a lower amount of choline, which may not be enough for some people who have higher requirements.

As you can see, both beef liver and chicken liver have their own advantages and disadvantages, depending on the nutrient you are looking for. The best way to decide which one is better for you is to consider your individual needs, preferences, and goals, as well as the quality and quantity of the liver you consume. 

In general, it is a good idea to eat a variety of organ meats from different animals to get a balanced intake of essential nutrients.

Slices of bread topped with beef liver pate, garnished with herbs and spices, placed next to a mushroom on a wooden surface.
Beef Liver vs Chicken Liver Taste

Risks and Side Effects

While liver is a healthy food, it also has some risks and side effects that you should be aware of before eating it. 

Here are some of the main ones:

Vitamin A toxicity

Beef liver has a high amount of vitamin A, which can be toxic if consumed in excess. Vitamin A toxicity can cause nausea, vomiting, headache, dizziness, blurred vision, skin problems, bone problems, and liver damage. 

Pregnant women and children are especially vulnerable to vitamin A toxicity, as it can cause birth defects and growth retardation. The recommended daily intake of vitamin A for adults is 900 mcg for men and 700 mcg for women. The upper limit is 3000 mcg. A 100-gram serving of beef liver contains about 16,899 IU of vitamin A, which is equivalent to 5,066 mcg. This means that eating just one serving of beef liver can exceed the upper limit of vitamin A by almost two times. Therefore, you should limit your intake of beef liver to avoid vitamin A toxicity. Chicken liver has a lower amount of vitamin A, but it can still cause vitamin A toxicity if consumed in large amounts. 

The recommended daily intake of vitamin A for adults is the same as for beef liver, and the upper limit is the same as well. A 100-gram serving of chicken liver contains about 11,077 IU of vitamin A, which is equivalent to 3,326 mcg. This means that eating just one serving of chicken liver can exceed the upper limit of vitamin A by more than one time. Therefore, you should also limit your intake of chicken liver to avoid vitamin A toxicity.

Iron overload

Both beef liver and chicken liver are rich in iron, which is important for red blood cell production, oxygen transport, and immune function. However, too much iron can be harmful, especially for people who have a genetic condition called hemochromatosis. It causes the body to absorb and store too much iron. Iron overload can cause liver damage, heart problems, diabetes, arthritis, and hormonal imbalances. 

The recommended daily intake of iron for adults is 8 mg for men and 18 mg for women, and the upper limit is 45 mg. A 100-gram serving of beef liver contains about 6.5 mg of iron, which is 81% of the daily value for men and 36% of the daily value for women. A 100-gram serving of chicken liver contains about 9.0 mg of iron, which is 113% of the daily value for men and 50% of the daily value for women. 

This means that eating just one serving of either type of liver can provide a significant amount of iron, which can be beneficial for people who are iron deficient, but harmful for people who are iron sensitive. Therefore, you should monitor your iron intake and consult your doctor before eating liver if you have hemochromatosis or other iron-related disorders.

Contamination

The liver is a vital organ that performs many important functions, such as filtering toxins, metabolizing drugs, and producing bile. However, this also means that the liver can accumulate harmful substances, such as pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, and heavy metals, from the environment and the diet of the animals. 

These contaminants can pose health risks for humans who consume liver. Especially if the liver comes from animals that are raised in poor conditions, fed with low-quality feed, or treated with chemicals. 

Therefore, you should choose liver from healthy sources, such as grass-fed, organic, or pasture-raised animals, and avoid liver from animals that are sick, diseased, or exposed to pollution. You should also wash and cook liver properly to reduce the risk of infection and contamination.

Allergy

Some people may be allergic to liver or other organ meats, which can cause symptoms such as hives, itching, swelling, wheezing, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and anaphylaxis. If you have a history of food allergies or intolerance, you should be careful when eating liver and seek medical attention if you experience any adverse reactions. You should also avoid liver if you are allergic to any of the ingredients or spices that are used to prepare it, such as onions, garlic, herbs, or salt.

These are some of the main risks and side effects of eating liver. While liver is a healthy food that can provide many benefits, it can also cause problems if consumed in excess, in poor quality, or by people who are sensitive to it. Therefore, you should eat liver in moderation, in good quality, and with caution. You should also consult your doctor before eating liver if you have any medical conditions or concerns.

Now Read: Comparing Pork Liver vs Beef Liver: What Is Better?

An informational image comparing the benefits of beef liver versus pork liver, surrounded by various illustrations of vegetables and meats. The website link www.CoachTallyRus.com/Keto-Recipes is displayed at the bottom.
Pork Liver vs Beef Liver Benefits

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