Difference Between Oat and Barley


Main Difference

The main difference between oat and barley is that oat is a cereal grain grows for its seed and barley is also a cereal grain a member of the grass family.

Oat vs. Barley

Oats are eaten in the form of oatmeal and granola bars that eaten as a snack. Barley is a whole grain food. Oat is high in fat, and barley is low in fat. Oat is also low in calories and nutrients as compared to barley. Barley is higher in calories nutrients and fibers as well. Oat is less healthy food. Barley is a complete and healthier diet. In Latin oats are known as “Avena sativa,” and barley is known as “Hordeum vulgare.” Oat is growing in a variety of soil types generally in cool, moist climates. Barley is one of the earliest cultivated grains that are grown all over the world in the regions where other cereals do not flourish due to lack of moisture, altitude, or other climate conditions. Oats are grown in all continents and barely are dominant in North Americans. Oats contains 27% selenium and 18% thiamine and dietary fibers. Barley contains 52% selenium and 30% copper and manganese. Oats are used in baking. Barley is used in making soups. Oats are growing for using as animal bedding straw. Barley is used for livestock feed. Less than 5% of oat production is used for human food. 8% barely is used for beer. Oats can also be fed to animals, stalk and all. Livestock will eat barley. Oats are commonly used as breakfast. Barley is also used as cereals in breakfast. Oat is cereal grain, which is used for its seed. Barley is cereal grains from the grass family.


Comparison Chart

Snacks or cerealsWhole diet
150 cal/cup200-270 cal/cup
66 grams78 grams

What is Oat?

Oats are used as cereals grains and are very popular as a healthy food because it has high nutritional value. It has also been used as breakfast oatmeal for centuries and is also used for some other reasons. The flavor of oat is nutty, and it is an excellent supplement to bread and other foods. Oats are high in calcium, protein, vitamin E, fibers, and much other nutrition. Oats are eating in the form of oatmeal and granola bars. However, oats are cereal specie that is produced for its seed. Oatmeal also helps in weight loss; it also reduces risks of heart diseases and lower blood sugar level. Boiled oats in water are used as a breakfast. Various types of oats, like rolled oats, are used for human consumption as well as oats, are also used as a feed for livestock. However, oats don’t contain gluten, rarely they are grown in same fields of wheat and barley, and these fields sometimes contaminate oats with gluten. Although, some people who have gluten intolerance disease or celiac disease may have to exercise caution while eating oats. One cup of dry oats contains approximately 297 calories. Oats also play an important role in improving satiety (feeling of fullness), digestive, cardiovascular, diet quality, and general metabolic health. Oats can also be used to reduce constipation and also help to run the gastrointestinal tract smoothly. Improve immune health and reducing the risk of obesity and chronic disease. Some researchers state that eating oats appears to help in reducing hunger.


What is Barley?

Barley is a part of the grass family and grows over 100 countries and one of the most popular cereals crops and exceed only by wheat, corn, and rice crops. It was known to be one of the first cultivated grains, mainly in Eurasia as early as 10,000 years ago. In 2016, barley was ranked 4th in quantity produced among different grains about 141 million tonnes. Barley is a whole grain food, and its consumption results in several health benefits. Barley is high in soluble fibers which reduce blood cholesterol and blood glucose level. It is also low in fat. Pearled barley is mostly available in supermarkets near rice, dry beans, and pulses. Flour of barley is also available in the food market. It is used to thick soups and stews and also used in baking. In some recipes, wheat flour and barley flour is used to combine. Flakes of barley are used in the baking process. Barley is also used in the malted form. Soaked and dried kernels are used to form barley malt. Barley is also used to form beers, including malt extracts, syrups, and flavorings. Cooked barley is also added to a salad to provide extra fibers. Sometimes breakfast food is also including barley as an ingredient. In stews and soups, barley is essentially used. Barley is also used as animal food and for beer production. Barley is grown almost across all the regions of the world. Also, it has an important vital part of Tibetan cuisine. This grain is mostly eaten in huge amount in Europe. Barley bread is also used in different cultures. Barley helps to lower cholesterol level in the blood, diabetes risk, and decreasing risk of heart diseases and support a healthy heart. It is effective in treating UTI (urinary tract infections). Daily intakes of barley water act as a natural remedy of UTI, cysts, and kidney stones.

Key Differences

  1. Oat is not a whole grain diet conversely barley is a whole grain diet.
  2. Oat is used for livestock feed, whereas barley is used for human consumption.
  3. Oats are used in baking; on the other hand; barley is used in making soups and beer.
  4. Oats grow at moist places on the flip side barley grow across the world.
  5. Oat is rich in minerals and proteins, while barley is rich in dietary fiber.


It is concluded that barley is healthy and rich in nutrients, and oat is less healthy and has fewer nutrients.

Aimie Carlson

Aimie Carlson is an English language enthusiast who loves writing and has a master degree in English literature. Follow her on Twitter at @AimieCarlson