A high prevalence of undernutrition has previously been reported in indigenous Māori (49 %) and non-Māori (38 %) octogenarians and may be associated with risk of micronutrient deficiencies. We examined vitamin and mineral intakes and the contributing food sources among 216 Māori and 362 non-Māori participating in Life and Living to Advanced age a Cohort Study in New Zealand, using a repeat 24-h multiple-pass recall. More than half of the Māori and non-Māori participants had intakes below the estimated average requirement from food alone for Ca, Mg and Se. Vitamin B6 (Māori women only), folate (women only), vitamin E (Māori women; all men) and Zn (men only) were low in these ethnic and sex subgroups. Women had intakes of higher nutrient density in folate, vitamin C, Ca, Mg, K, vitamin A (non-Māori) and β-carotene (Māori) compared with men (P<0·05). When controlling for age and physical function, β-carotene, folate, vitamin C, Ca and Mg were no longer significantly different, but vitamins B2, B12, E and D, Fe, Na, Se and Zn became significantly different for Māori between men and women. When controlling for age and physical function, vitamins A and C and Ca were no longer significantly different, but vitamin B2, Fe, Na and Zn became significantly different for non-Māori between men and women. For those who took nutritional supplements, Māori were less likely to be deficient in food alone intake of vitamin A, folate and Mg, whereas non-Maori were less likely to be deficient in intakes of Mg, K and Zn, but more likely to be deficient in vitamin B12 intake. A lack of harmonisation in nutrient recommendations hinders the interpretation of nutrient adequacy; nonetheless, Ca, Mg and Se are key micronutrients of concern. Milk and cheese were important contributions to Ca intake, whereas bread was a key source of Mg and Se. Examination of dietary intake related to biochemical status and health outcomes will establish the utility of these observations.