Creatine, (CREA) a central constituent in energy metabolism, is obtained from dietary animal protein or de novo synthesis from guanidinoacetic acid (GAA). Especially in all-vegetable diets, supplemental CREA or GAA may restore the CREA availability in tissues, and hence, improve performance. In this study, 768 one-d-old male Ross 308 broilers were assigned to 1 of 4 diets: negative control, all-vegetable corn-soybean-based; negative control supplemented with either 0.6 or 1.2 g of GAA per kilogram of feed; and positive control (60, 30, and 30 g/kg of fish meal in the starter, grower, and finisher diets, respectively). Each treatment was replicated in 6 pens of 32 birds each. At the end of the grower period (d 26), 2 birds per pen were euthanized for metabolic measurements. Four broilers per pen were selected at slaughter age (d 39) to determine carcass characteristics and meat quality. Compared with the negative control, GAA supplementation resulted in an improved gain:feed ratio (P <0.05) and ADG (P <0.05; + 2.7 and + 2.2% for GAA at 0.6 and 1.2 g/kg, respectively) throughout the entire period. Breast meat yield was higher for the GAA diets compared with that of the negative control birds (P <0.05; 30.6 vs. 29.4%) and was comparable with that of the positive control birds (30.2%). With regard to meat quality, lower ultimate pH values, higher cooking and press fluid losses, and higher color L* values were observed for the GAA diets compared with those of the negative control diet (P <0.05). These effects were small, however. The GAA and CREA levels in breast meat were lower and higher, respectively, in GAA-fed birds compared with those of the control birds (P <0.01). The diets did not affect plasma metabolic traits, except that plasma insulin-like growth factor I concentrations were almost twice as high in animals fed 1.2 g/kg of GAA compared with those of all other treatments. The GAA included in all-vegetable diets improved animal performance for the whole rearing period and increased breast meat yield.