A Deep Dive into Cooking Ingredients in Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley is not just about farming; it’s also about cooking delicious meals that offer various buffs to aid your daily activities. Whether it’s a speedy “Coffee” to start your day or a hearty “Tom Kha Soup” for those tough mine dives, knowing how to prepare your dishes is as crucial as knowing how to swing a scythe. In this guide, we’ll explore which ingredients are essential for cooking and how to source them systematically.

Seasonal Crops

Tip: Plant a variety of crops to make sure you have all the ingredients you need.

Spring Crops

The first thing you should know is that almost every crop has a culinary use. During spring, focus on Daffodils, Kale, Potatoes, Green Beans, Cauliflower, Rhubarb, and Garlic. You’ll notice that Strawberries are an exception; they can’t be used in cooking.

Summer Crops

In summer, your garden should have Hot Peppers, Radishes, Melons, Tomatoes, Blueberries, Corn, and Red Cabbage. Among flowers, only Poppies can be utilized for recipes.

Fall Crops

As autumn leaves start to fall, make sure you plant Eggplant, Amaranth, Cranberries, Yams, Pumpkins, Beets, and Artichokes. Interestingly, there are no flowers in fall that can be used in cooking.

Island Crops

From Ginger Island, don’t forget to grab Pineapples and Taro Tuber.

Crop Count

Keep a stockpile of each crop; about 5 seeds are recommended for the next year. If you want to be more precise, you’ll need 8 Tomatoes, 4 Yams, and 4 Cranberries for recipes. The rest require less than 3 of each.

Foraging Opportunities

Tip: Some foraging items like Cave Carrot can be found while mining.

Spring Forage

Foraging is another activity you shouldn’t neglect. In spring, keep an eye out for Wild Onions, Dandelions, and Morels.

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Fall Forage

In the autumn, gather Blackberries, Hazelnuts, and Wild Plums. During winter, pick up Winter Root.

Unusable Forage

Take note that some foraging items, particularly those found in summer, can’t be used for cooking. This includes flowers and vivid mushrooms like Red and Purple Mushrooms.

Other Notable Forage

Also, add Cave Carrot, Coconut, Ginger, and Leeks to your list. Cave Carrots can be found in bunches during mining, while Coconuts and Ginger are easy to come by.

Livestock and Animal Products

Tip: Make sure to regularly check the products from your livestock.

Essential Animal Products

For animal products, you’ll need 8 Eggs, 12 Milk, 3 Cheese, 2 Mayonnaise, and 1 Void Mayonnaise. To simplify, keep at least one chicken and one cow, and you’ll have more than enough products. Void Mayonnaise can either be produced from your Void Chickens or bought directly.

Fishing Delicacies

Tip: Keep a stocked refrigerator for your fishing catch.

For fishing, most of the fish you catch, including seaweed, algae, and crab pot items, can be stored for future recipes. The majority of recipes only require one fish. Carp needs 4, Sardine and Eel need 2 each.

Additional Items

Lastly, you’ll need 1 Maple Syrup and 2 Squid Ink. For spices and other add-ins, you’ll require 18 Sugar, 22 Wheat Flour, 3 Rice, 11 Oil, and 4 Vinegar. These items can easily be bought from Pierre’s shop.


In summary, the second year is all about proper planning. Save your seeds and make sure to have a variety of each for the next planting season. Keep at least 13 Garlic, remember to save Common Mushrooms and Morels, and don’t forget to stockpile Squid Ink. For fruits, Apples and Apricots are the only ones that have a culinary use if you decide not to plant every type of fruit tree.

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The beauty of Stardew Valley lies in its simplicity. With a little planning, you can have a pantry stocked with everything you need to become the best chef in Pelican Town. So put on your chef’s hat, and let’s get cooking!

Note: You can refer to this guide along with other tutorials for an all-around Stardew Valley experience.

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