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Game actions drain your character's hunger bar over time. If emptied your character will starve, halting health regen and draining hit points to 25%. Healing items and abilities can be used but any health over 25% will continue to drain.

So you need to eat up! There are many different food items in the game which can be eaten raw or cooked on a fire (or even in a cooking pot which allows for more advanced meals--including honey or spices can even yield strong buffs).

Food items are perishable and will eventually expire (you can check the expiration counter with a scholar's lens). Old food can still be eaten, but won't be nearly as filling and will disappear after a time. Old ingredients can't be cooked.

To find out more continue reading!

Simple Cooking

Food can be cooked on a simple fire (temporary) or a fire pit (permanent).

Object Materials
Simple fire Simple Fire Wood2 × 5 Wood
Tinder2 × 3 Tinder
Flint × 1 Flint
Burns out after 3 minutes, leaving one charcoal.
Adding wood will make the fire last longer.
Fire pit Fire Pit Stone2 × 20 Stone
Wood2 × 4 Wood
Flint × 4 Flint
Charcoal × 4 Charcoal
Light by adding wood (each log burns for 30 seconds).

Cooking pots can be used on either fire source but the fire pit is more convenient.

When the food is done it will change in appearance, leaving it on the fire too long will cause it to burn up (onions and tomatoes don't look different cooked, making them trickier to not burn). You can cook any quantity at once, but doing so will yield less cooking experience than cooking individually. Cooking with a cooking pot will also yield more experience.

Leveling Up and Experience

Cooking food on an open fire gives 44 base experience. Cooking multiple at once gives more xp than that, but significantly less in total than if you had cooked them one at a time. Cooking with a cooking pot seems to scale with the nutritional value of the ingredients, cooking level, and cooking time, and gives way more skill xp than an open fire.

It appears that:

  • 1% nutritional value from ingredients equals 5xp but stops giving xp after 40%.
  • Each log (30 seconds on the fire) adds 7.5xp.
  • There is a 75xp fixed base xp bonus to using a cooking pot.
  • There is a scaling bonus of 2.5xp per cooking level added on top of everything else.

HOWEVER this is tentative and might break apart on better testing across a wider range of cooking levels.

(This section also jumps the gun a little bit on nutritional value; see the Ingredients and Advanced Cooking for more info.)

Ingredients

Combining stacks of the same ingredient will average their expiration timers. Cooking resets the timer.

(In addition to listed sources all items can be randomly found in chests in the Underworld and some other maps.)

Food Raw Cooked Expiration Notes
Salmonberries Salmonberries 7% -- 1 days Gathered from Salmonberry Bushes.
Can only be eaten raw.
Raw meat Cooked meat Meat 6% 20% 3 days Dropped by many animals.
Chance to drain hunger by 6% if eaten raw.
Potato Cooked potato Potatoes 6% 18% 14 days Plant potatoes (drop on dirt) to double potatoes.
Rarely dropped by raccoons.
Cooked potatoes stack, but raw ones don't.
Milk Milk 6% -- 3 days Use a bucket on a cow.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Egg Cooked egg Eggs 4% 16% 4 days Well-fed chickens can lay eggs on grass tiles.
Chance to drain hunger by 4% if eaten raw.
Fish meat Cooked fish Fish 4% 12% 3 days Gathered by Fishing.
Chance to drain hunger by 4% if eaten raw.
Tomato Tomatoes 4% 11% 7 days Grown with tomato seeds.
Doesn't change graphic when cooked.
Carrot Cooked carrot Carrots 3% 10% 14 days Grown with carrot seeds.
One of the longest lasting vegetables.
Onion Onions 3% 8-13% 7 days Grown with onion seeds.
Kept getting different values from cooking onions.
Lettuce Lettuce 2% -- 7 days Grown with lettuce seeds.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Rare Meats Raw Cooked Expiration Notes
Raw meat Cooked meat Mystery Meat 20% 60% 4 days Rarely found in treasure chests.
Dropped by some mobs.
Also used to change pet appearances.
Chance to drain hunger by 20% if eaten raw.
Raw meat Cooked meat Mutton 8% 24% 3 days Rarely Found in treasure chests.
Chance to drain hunger by 8% if eaten raw.
Raw meat Cooked meat Raw Lamb 8% 24% 3 days Rarely Found in treasure chests.
Chance to drain hunger by 8% if eaten raw.
(Cannot be used in a cooking pot.)
Honey and Spices Raw Cooked Expiration Notes
Honey Honey 4% -- 30 days Dropped by Hive Soldiers in the Underworld.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Raw: +2 to all skill levels (20 seconds).
Black pepper Black Pepper 1% -- 30 days Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Raw: +150% xp gain (60 seconds).
Caraway Caraway 1% -- 30 days Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Raw: Temporary speed buff.
Coriander Coriander 1% -- 30 days Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.
Can only be cooked with a cooking pot.
Raw: +1hp regen/sec (60 seconds).
Misc. Stuff Notes
Water bucket Water Bucket -- -- -- Use a bucket facing deep water.
No nutritional value added.
Cooking pot Cooking Pot -- -- -- Made with Hematite × 50 Hematite and Silver × 50 Silver.
Used on a fire source for advanced cooking.

Advanced Cooking

Using a cooking pot allows you to combine ingredients, cook them longer, and add spices to your meals.

Nutritional Value

The amount of hunger filled by food made in a cooking pot is straightforward:

  • 0.5% is added per cooking level.
  • 1.5% is added per log (each log fuels a fire pit 8% and burns for 30 seconds).
  • The total "raw" percents from all added ingredients (so 6% per meat, 4% per fish, etc.).
    • Each ingredient must be added one at a time to be fully effective!
  • Tea (boiled water) has no nutritional value at all unless milk, honey, or spices are added.

Combining Stacks

Meals stacked together are averaged. For example if you have a meat dish that would fill 100% of your hunger bar, and pick up a second meat dish that would fill 50%, you now have a stack of two meat dishes that each fill 75%. Meals of the same name will stack even if their original ingredients differed. Meals containing spices however will not stack at all.

Expiration

Meals can stay fresh up to 31 days. The function depends on cooking time and your cooking level. The variable in hours is roughly 60% of your cooking level, with every other log being worth double: so if you have 30 cooking, your variable is 18 hours: the first log adds double (36 hours), the second 18 hours, the third is double (36 hours again), then 18, etc.

I don't know why it oscilates like that. But simply put, every two logs adds [3 × (60% of your cooking level)] hours. And since two logs equals one minute on the fire, we can roll with it (see the table below for benchmarks). And finally: if you cook a meal longer than 20 minutes it will be burnt, halving its expiration time and nutrition. So don't do that!

Cooking
Level
Variable Time to Expire added per
Minute Cooked (2 logs)
10 6 18 hours (0.75 days)
20 12 36 hours (1.50 days)
30 18 54 hours (2.25 days)
40 24 72 hours (3.00 days)
50 30 90 hours (3.75 days)
60 36 108 hours (4.50 days)
70 42 126 hours (5.25 days)
80 48 144 hours (6.00 days)
90 54 162 hours (6.75 days)
100 60 180 hours (7.50 days)

Combining Stacks

When combining meals expiration timers are supposed to average as well, but currently the timer is on the food you're originally holding overrides the timer on anything picked up that stacks with it. So you can renew the expiration timer on cooked foods by holding newer foods and picking up older ones. This could be patched out later though.

(This doesn't work for meals containing spices as they cannot stack.)

Food Buffs

Honey and spices add bonuses to meals (they can also be eaten raw for a smaller bonus effect).

Type Effect
Honey Honey Increases all skill levels by up to 5.
Dropped by Hive Soldiers in the Underworld.
Black pepper Black Pepper Increases experience bonus by up to 250%.
Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.
Caraway Caraway Temporarily buffs movement speed.
Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.
Coriander Coriander Buffs health regeneration up to 3 hp/sec.
Gathered from spice bushes.
Dropped by some mobs.

The strength of the buff depends on cooking level, cooking time, and ingredient diversity. The easiest way to get a full buff is to use several different types of ingredients (up to 7 or 8 at lower cooking levels). At 100 cooking you can just make slop (throw the honey or spices into a cooking pot with no other ingredients) and still get the full buff.

The duration of the buff depends on the quantity of honey or spices added. They must be added one at a time: each honey or spice is equal to one minute of buff time. The exception is caraway, which is a temporary movement speed bonus that drops as you move and is gone very quickly. This makes caraway only marginally useful.

(If a sweet or spicy meal is old the buff is still just as good, the nutritional value just drops.)

Types of Meals

You can determine what the meal will be called specifically based on its ingredients. This doesn't influence the nutritional value of the food or anything like that, but it can help to organize different kinds of meals (such as only making black pepper meals with meats, and coriander meals with vegetables, to tell them apart afterward). Or to just be festive.

Dish2 Dishes Dish2
Includes meats (vegetables optional). Cannot contain water or milk.
If >50% of the ingredients are of one ingredient it will be that kind of dish.
Meat Dish Majority of mixed meat ingredients.
Vegetable Dish Majority of mixed vegetable ingredients.
Spicy [x] Dish Also includes spices.
Sweet [x] Dish Also includes honey (spices optional).
Salad2 Salads Salad2
Includes eggs, potatoes, carrots, lettuce, onions, and tomatoes.
If >50% of the ingredients are of one ingredient it will be that kind of salad.
Otherwise it will be called Vegetable Salad. Cannot contain meat.
Spicy [x] Salad Also includes spices.
Sweet [x] Salad Also includes honey (spices optional).
Soup2 Soups Soup2
Water with meat and/or vegetable ingredients. Cannot contain milk.
If >50% of the ingredients are of one ingredient it will be that kind of soup.
Meat Soup Majority of mixed meat ingredients.
Vegetable Soup Majority of mixed vegetable ingredients.
Spicy [x] Soup Also includes spices.
Sweet [x] Soup Also includes honey (spices optional).
Stew2 Stews Stew2
Milk with meat and/or vegetable ingredients. Water doesn't matter.
If >50% of the ingredients are of one ingredient it will be that kind of stew.
Meat Stew Majority of mixed meat ingredients.
Vegetable Stew Majority of mixed vegetable ingredients.
Spicy [x] Stew Also includes spices.
Sweet [x] Stew Also includes honey (spices optional).
Tea2 Teas Tea2
Tea Just water.
Creamy Tea Milk (water optional). Cannot contain honey or spices.
Spicy Tea Water (and/or milk) with spices.
Sweet Tea Water (and/or milk) with honey (spices optional).
Slop2 Slops Slop2
Spicy Slop Just spices.
Sweet Slop Honey (spices optional).
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