Food can be obtained by foraging, trapping, farming or hunting Animals and Monsters. Food refills Hunger and may restore some Health and Sanity, depending on the quality of the food eaten. Eating some foods, such as Monster Meat or Durians, can damage the player's health instead of restoring it. Some foods, such as raw Meat or Morsel, will damage a player's sanity if eaten. Mushrooms have varying effects on Health and Sanity depending on their color. Some special food items, such as Glow Berry, have additional effects when eaten.
Almost all raw food can be Cooked on a Campfire to increase the amount of Health/Hunger/Sanity restored or reduce and sometimes remove Health/Sanity penalties from eating it. Some raw food items, most notably Meats, can be dried on a Drying Rack to produce long lasting food items with increased Health/Hunger/Sanity values. Additionally, a Crock Pot can be used for making foods that have additional benefits.
Food items also have other uses than eating them directly. Meat can be used as bait for carnivores, for the recruitment of Pigs, and as an offering to the Pig King for Gold Nuggets. A renewable way to gain Eggs is by giving meats to birds housed in Bird Cages. Meat is also a requirement to construct the Meat Effigy. Bunnymen can be befriended using Carrots and will become hostile if meat is in the player's inventory. Vegetables and Fruits can be used as bait for herbivores and given to Pigs to obtain Manure. Seeds can be used to bait Bird Traps.
Being of the most important items in the game, (and part of the game's namesake, to not starve) food is typically very valuable in any world; however, given the layouts of different maps and what spawns in them, food availability can vary from being abundant, to dangerously short. Food is affected by the seasons, which likely encourages the player to take advantages of seasonal diets and also take advantages of the food's shelf life.
With the introduction of Overheating mechanic in the Reign of Giants DLC (and carried over to Don't Starve Together and Shipwrecked DLC), some foods are classified as hot or cold, providing an alternative way to combat Freezing and Overheating, respectively.
- For Information on Food values and Priority, see the Crock Pot page.
There are several Food categories:
| Food|| Name|| DLC|| || || || ||Temperature/|
|Batilisk Wing||+3||+12.5||-10||6||Not valid|
|Cooked Batilisk Wing||+8||+18.75||0||10||Not valid|
|Bile-Covered Slop||-1||-10||0||Never||Not valid|
|Brainy Matter||-10||+10||+50||1||Not valid|
|Cooked Cactus Flesh||+1||+12.5||+15||10||×1.0|
|Roasted Coffee Beans||0||+9.375||-5||15||×1.0|
|Dead Dogfish||+1||+25||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Dead Jellyfish||+10||+10||0||6||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Cooked Jellyfish||+10||+18.75||0||10||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Dried Jellyfish||+10||+18.75||0||20||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Dead Rainbow Jellyfish||+10||+10||0||6||Not valid|
|Cooked Rainbow Jellyfish||+10||+18.75||0||10||Not valid|
|Dead Swordfish||+1||+25||0||6||Not valid|
|Dead Wobster||+1||+12.5||0||3||Not valid|
|Delicious Wobster||+1||+12.5||0||6||Not valid|
|Deerclops Eyeball||+60||+75||-15||Never||Not valid|
|Fried Doydoy Egg||+11||+25||-10||10||×1.0|
|Dragoon Heart||+11||+25||-10||10||Not valid|
|Prepared Dragon Fruit||+20||+12.5||0||3||×1.0|
|Extra Smelly Durian||0||+25||-5||6||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Cooked Eel||+8||+13||0||10||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Eye of the Tiger Shark||+60||+75||-15||Never||Not valid|
|Cooked Fish||+1||+12.5||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Fish Morsel||+1||+12.5||0||6||×0.5|
|Cooked Frog Legs||+1||+12.5||0||10||×0.5|
|Gears ( only)||+60||+75||+50||Never||Not valid|
|Glommer's Goop||+40||+9.375||-50||Never||Not valid|
|Glow Berry||+10||+25||-15||10||Not valid|
|Lesser Glow Berry||+3||+12.5||-10||10||Not valid|
|Guardian's Horn||+60||+75||-15||Never||Not valid|
|Roasted Juicy Berries||+3||+18.75||0||1||×0.5|
|Koalefant Trunk||+30||+37.5||0||6||Not valid|
|Winter Koalefant Trunk||+30||+37.5||0||6||Not valid|
|Koalefant Trunk Steak||+40||+75||0||15||Not valid|
|Leafy Meat||0||+12.5||-10||6||Not valid|
|Cooked Leafy Meat||+1||+18.75||0||10||Not valid|
|Light Bulb||+1||0||0||6||Not valid|
|Cooked Mandrake||+100||+150||0||Never||Not valid|
|Monster Meat||-20||+18.75||-15||6||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Cooked Monster Meat||-3||+18.75||-10||15||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Monster Jerky||-3||+18.75||-5||20||×1.0 ×1.0|
|Cooked Blue Cap||-3||0||+10||10||×0.5|
|Cooked Green Cap||-1||0||+15||10||×0.5|
|Cooked Red Cap||+1||0||-10||10||×0.5|
|Neon Quattro||+1||+12.5||0||10||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Neon Quattro||+3||+12.5||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Dark Petals||0||0||-5||6||Not valid|
|Pierrot Fish||+1||+12.5||0||10||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Pierrot Fish||+3||+12.5||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Purple Grouper||+1||+12.5||0||10||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Purple Grouper||+3||+12.5||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Raw Fish||+1||+25||0||3||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Fish Steak||+20||+25||0||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Roe||0||+4.6875||0||10||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Rotten Egg||-1||-10||0||Never||Not valid|
|Toasted Seeds||+1||+4.6875||0||10||Not valid|
|Crop Seeds||+0.5||+9.375||0||40||Not valid|
|Shark Fin||+20||+25||-15||6||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Cooked Sweet Potato||+3||+12.5||0||6||×1.0|
|Hatching Tallbird Egg||+5||+23||0||Never||Not valid|
|Fried Tallbird Egg||0||+37.5||0||6||×4.0|
|Tropical Fish||+1||+12.5||0||3||×1.0 ×0.5|
|Bacon and Eggs||+20||+75||+5||20||Not valid|
|Banana Pop||+20||+12.5||+33||10||Cold/10||Not valid|
|Butter Muffin||+20||+37.5||+5||15||Not valid|
|California Roll||+20||+37.5||+10||10||Not valid|
|Fish Tacos||+20||+37.5||+5||6||Not valid|
|Fist Full of Jam||+3||+37.5||+5||15||Not valid|
|Flower Salad||+40||+12.5||+5||6||Not valid|
|Fresh Fruit Crepes||+60||+150||+15||10||Not valid|
|Froggle Bunwich||+20||+37.5||+5||15||Not valid|
|Fruit Medley||+20||+25||+5||6||Cold/5||Not valid|
|Honey Ham||+30||+75||+5||15||Hot/10||Not valid|
|Honey Nuggets||+20||+37.5||+5||15||Not valid|
|Ice Cream||0||+25||+50||3||Cold/15||Not valid|
(over 2 minutes)
|Jelly-O Pop||+20||+12.5||0||10||Cold/10||Not valid|
(only in )
|Lobster Bisque||+60||+25||+10||10||Not valid|
|Lobster Dinner||+60||+25||+50||10||Not valid|
|Mandrake Soup||+100||+150||+5||6||Not valid|
|Meaty Stew||+12||+150||+5||10||Hot/15||Not valid|
|Monster Lasagna||-20||+37.5||-20||10||Not valid|
|Monster Tartare||+3||+37.5||+10||10||Not valid|
|Mussel Bouillabaise||+20||+37.5||+15||10||Not valid|
|Pumpkin Cookies||0||+37.5||+15||10||Not valid|
|Seafood Gumbo||+40||+37.5||+20||20||Not valid|
|Shark Fin Soup||+40||+12.5||-10||10||Not valid|
|Spicy Chili||+20||+37.5||0||9||Hot/15||Not valid|
|Stuffed Eggplant||+3||+37.5||+5||15||Hot/5||Not valid|
|Surf 'n' Turf||+60||+37.5||+33||10||Not valid|
|Sweet Potato Souffle||+20||+37.5||+15||10||Not valid|
|Trail Mix||+30||+12.5||+5||15||Not valid|
|Tropical Bouillabaisse||+20||+37.5||+15||10||Not valid|
|Turkey Dinner||+20||+75||+5||6||Hot/10||Not valid|
|Wet Goop||0||0||0||6||Not valid|
Most Food has a Perish Time, eventually turning into Rot.
- Any kind of cooked meat lasts longer than any raw meat, but any kind of raw vegetable lasts longer than any cooked vegetable. The exceptions are Popcorn, which lasts longer than raw Corn; Mushrooms, which last the same amount of time whether cooked or raw; and Seaweed in Shipwrecked last longer when cooked.
- Food dropped on the ground or stored in Shadow Chester will perish at a rate of 1.5, while keeping it in the Ice Box will reduce the rate to 0.5. Additionally, during Winter and when world temperature is below 0°, the food base perish rate is multiplied by 0.75 instead of 1. I.e. during winter, when temperature is below 0°, food in the Ice Box will spoil at 0.5 × 0.75 = 0.375 rate. In Reign of Giants`s Summer and Shipwrecked`s Dry Season, the food spoils at the rate of 1.25.
- Soggy food spoils 30% faster.
- The stale and spoiled effects do not apply when eaten by WX-78.
- The effects of eating stale or spoiled food are worse when playing as Wickerbottom. Stale food will only give 1/3 of the hunger and 1/4 of health. Spoiled food will restore only 1/6 of the hunger. The rest of the values is the same as other characters.
- Cooking Food on fire or in Crock Pot halves the spoiled amount of the Food (e.g. if it were at 80% freshness when raw, it would change to 90% freshness after being cooked).
- Tallbird Eggs, Mandrakes (raw and cooked), the Deerclops Eyeball, Guardian's Horn, (Glommer's Goop ) and ("Ballphin Free" Tuna , which gives one Fish Steak when used) are the only Food items which don't spoil (despite Honey being the only food in real life that does not spoil).
- Food cooked in the Crock Pot and meat dried on the Drying Rack do not begin to spoil until picked up. This was changed in the Reign of Giants DLC.
- Spoiled Eggs become Rotten Eggs instead of Rot.
A food with a defined temperature effect will increase/decrease the player's perceived temperature by 40°, for varying lengths of time. This effect is not directly related to, or affected by the food's freshness.
Cold foods preserve their full effect until they rot.
Hot foods, however, will cool off over time (shortening the duration of the increased temperature effect, rather than decreasing in temperature) after being made (all hot foods are Crock Pot dishes). Hot foods will cool off four times as fast if put inside a functioning Ice Box. This cool-off increase will also happen inside Snow Chester. The Insulated Pack, Sea Sack, Chef Pouch and the Bundling Wrap will preserve the temperature effect indefinitely.
Splitting a stack of hot food will reset the temperature duration of the new stack, and combining stacks will set the duration to the same as the stack that is being added to.
An exception to the cooling-down effect of hot foods are several non-perishable food items available during Winter's Feast in Don't Starve Together. These foods will keep a long-lasting hot effect indefinitely, making them a great item to keep around static resurrection structures:
- In order to maximize the benefits of a food item, the time when to cook it can be broke down in 3, taking into account the difference of spoil rate of the Cooked version VS the Raw version: 1) Less than twice as long; 2) Twice as long; and 3) More than twice as long. 1) If it to take less than twice as long to spoil then it should be cooked as late as possible. 2) If it takes exactly twice as long, then it does not matter when it is cooked. 3) If more, it should be cooked as early as possible.
- When cooking sanity-restoring food, one should be wary of their freshness, as when they turn stale, they no longer restore sanity. Since most sanity-restoring food items require specific ingredients, it's recommended to consume them as soon as possible in order to benefit from the sanity gain without wasting expensive ingredients for small amounts of hunger and little to no health gains.