Back in the first days of survival mode in Minecraft, food was just there to recover health.
There was no hunger level of any kind, making it a huge request by the Minecraft community.
In the adventure update of 2011, hunger was added, as well as a few other things.
Since then, farming has become a staple of any survival world.
Even if you spend a lot of time dedicated to producing crops, it can be tough to get a real grasp of your resources. Long adventures are particularly tough, running out of food is a nightmare.
Are you focusing your efforts on the best food items?
You might only be focusing on how much food level your item restores, rather than considering the saturation level which is just as important!
Do you understand the difference between food level and saturation?
This is important. If you’re having trouble keeping your food bar topped up, saturation is likely the culprit.
Saturation is a hidden value, eating more saturated foods will deplete your hunger level slower.
Eating a variety of foods in a specific order can further increase efficiency.
I’ll be going through all this in each entry!
While bread should certainly be made whenever you have spare wheat, providing good food & saturation levels, your wheat is far better being used for different means.
Wheat is best used for breeding cows, healing horses & creating hay bales.
It can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours (real life time) for a wheat crop to fully grow, then it’ll yield 1 wheat.
So you’ll need a huge farm to get masses of bread, and that’s something that takes time to create and manage.
Overall, there are better food options available.
9. Golden Apple
While you’re out adventuring, exploring caves and tackling mobs, the Golden Apple is one of the best food items you can get.
Although it doesn’t restore that much hunger, at a measly 2 food levels, effectiveness comes in different ways. It’ll instead heal up to 2 hearts over a few seconds, as well as providing 2 absorption levels.
More uses come in the form of curing zombie villagers. If you hit them with a Splash Potion of Weakness, you can use a Golden Apple on them to turn them into a normal villager.
Also useful for breeding horses.
8. Dandelion/Blue Orchid Suspicious Stew
Saturation: 7.2 (+ bonus saturation from Dandelion or Blue Orchid)
Mushroom Stew is another great food item, easily available as mushrooms are quite common in caves and biomes. However, you can add any flower to the crafting recipe of mushroom stew, to make a suspicious stew. Adding a Dandelion or Blue Orchid adds extra saturation, keeping you full for longer. You can see the full list on the wiki.
7. Cooked Cod
Providing some decent food stats, cod is relatively easy to get en masse via fishing or fish traps.
If you’re close to ocean blocks, you can build around 4 or so pieces of water, and underneath, to have plenty of fish spawn inside. The simply murder them every few in-game days for a ton of fish to cook!
6. Cooked Chicken
Chickens are a hugely common, easily breed-able animal mob that provides meat, eggs, and feathers.
Requiring only seeds to breed as well, every player should have a bunch of chickens.
While cooked chicken is a decent food item, the amount of chickens you need to slaughter is a hassle and not worth it, compared to other meats and food items you can obtain.
Plus, you have to deal with the constant clucking which, of all animal mobs, is the most annoying. As well as them escaping every time you enter their pen.
5. Cooked Mutton
Sheep drop 1-2 raw mutton chops, making it one of the more common food items you can stock up on. Found all across most biomes, Sheep are easy to find and breed. Every survival play-through needs some space dedicated to animal keeping.
A little tip if you didn’t already know, if a Sheep burns to death, it’ll drop cooked mutton instead!
Finding herds of cows is not uncommon, they’ll provide a great source of beef and other useful items. Able to drop between 1-3 raw beef upon death, or steak (cooked beef) if they burn to death. You can also feed steak to wolves if needed, to make them mate or grow up faster.
Filling up 4 food levels by itself is pretty awesome, especially combined with the high saturation level.
3. Cooked Porkchop
Completely identical to the previous entry in terms of stats, cooked porkchops are another good food item. I put it higher because it’s slightly more efficient to get, requiring carrots to breed pigs, rather than wheat (which is a useful item itself) for cows.
2. Cooked Salmon
Craft yourself a fishing rod and head to some water for 20 minutes, you’ll get a decent supply of fish. Salmon is the best overall, filling 3 hunger levels and providing some decent saturation. There’s a 25% chance you’ll find salmon while fishing, which is a relaxing exercise you can do to take a break from cave exploring!
1. Baked Potato
Once you’ve acquired your first potato, you’ll be fine for food for the rest of your play-through. Zombies, and their respective variants, have a 0.83% chance of dropping a potato.
So why are potatoes so good?
Food/saturation levels aren’t the best but once you plant a potato, it’ll yield 2-5 more within an hour (real-time).
Other potato uses are for breeding pigs, or trading to the amazing farmer villagers for Emeralds.
No other food item is as easy to get as baked potatoes, you can acquire stack after stack from just a few hours of game-play!