In Caves of Qud, the player has the option of gathering fresh foods, preserving them to create cooking ingredients and cooking meals to obtain temporary bonuses for their character. The following is a summary of the cooking and gathering system, composed of an edited version of the patch notes from the update where the latest iteration of the system was introduced. If you're looking for the requirements of the Cooking and Gathering skill tree, look under the Skills page.

Cooking 101 Edit

The Cooking and Gathering skill lets you do more sophisticated cooking. that simply gathering nearby food from your surrounding.

  • If you have Cooking and Gathering, you get three new options in the campfire/oven menu: cook with ingredients, cook from a recipe, and preserve foods.
  • Whip up a Meal: Starting skill known by every player character in wayfaring skill tree
    • Uses random parts collected from your surrounding
    • Rarely, the meal you whip up is especially tasty and grants you a small bonus for the rest of the day.
    • Sometimes it appear as if you used a special ingredient in your whipped meal, but it doesn't actually gives special effect, rather serves as a literal flavor text.
  • Cook with ingredients: Basic Skill for cooking, Mayor Nuntu in Kyakukya can teach you this skill
    • You can cook with up to two ingredients (three if you have the Spicer skill power).
    • Cooking a meal with ingredients bestows a dynamically-generated effect for the rest of the day.
      • Some liquids also work as cooking ingredients, and some foods can be cooked fresh. All body parts Dismembered from non-robots can be cooked and give HP-boosting effects (like jerky).
      • Two compatible effects may combine into a different effect. For example, Starapple Jam (+regen) and Bear Jerky (+hp) may instead give a chance to heal to full when taking damage.
      • Identical effect types do not stack - combining 3 jerky types will only result in one +hp effect that will not be any stronger than if only one jerky was used.
    • Rarely, the food you cook becomes especially tasty and grants you a small bonus for the rest of the day.
      • Cooking with salt increases the chance for this bonus to appear
      • Can only happen when hungry
    • The final Cooking and Gathering skill power is Carbide Chef.
      • With Carbide Chef, whenever you gain a level or 5% of the time you explore a new map, you become inspired to cook a meal (lasts for two days).
      • While inspired, the next time you cook a meal by choosing ingredients, you get a choice of three dynamically-generated effects to apply.
      • You will also save the recipe for the chosen effect.
    • Details on rule of cooking is explained in this page here
  • Cook from a recipe: Cooking a meal from a recipe bestows a particular effect.
  • Preserve Your Fresh Foods:
    • There are a large number of cooking ingredients. In general, you create them by harvesting and butchering food, then preserving it at a campfire.
      • Preserved food are weightless so you can carry as many as you wish
    • Svenlainard and Six-Day Stilt merchants occasionally sells preserved food, some may also sell recipe books
  • Preserve Your Exotic Foods:
    • This is for making some special food, tonics, and crafting material into a cook-able ingredient. So you wouldn't accidentally lose important item
      • Preserved exotic ingredient will lose their usability in-combat but would adopt the property of the preserved item when you cook with it
    • The effects of the exotic foods provided in the other hand always have a fresh ingredient alternative

Harvesting & Butchery Edit

Harvesting or butchering cooking ingredients requires the Harvestry and Butchery skill powers, respectively. They can be unlocked under the Cooking and Gathering skill tree.

  • Both are toggleable passive powers that automatically harvest or butcher suitable plants and corpses.
  • Plants, meat, and organs you harvest and butcher can be preserved at campfires and turned into cooking ingredients.
  • Ripe plants appear as a different color than their non-ripe counterparts.
  • Ripe plants appear on the alt overlay if you have the Harvestry skill.
  • Additionally, harvesting or butchering can give rare and functional items specific to a particular plants or monsters.

Eating & Satiation Edit

  • After a day without eating, you become hungry (no penalty). After another day without eating, you become famished (-10 Quickness).
  • The primary way to sate hunger is to cook at a campfire. You can interact with campfires with the use key.
    • As long as you aren't in combat, you can make camp (see your abilities screen). This starts a campfire.
    • You can whip up a basic meal at a campfire. This costs no resources and sates your hunger, even if you're famished.
  • You can eat up to three times before you are too full to eat, but only the first meal has the chance to be tasty.
    • However you only need to eat once to fill yourself up
    • This three-meal cap is relevant for the Cooking and Gathering skill, described above.
  • You can eat food out of your inventory to supplement campfire cooking.
    • Most foods are snacks, which sate a few hours of hunger.
    • Corpses count as full meals, but you can no longer bring yourself to eat them unless you're famished (or a carnivore...).
    • If you eat corpses or raw meat, your hunger is sated, but you become ill for 12 hours (unless you have the Carnivorous mutation).
  • Hunger status is ignored while traveling on the world map, as we assume you're cooking meals along the way.
  • However, if you travel more than one world map tile, you'll be hungry when you come back down to a local map.
  • Each village has an oven where you can cook food or eat its signature dish for free.
  • Carnivorous mutation allows you to eat corpses, dismembered parts, and butchered meat raw without getting sick.
    • Carnivores don't need to be famished to eat meat.
    • Raw meat and meals cooked with meat are especially tasty to carnivores (increased chance for small bonus).
    • Carnivores get no satiation from non-meat foods and may get ill from eating them.
    • Carnivores can't cook with plant ingredients.
  • Photosynthetic Skin mutation alternatively allow you to satiate yourself by basking yourself in the sun
    • Aside from regeneration and quickness buff, You will grow your own handmade food that you can use when cooking as a recipe or to be used as a travelling snacks
      • This works similarly to Glowcrust fungal infection which also makes you grow food passively


The list of ingredients below is not complete; there are also procedural ingredients not on the list. Each effect-type can have multiple different effects when cooking. More details on what each type of effect can do can be found under Cooking Recipes.

In addition to the locations and tips noted below, the vast majority of ingredients can be purchased at the Six-Day Stilt.

Name Source Effect Types
Acid Golgotha, Bethesda Susa, or fighting Spitting Slugs. Can't be stored safely in a waterskin. acid (minor)
Asphalt Asphalt Mines, among other places stability (minor)
Cider Various, frequently sold at the Six-Day Stilt quickness (minor)
Cloning Draught Very rare; can be purchased from the Alchemist. cloning (minor)
Convalessence Bethesda Susa cold (minor), regen (low-tier)
Green Goo Golgotha self-poison
Honey Various, frequently sold at the Six-Day Stilt medicinal (minor)
Lava Found deep in the Asphalt Mines or produced by melting stone walls. Can't be stored safely in a waterskin or canteen. heat (minor)
Neutron Flux Extremely rare; can be purchased from the Alchemist. density
Black Ooze Golgotha self-Glotrot
Salt Pour brackish water on the ground, then pick it back up. tasty (minor)
Slime Kill a Giant Amoeba, or use the Slime Glands mutation. slime spitting
Brown Sludge Golgotha self-poison
Fermented Yuckwheat Stem Yuckwheat Stem medicinal
Fire Ant Gaster Paste Fire Ant Gaster heat
Pickled Mushrooms Smoldered Mushroom, Plump Mushroom fungus
Jerky Meat produced by Butchery; each one produces a separate type. HP
Dried Vanta Petals Vanta Petals, harvested from a Vantabloom or Vantabud darkness
Sun-Dried Banana Ripe Banana, harvested from a Banana Tree artifacts
Spark Tick Plasma Spark Tick Scutum, from a Spark Tick electric
Congealed Shade Oil Shade Oil Injector phase
Phase Silk Collected from the web of a Phase Spider or webs produced by the Spinnerets mutation while phased, using Harvestry. phase
Mashed Lag Lagroot Tuber willpower
Canned Have-It-All Canned Have-It-All random
Limbs Any severed limb; sever with Dismember or with the serrated item mod. HP
Mirror Dust Mirror Shards, harvested (not butchered) from the corpse of a Quartziferous Mirror. reflect (high-tier)
Starch Produced by the Photosynthetic Skin mutation. regen (special, Photosynthetic Skin version)
Lignin Produced by the Photosynthetic Skin mutation. quickness (special, Photosynthetic Skin version)
Vinewafer Sheaf Vinewafer thirst
Spine Fruit Jam Spine Fruit reflect
Cured Dawnglider Tail Dawnglider Tail heat
Starapple Preserves Starapple regen (low-tier)
Congealed Blaze Blaze Injector heat
Dried Lah Petals Lah Petals, found around Bey Lah fear
Congealed Salve Salve Injector regen (low-tier)
Pickles Ripe Cucumber thirst
Fermented Yondercane Yondercane teleport
Freeze-Dried Hoarshrooms Hoarshroom, harvested from a Luminous Hoarshroom cold, fungus
Voider Gland Paste Voider Gland teleport
Psychal Gland Paste Psychal Gland, harvested from a Memory Eater secrets
Breather Gland Paste Breather Glands, harvested from various Breathers breath (minor)
Concentrated Breather Gland Paste Elder Breather Glands, harvested from Elder Breathers breath (powerful)

Bugs and exploits Edit

  • When selecting recipe effects with Carbide Chef skill, it is possible to cancel the cooking with Escape key. This can be used to reroll the effects, for example to get desired rare effects from Canned Have-It-All.
  • Liquid ingredients are usable for their full effect even when heavily diluted. Usable with Cloning Draught.

Trivia Edit

Mechanics t
Gameplay Mechanics Achievements - Character Creation(Calling - Arcologies) - Cooking and Gathering - Cooking Recipes - Desecration - Dismemberment - Journal - Faction Hero - Psychic Glimmer- Psychic Assassin - Modification - Relic - Scrap & Bits - Tinkering - Trade - Water Ritual - Reputation - Wish/Cheats - World Map
Character Mechanics Attributes - Quickness - Move Speed - AV - DV - Mental Armor - Hitpoints - Experience - Temperature - Skills - Mutation - Cybernetics - Mutants - True Kin
Major Categories Artifacts - Armor & Equipment - Weapons - Monsters - Factions - Locations - Quests
Elemental Damage > Acid - Electrical - Cold - Heat - Astral - EMP - Explosive - Light - Mental - Vibration
Status Effects > Astrally Burdened - Astrally Tethered - Bleeding - Confused - Dazed - Fates Have Their Way - Fear - Flaming - Frozen - Ill - Itchy Skin - Lovesick - Paralyzed - Phased - Poison - Prone - Sleep - Slipped - Sprinting - Stuck - Stunned
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