It is actually pretty easy to stave off hunger and thirst in this game, but that’s not really why you should be eating food. It’s all about the extra effects food gives you, including being one of the most efficient ways to restore health, stamina, and mana! This guide will help you get the most out of your found food ingredients without having to dedicate a lot of your time and money to cooking.
Other Outward Guides:
- Outward All Crafting Recipes
- Outward Debug Menu
- Outward Get the Biggest Backpack
- Outward All Factions
- Outward All Skill Tree
- Outward How to Make Money
- Outward Achievements Guide
- Outward Efficient Cooking Guide
Efficient Cooking Guide
Done right, in this game keeping hunger away should just be a convenient side-effect of the food you’re using for other things!
I’m not going to cover every thing you can cook here and what it does, especially rare and fancy meals. Instead, this guide is mostly focused on food that is relatively easy or cheap to get, particularly at the start of the game, and how efficient it is for what you need it for (healing, etc) compared to other options. It is intended for those that want to know what they should be doing with basic ingredients so as to not waste them, but aren’t necessarily interested in delving deep into the cooking system and discovering every fancy dish they can make.
Tips and Tricks
- You can cook single ingredients using any camp fire, but need a cooking pot or a kitchen to combine multiple ingredients.
- Your character does not need to know a recipe to cook it, if you yourself know. Just use the Manual Recipe feature. Once you’ve done it once your character will remember it. If you find any recipes you already personally know, you can sell them for cash instead of reading them!
- Food only decays while you are actively carrying it. Dropping it on the ground, leaving it in a pack that you aren’t wearing, or putting it in your stash keeps it from rotting.
- In any recipe that lists things like “any meat” or “any fish”, etc, then that also includes cooked items. So, there’s no need to haul around Raw Meat, for example – go ahead and cook it over a camp fire to keep it longer (or to eat in an emergency), and you can still use it in a recipe next time you have access to a kitchen or cooking pot.
- Food effects of the same type (health recovery, stamina recovery, etc) do not stack, and over-riding existing food effects seems inconsistent. Best to just wait until the previous effect wears off rather than trying to extend it by eating something that grants the same effect type. However, food DOES stack with things like Bandages, drinking Clean Water, and (probably) potions, and you can have different effect types from different food at the same time just fine (i.e. health regen from one food + stamina regen from another food simultaneously).
- Cooking an ingredient all by itself, such as over a camp fire with no cooking pot, will not change its positive effect, weight, or monetary value. It will just remove possible negative effects, reset its current decay, and the new cooked version will decay slower. If you don’t specifically need the raw version for a recipe later, might as well cook it (except for beetles and seaweed, which can’t be cooked by themselves).
Eating for Health Recovery
You gain health from protein sources like meat, fish, and eggs. Even the most basic food with health recovery heals significantly more than Bandages do, though not necessarily as fast.
Possible healing effects:
- Bandages: 0.50 health/second for 40 seconds (20 total health)
- Health Recovery 1: 0.20 health/second for 600 seconds (120 total health)
- Health Recovery 2: 0.25 health/second for 600 seconds (150 total health)
- Health Recovery 3: 0.30 health/second for 600 seconds (180 total health)
- Health Recovery 4: 0.40 health/second for 600 seconds (240 total health)
- Health Recovery 5: 0.50 health/second for 600 seconds (300 total health)
Cooked Meat – Any Meat
– Grants 150 food value and Health Recovery 2
– Raw Meat can be gained from killing animals like Pearlbirds and Hyenas. Just cooking it directly is an okay option when you are out exploring and need to heal with no cooking pot or other ingredients. Just find a random tree, get some wood, make a camp fire, and grill up that meat. A good idea to do anyway since any recipe that requires meat doesn’t care if it is raw or already cooked, and the cooked version lasts longer and can be eaten safely.
Meat Stew (3 servings) – Any Meat + Any Fruit/Vegetable + Salt
– Grants 275 food value and Health Recovery 3
– A very efficient healing food. If you just ate the (cooked) meat, you would get one dose of Health Recovery 2, but by combining it with a common Gaberry and Salt (which just requires boiling some sea water from your water skin), you get 3 doses of Health Recovery 3. That’s a total of 540 health compared to just 150 for the meat without the berry and salt!
Jerky (5 servings) – Any Meat x2 + Salt x2
– Grants 100 food value and Health Recovery 2
– Next best option for Raw Meat after Meat Stew. Salt is free and this way you get 5 portions instead of 2. As a bonus, Jerky also lasts a really long time.
Eating (and drinking) for Stamina Recovery
Stamina recovers on its own, but if you have a challenging fight ahead or want to sprint for longer than this effect can be helpful. Stamina recovery is granted by fruits, vegetables, eggs, and of course, water. Remember that the water effect stacks with stamina recovery effects from food, but the food versions lasts MUCH longer.
Possible stamina effects:
- Water Effect: Cures Burning, 0.3 stamina/second + 10 hot weather defense for 180 seconds
- Stamina Recovery 1: 0.4 stamina/second for 900 seconds
- Stamina Recovery 2: 0.6 stamina/second for 900 seconds
- Stamina Recovery 3: 0.8 stamina/second for 900 seconds
Gaberries (or Boiled Gaberries)
– Grants 75 food value and Stamina Recovery 1
– May not seem like much but it is still superior in rate and duration than drinking water, and stacks with it. Probably not worth cooking them unless they are about to rot, since the raw form is needed for making jam. However, you may want to stockpile some in your stash for use in Meat Stew and Gaberry Jam/Tartine (covered later).
Miner’s Omelette (3 servings) – Any Egg + Any Egg + Common Mushroom (raw)
– Grants 175 food value and Stamina Recovery 3 + Health Recovery 1
– If you really dig that stamina regen than this recipe is for you. Be warned, however, that there are potentially better uses for eggs (Pungent Paste) and Common Mushrooms (Poison Antidote via alchemy), depending on your needs.
Eating for Mana Recovery
You gain Mana primarily from seafood, so you’ll probably want to keep a Fishing Harpoon on you at all times if you use magic (the Harpoon still works even if it breaks, so don’t worry about repairing it).
Possible mana effects:
- Mana Recovery 1: 0.15 mana/second for 600 seconds (90 total mana)
- Mana Recovery 2: 0.2 mana/second for 600 seconds (120 total mana)
- Mana Recovery 3: 0.25 mana/second for 600 seconds (150 total mana)
Grilled Salmon – Raw Salmon
– Grants 125 food value, Health Recovery 1, and Mana Recovery 1
– Like Cooked Meat, okay in a pinch, and even if you don’t eat it now, it can still be used in other recipes later. However, it is probably better to save your fish for other recipes, and especially avoid grilling Rainbow Trout because you need the raw form for some special recipes.
Pot-au-Dey du Pirate (3 servings) – 3x Any Fish + Salt
– Grants 325! food value, Health Recovery 2, and Mana Recovery 3
– This adds a lot of value to your salmon. You used 3 fish (even already-grilled fish) and got 3 servings back, but each serving now grants significantly more health and mana! Avoid using Rainbow Trout for this though, and if you have Larva Eggs or other eggs like Bird Eggs available, you may want to use your fish for Ocean Fricassee or Pungent Paste instead.
Boiled Azure Shrimp – Azure Shrimp
– Grants 75 food value and Mana Recovery 3
– Azure Shrimp are fairly rare and valuable (sell for 9 silver), and can also be used for Luxe Lichette instead if you value Health and Stamina regen over Mana regen (keep them in raw form if you don’t plan to eat them directly though).
Eating for Warmth
These recipes grant the following effect:
- Cold Weather Def Up: +15 Cold Weather Defense for 240 seconds
Warmth (cold weather) recipes:
Gaberry Jam – Gaberries x 4
– Grants 150 food value and Stamina Recovery 2 + Cold Weather Def Up
– Gaberries are plentiful but there are other uses for them, like eating directly or making Meat Stew, so sacrificing 4 may be a bit much for just a little extra stamina regen and this effect. However…
Gaberry Tartine (3 servings) – Any Bread, Gaberry Jam
– Grants 125 food value and Stamina Recovery 2 + Cold Weather Def Up
– Essentially the same as Gaberry Jam, but you get 3 portions by spreading it on some bread, thus getting much more out of those 4 Gaberries you initially used. Consider, though, that there may be other recipes for bread later in the game and, though it is cheap at only 1 silver, merchants do not have it in infinite supply (AFAIK) and you can’t cook bread yourself.
Bitter Spicy Tea – Water + Ochre Spice Beetle
– Cures Infection, restores 15 Burnt Stamina, and grants Cold Weather Defense Up
– A really great item for its many effects, including curing Infection which is easy to contract and deadly. However, Pungent Paste is a better use of the Ochre Spice Beetle if you aren’t dealing with cold weather.
Eating for Burnt Stat Recovery
When you use stamina your max stamina is reduced, which the game refers to as “burnt” stamina. The same applies to max health when you take damage. Both are restored naturally by sleeping. Mana works in the opposite way, increasing the max when you use it and being burnt when you sleep. These foods can be used as an alternate means to restore burnt stats, especially for heavy users of Mana which have difficulty keeping all stats at max due to Mana working in reverse.
Burnt stat recipes:
Pungent Paste – Any Egg + Any Fish + Ochre Spice Beetle
– Cures Infection and restores 20 Burnt Health & Stamina (plus 125 food value)
– Arguably the best use for both eggs and Ochre Spice Beetles, it is a good idea to keep one of these on you for the Infection cure alone. It is also a boon to mages trying to stay awake to keep their mana high (you even gain a mana regeneration buff from lack of sleep!), but even non-mages can find it helpful to go just a bit longer without needing to stop to sleep.
Soothing Tea – Water + Seaweed
– Cures a Cold (eventually) plus restores some Burnt Mana
– I’m guessing it is 15 Mana restored since that’s how the other teas work, but I haven’t confirmed this. This could be used as an alternate to Pungent Paste for a mage that wants to sleep regularly but keep their max mana high. Seaweed is not exactly rare, per se, but it does have multiple uses for a mage so think about what best to do with it.
Mineral Tea – Water + Gravel Beetle
-Cures Indigestion (eventually), restores 15 Burnt Health and grants Impact Resistance Up
– Sounds good and all but I actually think this is a waste of a Gravel Beetle, which is used to make Life Potions with alchemy. Plus, if you are cooking properly and boiling un-clean water, you’ll never need to cure indigestion. Impact Resistance Up gives +25% for 240 seconds.
Dry Mushroom Bar (5 servings) – 4x Common Mushroom (raw)
– Restores 5 Burnt Health (plus 100 food value)
– Although it is nice you get 5 servings, and Common Mushrooms are, well, common, they are also used in alchemy for Poison Antidote and to make Miner’s Omelette. In general, all mushroom types should be saved for alchemy recipes primarily in my opinion, but if you have a bunch to spare or are deep in a cave and low on max health, here’s an option for you.
Gourmet Dishes (regen multiple stats)
These recipes can be somewhat questionable in their value, as they often need rare ingredients and you don’t always need to restore multiple stats at once, but if you happen to have those ingredients on hand it may be worth it for the all-in-one solution.
Cierzo Ceviche (3 servings) – Raw Rainbow Trout + Seaweed + Salt
– Grants 200 food value, Health Recovery 3, Mana Recovery 2, and Elemental Resistance
– This impressive food has multiple useful effects, but unfortunately Rainbow Trout is much less common than Salmon from fishing spots and costs 15 silver to buy directly. Seaweed is relatively easy to get but is also useful in lots of ways, including making Ice Rags, so you might need to comb beaches often for it. Elemental Resistance adds 25% resistance to all elements for 240 seconds, as well.
Cooked Larva Egg – Larva Egg
– Grants 75 food value, Health Recovery 2, and Stamina Recovery 2
– If you get some Larva Eggs (they drop from those lightning shrimp monsters on the beach but also as rare drops from fishing) you may be better off turning them into Ocean Fricassee or Luxe Lichette instead.
Ocean Fricassee (3 servings) – Larva Egg (raw) + Any Fish + Seaweed
– Grants 275 food value, Health Recover 2, Stamina Recovery 3, and Mana Recovery 2
– Only food in this guide that restores all 3 stats, but again, Larva Eggs are rare (or require a dangerous fight) and you may prefer to use them for Luxe Lichette instead if you don’t need the mana regen. Note that a chef in the starting town will give you 3 of these in exchange for 1 Cierzo Ceviche as a quest, which renews every few days or so.
Luxe Lichette (3 servings) – Azure Shrimp (raw) + Raw Rainbow Trout + Larva Egg (raw) + Seaweed
– Grants 300! food value, Health Recovery 5!, and Stamina Recovery 3
– Every ingredient of this gourmet dish is fairly valuable, but this does grant the fastest health recovery AND stamina recovery of all the foods I’ve found so far in one go. At least you get 3 servings of it for the price…
You need these to travel to other regions.
Travel Ration (1 to 3 servings, depending) – Any “Ration Ingredient” x 2 + Salt
– Grants 150 food value and allows travel
– Worth mentioning that you get 3 servings if you prepare this in a kitchen or cooking pot, but only 1 if you make it with Survival Crafting directly. These also keep a long time. Otherwise, they are only good for staving off hunger, but so is the food you sacrificed to make them, so best to only use them for what they are made for. Note also that not all foods are valid ingredients – it seems to be limited to food that you can sell (so not Gaberries, for instance).
Cooking for Cash
If your need for silver outweighs your need for useful food and you intend to sell the ingredients, in most cases cooking recipes with those ingredients will net you more profit than selling the ingredients directly. The exception I’ve found is recipes that involve beetles, which sell for less than if you just sold the beetles directly.
Azure Shrimp (9s) + Raw Rainbow Trout (4s) + Larva Egg (4s) + Seaweed (1s) = 18s
Result: Luxe Lichette (9s) x 3, 27s total or 9s (1.5x) profit
Bird Egg (1s) + Bird Egg (1s) + Common Mushroom (0s) = 2s
Result: Miner’s Omelette (1s) x 3, 3s total or 1s (1.5x) profit
Bread (0s) + Graberry Jam (2s) = 2s
Result: Gaberry Tartine (2s) x 3, 6s total or 4s (3x) profit
Common Mushroom (0s) x4 = 0s
Result: Dry Mushroom Bar (1s) x 5, 5s total/profit
Gaberries (0s) x 4 = 0s
Result: Gaberry Jam (2s), 2s total/profit
Larva Egg (4s) + Raw Salmon (1s) + Seaweed (1s) = 6s
Result: Ocean Fricassee (4s) x 3, 12s total or 6s (2x) profit
Raw Salmon (1s) x 3 + Salt (0s) = 3s
Result: Pot-au-Dey du Pirate (2s) x 3, 6s total or 3s (2x) profit
Raw Rainbow Trout (4s) + Seaweed (1s) + Salt (0s) = 5s
Result: Cierzo Ceviche (4s) x3, 12s total or 7s (2.4x) profit
Water (0s) + Seaweed (1s) = 1s
Result: Soothing Tea (2s), 2s total or 1s (2x) profit