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Pokémon Sword and Shield: Cooking guide

Pokémon Sword and Shield's Camping feature allows you to make a wide variety of Curries that can increase your Pokémon's friendship, restore your Pokémon's HP and PP, grant Exp. and items, and even encourage your Pokémon to lure in wild Pokémon to catch. While it isn't critical to use this feature to beat the game, it definitely has its rewards and is a lot of fun! However, with 151 different Curries to make and five different taste ratings, it may seem a little overwhelming at first. Fortunately, we're here to walk you through everything you need to know about this new Pokémon feature.

Solo or with a friend?

Pokemon Sword and Shield cooking with a friend

There are two methods to cooking curry in Pokémon Sword and Shield: you can set up camp and cook alone, or you can cook with a friend in either your camp or theirs. While the former gives you more control over your curry, the latter lets you socialize with other player's and their Pokémon, as well as collborate on the dish. It's a little more challenging to cook with someone else but for the rarer ingredients, it means sharing the results and making them go that much further. Because the host gets to choose the Main Ingredient, this can also be a means of cooking the Sword and Shield exclusive dishes without having to set up a trade to get the Main Ingredient from the other version of the game.

If you plan on cooking solo, just set up camp and get started. If you want to cook with someone else, you can either invite a friend to join you in your camp or you can find someone else's camp and ask them to cook. Anytime you've set up camp, you can start cooking but only the host can begin cooking when you're visiting other players. You will also gain more Experience when cooking with other players. While you can only bring one Pokémon when you visit someone else's camp, if you're hosting and working well together, you can get a tremendous amount of Experience for your whole team.

The Mechanics of cooking

The actual cooking process consists of four basic steps. The first is choosing your ingredients. This is pretty straight forward. Just select a Main Ingredient (or none at all for a Plain Curry) and up to ten Berries.

While the different Main Ingredients and Berries you choose determine what Curry you make and how effective it is at raising your Friendship level, the mechanics of cooking determine how tasty your dish is and thus how effective it is at everything else. If you get really good at this mini game, you can earn a ton of Exp., restore all your Pokémon's HP and PP, heal their status conditions, and make them very sociable, so it's definitely worth the time to practice. However, you can fill your Curry Dex without getting the highest class so don't stress over it too much if you don't have a perfect score in every type of Curry.

Fanning the flames

Pokemon Sword and Shield cooking fanning the flame

Pokemon Sword and Shield cooking fanning the flame (Image credit: iMore/ Casian Holly)

Once you've put all your ingredients into the pot, you're given a fan to encourage your campfire along. Then, by either pressing A or motioning the Joy-Con in a fanning motion, you Fan the Flame. How rapidly you press A or motion your Joy-Con determines how big the flame gets and thus how well cooked your Curry will be. While some players can just eye the flame to tell when it's at the right size, you can also watch the top of the pot for sparkles. The more sparkles you see coming out of your Curry, the better you're doing. However, don't just mash that button as fast as you can! If your flame gets too big, you will burn your Curry!

There are five levels of heat for your cooking:

  • No Flame - this is the base level for any Curry you make with no increase to its Tastiness Level.
  • Low Flame - this gives a small increase to your Curry's Tastiness Level.
  • Medium Flame - this gives a moderate increase to your Curry's Tastiness Level.
  • High Flame - this gives your Curry the biggest possible increase to your Tastiness Level.
  • Too High Flame - this is burning your Curry. While it's better than No Flame, it's only a tiny increase to your Tastiness Level.

Stirring the pot

Pokemon Sword and Shield stirring the curry pot

Once you've finished Fanning the Flame, it's time to Stir the Pot, which also has five levels based on speed. To Stir the Pot, just spin the joystick on either Joy-Con. There will also be sparkles coming out of your Curry the better you stir but the Joy-Con will also vibrate to let you know if you're stirring too fast and spilling your Curry.

  • No Stirring - if you don't stir your Curry, it will burn, thus giving you the base Level of Tastiness.
  • Little Stirring - stirring just a small amount increases your Curry's Tastiness Level by a small amount.
  • Moderate Stirring - stirring a moderate speed gives your Curry a medium boost to its Tastiness Level.
  • Perfect Stirring - stirring fast gives your Curry a large boost to its Tastiness Level.
  • Spilling - if you stir too much, your Curry ends up spilling and you end up with only a small increase to your Tastiness Level.

Putting some love into it!

Pokemon Sword and Shield cooking with love

The last step in making a good Curry (or any dish for that matter) is to put a little love into it! As cheesy as that sounds, it's really important to cooking in Pokémon Sword and Shield. For this step, you will be given a single chance to throw a Heart through a Target Ring, similar to the Target Rings from Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu and Let's Go Eevee, as well as in Pokémon Go. Your goal is to hit the Target Ring when it's overlapping the innermost green circle but remember, the Target Ring keeps shrinking even after you throw your Heart, so timing is key!

Tastiness Level

Pokemon Sword and Shield Cooking Curry Gigantimax Curry

Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Dex (Image credit: iMore/ Casian Holly)

Once you've mastered each of these three mechanics, you'll be cooking top class Curries, but what does that mean anyway? Well, the Tastiness Level of a Curry determines the benefits your Pokémon receive from eating it. There are five different Tastiness Levels which can have five different effects on your Pokémon. They can increase your Pokémon's Experience, which will helps your Pokémon level up faster. They can restore your Pokémon's HP and PP, preparing them to go back into battle. They can heal your Pokémon's status conditions, if they've been poisoned or paralyzed in a fight. But most importantly, they can increase your Pokémon's Sociability. The more Social your Pokémon are feeling, the more likely they are to play together, to bring you items, and even bring in Wild Pokémon to the camp that you can in turn attempt to catch.

The five Tastiness Levels are:

  • Koffing Class: the lowest Tastiness Level you can get, this gives a very small amount of Experience, restores half of your Pokémon's HP, and gives your Pokémon a very small boost to their Sociability.
  • Wobbuffet Class: the next step up, this gives a small amount of Experience, restores 1/2 of your Pokémon's HP, and gives a small boost to their Sociability.
  • Milcery Class: the middle ground, this gives a moderate amount of Experience, restores all of your Pokémon's HP, heals all their status conditions, and gives a moderate boost to their Sociability.
  • Copperajah Class: just about as good as you can get, this grants a large amount of Experience, restores all of your Pokémon's HP, restores all of their PP, heals all their status conditions, and grants a large boost to Sociability.
  • Charizard Class: absolutely perfect, this grants your Pokémon a massive amount of Experience, restores all of their HP and PP, heals all their status conditions and gives them a massive boost to Sociability.

What makes the dish?

While the mechanics of cooking will determine a Curry's Tastiness Level, depending on what ingredients you use, you will get wildly different results. You can choose one Main Ingredient (or skip it for a Plain Curry) and that will determine the type of Curry you make. This is important for your Curry Dex but what is most important are the Berries you add next. The Berries determine the flavor of the Curry, as well as how much your Pokémon's Friendship Level increases. The rarer the Berries you use, the bigger the increase to your Pokémon's Friendship Level.

Main Ingredients

Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Main Ingredients

Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Main Ingredients (Image credit: iMore/ Casian Holly)

Most Main Ingredients can be found from the Ingredients Sellers in the Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke sections of the Wild Area, but you can also get them from Camping, from talking to other players in the Wild Areas, and even from doing well in Poké Jobs. Each Main Ingredient makes a different type of Curry, all but one of which have five flavors based on the Berries you use. If you don't use a Main Ingredient, you will have a Plain Curry, and the Gigantamax Curry doesn't have flavor variations, no matter what Berries you use.

Main IngredientRarityCurryLocations
NoneN/APlain CurryN/A
BreadOne StarToast CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Completing Poké Jobs
PastaOne StarPasta CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Fried FoodOne StarFried-Food CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Instant NoodlesOne StarInstant-Noodle CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Precooked BurgerOne StarBurger-Steak CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
SausagesTwo StarSausage CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Completing Poké Jobs
Tin of BeansTwo StarBean Medley CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Mixed MushroomsTwo StarMushroom Medley CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Pack of PotatoesTwo StarPlenty-of-Potato CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Salad MixTwo StarSalad CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Spice MixTwo StarSeasoned CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Other players in Wild Areas
Bob's Food TinThree StarJuicy CurrySword Only
Ingredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Trading
Bach's Food TinThree StarRich CurryShield Only
Ingredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Trading
Brittle BonesThree StarBone CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Pungent RootThree StarHerb Medley CurryHidden Item in the Wild Area (especially around water)
Camping
Fresh CreamThree StarWhipped Cream CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Packaged CurryThree StarDecorative CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Completing Poké Jobs
Coconut MilkThree StarCoconut CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlocke
Camping
Smoke-Poké TailFour StarSmoked-Tail CurryIngredients Seller in Hammerlocke
Camping
Large LeekFour StarLeek CurryHidden Item in the Wild Area
Camping
Fancy AppleFour StarApple CurryHidden Item in the Wild Area (especially around trees)
Camping
Boiled EggFour StarBoiled-Egg CurryIngredients Seller in Hammerlocke
Camping
Fruit BunchFour StarTropical CurryIngredients Seller in Hammerlocke
Camping
Moomoo CheeseFour StarCheese-Covered CurryIngredients Seller in Rolling Fields and Hammerlock
Camping
Completing Poké Jobs
GigantamixFive StarGigantamax CurryDefeating Three, Four, and Five star Raids

Note: While all but two of the Ingredients can be found in both Sword and Shield, some Ingredients are much more hard to come by. All of the Ingredients can be traded by trading a Pokémon holding the Ingredient. Bob and Bach's Food Tin's are exclusive to Sword and Shield respectively so if you're aiming to complete your Curry Dex, you will need to trade with a player on the other version of the game.

Berries

Pokemon Sword and Shield Cooking with Berries

Pokemon Sword and Shield Cooking with Berries (Image credit: iMore/ Casian Holly)

Most Berries can be found by shaking Berry Trees found all throughout the Wild Area, but you can also get them other ways, including the Battle Tower and from Distribution Events. Each Berry has a Flavor Profile made up of points in any of five categories: Spicy, Dry, Sweet, Bitter, and Sour. With a little math, you can always tell which of the five Flavors will dominate your dish. Berries also come in three rarities: Common, Uncommon, and Rare. The rarer the Berries, the bigger the boost you get to your Pokémon's Friendship Level.

BerryRaritySpicyDrySweetBitterSour
Cheri BerryCommon1--------
Chesto BerryCommon--1------
Pecha BerryCommon----1----
Rawst BerryCommon------1--
Aspear BerryCommon--------1
Leppa BerryCommon1--111
Oran BerryCommon11--11
Persmi BerryCommon111--1
Lum BerryCommon1111--
Sitrus BerryCommon--1111
Figy BerryCommon2--------
Wiki BerryCommon--2------
Mago BerryCommon----2----
Aquav BerryCommon------2--
Iapapa BerryCommon--------2
Pomeg BerryCommon1--11--
Kelpsy BerryCommon--1--11
Qualot BerryCommon1--1--1
Hondew BerryCommon11--1--
Grepa BerryCommon--11--1
Tamato BerryCommon31------
Occa BerryUncommon2--1----
Passho BerryUncommon--2--1--
Wacan BerryUncommon----2--1
Rindo BerryUncommon1----2--
Yache BerryUncommon---1----2
Chople BerryUncommon2----1--
Kebia BerryUncommon--2----1
Shuca BerryUncommon1--2----
Coba BerryUncommon--1--2--
Payapa BerryUncommon----1--2
Tanga BerryUncommon3------1
Charti BerryUncommon13------
Kasib BerryUncommon--13----
Hanban BerryUncommon----13--
Colbur BerryUncommon------13
Babiri BerryUncommon41------
Chilan BerryUncommon--41----
Liechi BerryUncommon515----
Ganlon BerryUncommon--515--
Salac BerryUncommon----515
Petaya BerryUncommon5----51
Apicot BerryUncommon15----5
Roseli BerryUncommon----41--
Kee BerryUncommon55111
Maranga BerryUncommon11551
Lansat BerryRare (Battle Tower Only)51515
Starf BerryRare (Battle Tower Only)51515
Enigma BerryRare (Distribution Only)61------
Micle BerryRare (Distribution Only)--61----
Custap BerryRare (Distribution Only)----61--
Jaboca BerryRare (Distribution Only)------61
Rowap BerryRare (Distribution Only)1------6

Cooking Questions?

Do you have any questions about cooking with your Pokémon in Sword and Shield? Got any tips for fellow Curry Chefs? Drop us a comment below and be sure to check out our many other Pokémon Sword and Shield guides!

Casian Holly has been writing about gaming at iMore since 2019, but their real passion is Pokémon. From the games to the anime, cards and toys, they eat, sleep, and breathe all things Pokémon. You can check out their many Pokémon Go and Pokémon Sword and Shield guides and coverage here on iMore.