Pokemon Sword and Shield has a ton of new and updated mechanics, but one of the more obscure activities players can do in their game is cooking. Taking a small page out of Breath of the Wild, Game Freak incorporated a whole new mini-game with cooking curry in Sword and Shield. While it's not as in-depth as Link's forays into foraging, cooking curry for your Pokemon can be a rewarding process that does provide some benefits. So this Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Guide will show you how the recipes and mini-game work.
If you're enjoying this coverage, check out our Sword and Shield game page, which features all of our other articles on the game. You should also consider reading our review of Pokemon Scarlet & Violet, the latest main game in the series.
Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Guide - The Benefits of a Balanced Breakfast
Curry cooking is a mini-game mechanic that can only be done when players camp with their Pokemon. The camp mechanic is the upgraded version of Pokemon Amie, where your team can roam around a small area while you play with them. Camping is a nice little distraction, but there are plenty of benefits for playing with your Pokemon, ranging from raising their affection levels to generating experience points.
Because of the relative difficulty of the Wild Area, cooking takes the place of Pokecenters, as cooking any dish will heal your fainted Pokémon, as well as heal the party with various degrees of success. Depending on how well you cook, you can heal all of your HP, as well as restore PP for depleted moves, plus gain experience and happiness for your Pokemon in the process. There is honestly no downside to cooking; if you need to revive some members of your team, stopping to camp is a quick way to go about it.
Cooking is also a multiplayer mini-game where every player works together to create a special dish for their Pokémon. The camping mechanic allows up to three players to join you on your campout, and their inclusion in curry cooking can help you achieve higher ranks whenever you cook a dish. So if you have any friends in the Wild Area or are willing to have some strangers join you on your travels, the benefits are practical, even if the mini-game is a bit repetitive.
Pokemon Curry Cooking Guide - A Breakdown of Ingredients
At first, it may seem daunting to cook curry because of the variety of options available. There are 151 different types of curry that can be created in Pokemon Sword and Shield. Yet the mechanics are pretty straightforward, and can be broken down into two items you need: an ingredient and berries.
The ingredient determines the type of curry you will see on the screen, while berries determine its flavor. The thing is, all of this is just flavor text; the flavor and type of curry do not matter at all when it comes to overall rewards for your Pokemon. The only reason to collect all 151 curry recipes is to fill out your Curry Dex, a collectible list of every curry in the game. There are some token rewards for filling out the Curry Dex; speaking to the Camping Guru in Hammerlocke Hills will give you a set of gold cooking utensils as a status symbol, for example. You can also get items for camping as well, mostly new toys for your Pokémon to interact with. Otherwise, filling out the Curry Dex is just another activity to participate in, and it is one that is pretty easy to fill out thanks to how the mechanics work.
So starting with the main ingredients, there are 25 unique ingredients that players can find in Sword and Shield. It should be noted that each ingredient can be used to make six different variations of curry (one for each flavor and one mixed flavor) except the Gigantamix which only makes one type of curry in the Curry Dex.
- Bach's Food Tin
- Bob's Food Tin
- Boiled Egg
- Brittle Bones
- Coconut Milk
- Fancy Apple
- Fresh Cream
- Fried Food
- Fruit Bunch
- Instant Noodles
- Large Leek
- Mixed Mushroom
- Moomoo Cheese
- Pack of Potatoes
- Packaged Curry
- Precooked Burger
- Pungent Root
- Salad Mix
- Smoke-Poke Tail
- Spice Mix
- Tin of Beans
Ingredients can be gathered through three primary methods. The first is purchasing them, mostly through Pokemon League officials in the Wild Area, as well as regular vendors across Galar. The ingredients can also be picked along the ground in the Wild Area, if eagle-eyed players are sharp enough to notice the shining spots dotting the surface.
One particular method to gain a lot of ingredients quick is to make sure you're connected to the Y comm, so that the Wild Area is populated with other players. Talking to those players in most cases yields a free ingredient, as well as other goodies from time to time. This saves up not only a lot of time, but also is a fast way to gather up a ton of new ingredients to help fill out your Curry Dex.
Pokemon Curry Cooking Guide - Berries Galore!
The second, and arguably more important, part to curry cooking in Pokemon is the addition of berries. Berries, for a long time have been a useful, fleshed-out mechanic that served purposes beyond just another collectible item. Most berries still have a practical use for the player, such as restoring health, curing status ailments, or even powering up or defending against different types. In total, Pokemon Sword and Shield has 53 different berries, some of which, such as the incredibly rare Starf, Enigma, and Lansat berries, are almost impossible to find.
To find berries, the player must again search the Wild Area for berry trees, smaller, brighter trees with a round shape. The player then can shake down the trees for a random assortment of berries, the types of which depend on which section of the Wild Area you are in. Note that this is a risk-reward scenario as if you shake the tree too much, or you're simply unlucky, a Pokemon in the tree can attack you, which will see the loss of some of your berries (described as being taken by wild Pokemon while you battle).
For Sword and Shield, each berry is given a description that determines its "flavor." The flavors range from Sweet, Sour, Dry, Bitter, and Spicy, and each berry is either one or two of these flavors, or helps eliminate a flavor. This becomes important for determining the flavor of your curry dishes, and you need 10 berries of the same flavor to turn your curry dish into that flavor.
So, for example, if you wanted a Dry Curry, you need to add at least 10 dry berries. Chesto berries are a dry flavor, but you can also add a Passho berry, which is considered 'very dry' in the game. Very Dry cuts down on the amount of berries you need to throw in the pot, and since the player is limited to adding only 10 berries at a time, careful consideration is needed to get the flavor the player wants. It should be noted that some berries have multiple flavors, which count as two different flavors at the same time, and a few berries are listed as "not flavors," meaning they cancel out their designated flavor when added to the pot.
Now keep in mind, the flavor does not seem to change the amount of experience points your Pokemon recieve, so this is mostly for filling out the Curry Dex over anything else. There is also one "mixed flavor dish" that requires an assortment of random berries for each ingredient. Outside of their competitive use, berries are pretty much tailored specifically for curry cooking, so don't be afraid to pour in a ton of rarer berries unless you need them for competitive purposes. It can also be fun to see what kind of dish you receive if you have multiple players adding berries at the same time, so there is extra incentive to play around with the mini-game in this way with friends.
List of Flavors and Berries
So here is list of each flavor and their corresponding berries:
- Bitter Flavor: Rawst Berry, Aguav Berry (Very Bitter), Coba Berry (Very Bitter), Haban Berry (Very Bitter), Jaboca Berry (Very Bitter), Ganlon Berry (Dry & Bitter), Petaya Berry, (Spicy & Bitter), Kee Berry (Very Spicy & Bitter), Maranga Berry (Very Bitter & Sweet)
- Dry Flavor: Chesto Berry, Passho Berry (Very Dry), Charti Berry (Very Dry), Micle Berry (Very Dry), Yache Berry (Dry & Sour), Kebia Berry (Dry & Sour), Ganlon Berry (Dry & Bitter), Apicot Berry (Dry & Sour)
- Sour Flavor: Aspear Berry, Iapapa Berry (Very Sour), Colbur Berry (Very Sour), Rowap Berry (Very Sour), Grepa Berry (Sour & Sweet), Wacan Berry (Sour & Sweet), Yache Berry (Sour & Dry), Kebia Berry (Sour & Dry), Apicot Berry (Sour & Dry), Salac Berry (Sour & Sweet)
- Spicy Flavor: Cheri Berry, Rindo Berry, Chople Berry, Figy Berry (Very Spicy), Tamato Berry (Very Spicy), Occa Berry (Very Spicy), Tanga Berry (Very Spicy), Babiri Berry (Very Spicy), Pomeg Berry (Spicy & Sweet), Qualot Berry (Spicy & Sweet), Liechi Berry (Spicy & Sweet), Petaya Berry (Spicy & Bitter), Kee Berry (Very Spicy & Bitter)
- Sweet Flavor: Pecha Berry, Shuca Berry, Mago Berry (Very Sweet), Payapa Berry (Very Sweet), Kasib Berry (Very Sweet), Custap Berry (Very Sweet), Roseli Berry (Very Sweet), Pomeg Berry (Sweet & Spicy), Qualot Berry (Sweet & Spicy), Liechi Berry (Sweet & Spicy), Grepa Berry (Sweet & Sour), Wacan Berry (Sweet & Sour), Salac Berry (Sweet & Sour), Maranga Berry (Very Sweet & Bitter)
- No Flavor: Kelpsy Berry, Hondew Berry, Lansat Berry, Starf Berry, Enigma Berry, Oran Berry (Not Sweet), Leppa Berry (Not Dry), Persim Berry (Not Dry), Lum Berry (Not Sour), Sitrus Berry (Not Spicy)
Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Guide - Ratings and Rewards
After all the preparation, it's time to cook. There are three steps players need to do with the cooking mini-game:
- Fan the flames by either tapping the A button, or by moving the Joy-Con controller up and down.
- Stir the pot by rotating the left analog stick with your hand, or moving the Joy-Con controller in a circular motion.
- Pour your heart into it by pressing A button just as the outer circle enters the green zone of the inner circle.
After all three of those steps, you eat the curry, and are given a rating. In total, there are five ratings you can earn, with each depending on the amount of berries, types of berries, and your performance in the mini-game was. Each rating also corresponds to a different set of bonuses that your Pokemon receive. The breakdown of these bonuses are as follows:
- Koffing Class (1-star) - Heals your Pokemon's hit points by 25%, increases Pokemon's experience by a small amount, increases happiness by a small amount.
- Wobbuffet Class (2-star) - Heals your Pokemon's hit points by 50%, increases Pokemon's experience by a small amount, increases happiness by a small amount.
- Milcery Class (3-star) - Heals your Pokemon's hit points by 100%, removes status conditions, increases Pokemon's experience by a medium amount, increases happiness by a medium amount.
- Copperajah Class (4-star) - Heals your Pokemon's hit points by 100%, removes status conditions, restores your party's PP, increases Pokemon's experience by a large amount, increases happiness by a large amount.
- Charizard Class (5-star) - Heals your Pokemon's hit points by 100%, removes status conditions, restores your party's PP, increases your Pokemon's experience by a huge amount, increases happiness by a huge amount.
Pokemon Sword and Shield Curry Guide - Final Thoughts
In the end, the cooking mini-game for Pokemon Sword and Shield is a bit shallow mechanically but filled with interactivity. Not only is it a cheap and easy way to help out your Pokemon, but it is also a good way to have a little fun with friends outside of trading, battling, and Max Raid Battles. Camping toys and the Curry Dex are also minor distractions to add to your growing collection of items for the game and can also lead to bragging rights for those willing to fill out the entire Curry Dex for their personalized cards as well.
If nothing else, Game Freak continues to go thematic with its mechanics here by offering an interactive experience that is able to serve an in-game purpose for players willing to engage in it. Hopefully, this guide makes the daunting task of cooking curry easier to swallow, and players will be able to enjoy a couple of homemade dishes with their Pokemon going forward.