15 BEST Stardew Valley Tips: Expert Picks (2023)

Creativity is limitless, but discipline is also important!

Mir Rafay
Mir Rafay
27 Min Read

Are you having some trouble adjusting to your new life in Pelican Town? Don’t worry; WhatIfGaming has got you covered!

Stardew Valley offers a massive universe for you to explore. With the sheer amount of content introduced to the game since its release, the possibilities are endless! With such great flexibility comes a ton of freedom to play how you want. 

However, it can often be hard to discover the most efficient methods of performing core tasks, and not everyone finds them in a normal playthrough!

Best Stardew Valley Tips

Lucky for you, we’ve compiled 15 of the best Stardew Valley tips that you can use to skyrocket your progress in the game! We’ll be covering a plethora of content ranging from tricks you can do in the Mines to money-optimizing strategies on your farm. 

There’s going to be a little bit of something for everyone!


Use & Upgrade Your Sprinklers

Use & Upgrade Your Sprinklers

We can’t emphasize this enough – Sprinklers are fantastic! 

A Sprinkler is an item that waters your crops every morning, eliminating the need for you to spend your time and Energy manually watering them. Sprinklers practically require no maintenance once placed and work indefinitely. 

They also have relatively easy crafting requirements. This allows you to make a considerable amount of them – even if you’re in the early phase of your new farming life!

Sprinklers come in three variations – Sprinkler, Quality Sprinkler, and Iridium Sprinkler. An ordinary Sprinkler waters 4 adjacent tiles while a Quality Sprinkler does the same for 8 tiles. 

As you increase the quality of your Sprinkler, its area of effect increases. Iridium Sprinklers, in this regard, are the best possible variants you can have with a watering range of 24 adjacent tiles. Keeping these values in mind, you really need to upgrade your Sprinklers!

An Iridium Sprinkler will water 6x the number of crops as an ordinary one while taking up the same amount of space. This considerable upgrade in watering range lessens the clutter on your farm and increases the profits you can make from your crops. This is because minimizing the tiles taken up by a Sprinkler enables you to utilize the extra space to plant more crops.

Additionally, you can use the Pressure Nozzle item to further increase the watering range of your Sprinklers! An Iridium Sprinkler fitted with a Pressure Nozzle can water 49 tiles compared to the initial capacity of 24.

Pressure Nozzles, however, are a relatively late-game item. You’ll only have access to them after unlocking the Ginger Island and getting fond with Mr Qi’s secret room!


Use Explosives for Mining

Use Explosives for Mining

Whether you’re doing it in the Mines or the Skull Cavern, mining can be painfully slow and arduous. Why not speed things along by adding a bit of explosive to your expedition? 

Having to mine every single stone with your pickaxe in the regular variation of the Mines to find a ladder and progress is terrible enough as it is. However, doing that in the Skull Cavern, where none of your progress gets saved and every second counts? Awful!

To utilize your time more efficiently, take a good supply of Bombs, Mega Bombs, and Explosive Ammo. This eliminates the need for continuous mining as a single well-placed bomb can simultaneously take out multiple rocks!

To be more precise, a simple Bomb has a radius of 5 tiles. In contrast, a Mega Bomb has an area of effect ranging between 6 to 8 tiles. Both Bomb variants can save you a massive amount of time you would have otherwise used up mining.

A better method of using this strategy is by utilizing Explosive Ammo. This can be loaded into a Slingshot which you can then shoot in any direction you like! This works more smoothly than using Bombs because Explosive Ammo is quite helpful in fighting off the enemies present in the Skull Cavern (as well as the Mines). 

All three of these items can be crafted yourself or bought from the Dwarf indefinitely. We recommend using the former for your early-mid game since resources are scarce. Once you’re in the late-game however, it’s better to exercise the latter option!

Note: Cherry Bombs have too small of a radius to be effective, so you should avoid using them unless necessary


Decrease Zoom Distance & Turn Tool Hit Locations On

Decrease Zoom Distance & Turn Tool Hit Locations On

This happens to be one of the best Stardew Valley tips you’ll find. When you first start, the game is zoomed in by default, and your Tool Hit Locations are turned off. 

You should change both of these settings as soon as possible since you can optimize them to make your experience significantly better. Altering them can provide you with a greater field of view, allowing you to make better decisions in combat and make path-finding much more manageable in general. 

We recommend setting the zoom to 75% and permanently turning the Tool Hit Locations on. Both of these options can be toggled to your liking in the options menu. Here’s how you can change each one:

  • Press the “E” key to bring up your inventory.
  • Open the “Options” menu from the pop-up.
  • Press the “Always Show Tool Hit Location” option to turn it on.
  • Scroll further down to find the “Zoom Level” option. You can adjust this according to your preference, although 75% works best!

Adjusting these options is ultimately a subjective thing and may change based upon your preferences. It is, however, more convenient to change them as we’ve explained!


Make Wine & Use Indicator Items in Your House

Make Wine & Use Indicator Items in Your House

Wine is a type of Artisan good you can make using a Keg. It takes 7 days to produce, but it’s definitely worth it!

Wines can be made from a majority of the crops you plant, and it effectively triples the base sale price of that fruit/crop! But that’s not all; if you opt for the Artisan profession when you have the chance, the base sale price of each Wine gets further increased by 40%. 

This ensures you get a massive bang for your buck. Producing Wines also happens to be one of the best Stardew Valley tips you’ll come across for earning coins, so that’s an added benefit.

For reference, let’s think of an Ancient Fruit. This item has a base sale price of 550g. Pop it into a Keg and wait for 7 days to make Ancient Fruit Wine. The sale price suddenly jumps to a staggering 1,650g. 

If you further combine this with the Artisan profession, a single (ordinary quality) Ancient Fruit Wine can be sold for 2,310g! When using this technique, you can make use of another quick tip which is to place 1 Keg inside your house as a type of indicator item. Use this to make Wine whenever you use all your other Kegs placed outside your home, on your farm. 

This’ll eliminate the need for you to leave your house to check if your Kegs have finished producing a batch of Wine each time you start a new day. You can instead just check up on the single Keg placed within your house. This is a convenient tactic that’ll help you save the hassle of having to go in and out of your home every morning.


Pass Out in the Skull Cavern

Pass Out in the Skull Cavern

Now, this might not sound like a good thing at first glance, but hear us out! 

It’s always better for you to pass out inside the Skull Cavern while exploring rather than coming back home. Since you only have a limited amount of time to venture into the Skull Cavern each day, every single second counts. 

The moment you step out of that cave, all of your progress will immediately be reset. As such, once the clock hits 12 and your character starts to feel tired – ignore the message completely.

You’ll faint from exhaustion at 2 am, but going back home at that point is going to take up a few in-game hours. You can make much better use of this time by continuing to venture deeper into the Skull Cavern for a chance at obtaining high-level loot.

This method is entirely worth it because even if you end up fainting due to exhaustion inside the Skull Cavern, you’ll only lose 1,000g worth of coins. There are absolutely no other penalties for fainting in that area. 

The 1,000g coins you’ll lose are puny compared to the items you can acquire from the extra time spent exploring the area further. As such, don’t ever try to go back home using the Bus when you’re exploring the Skull Cavern – just continue with your expedition and faint!


Invest in Pigs

Invest in Pigs

Ranching with Pigs is one of the best Stardew Valley tips that we can give you. Pigs produce Truffles, which fetch incredibly high prices if you take into consideration how easy they are to obtain.

A single adult Pig can produce multiple Truffles a day – which further strengthens this strategy. Additionally, Truffles are a unique type of item. Even though they’re found by Pigs, they don’t count as Animal Products.

For some reason, the game considers Truffles to be a Forage item. This means that if you choose the Botanist profession once you have the option to, every Truffle you harvest will automatically be converted to the highest possible quality – Iridium!

This simple loophole converts the base sale price of a Truffle from 650g to 1,250g! The only downside to using this strategy is that it requires massive investments to set up. Each pig you purchase will set you back by 16,000g, and you’ll also have to construct a Deluxe Barn to accommodate it. 

Nevertheless, you’ll be able to make that money back in no time. Additionally, if you get fed up of Pig farming in the future, you can sell the animals which returns a significant portion of the amount initially invested. So go ahead and purchase some Pigs from Marnie as soon as possible!


Always Watch the TV

Always Watch the TV

Television is a fantastic resource for you to keep updated on several different things in the game. The TV is unlocked and placed in your house by default when you start the game.

Interacting with it allows you to watch different channels depending upon some conditions. Two channels, the Weather Report and Fortune Teller, are permanently available. These tell you the weather for the upcoming day and your in-game Luck for the current day, respectively. 

Livin’ Off The Land is another channel that’s available to watch every Monday and Thursday. This one gives general tips regarding different aspects of Stardew Valley, such as Foraging and Farming.

The most essential and helpful channel – “The Queen of Sauce” – airs on Wednesday and Sunday. This channel teaches you a new cooking recipe each Sunday and re-runs the same recipe on a Wednesday, in case you missed it. 

You should watch the Queen of Sauce each Sunday to unlock a new cooking recipe. The game keeps giving these out till the 2nd year, which makes this exceptionally useful for unlocking different recipes. Additionally, you can skip the channel in a matter of seconds and still obtain the cooking blueprint of the day!

Lastly, once you unlock the Ginger Island, the weather channel also gives you updates for the forecast of the newly unlocked area – making your television even more worthwhile!


Replicate Diamonds

Replicate Diamonds

Diamonds are the highest value Mineral in Stardew Valley (excluding Prismatic Shards), and a single one can fetch a price of 750g while discrediting profession-based bonuses. Naturally, Diamonds are scarce; however, you can obtain an unlimited quantity of them by utilizing Crystalariums!

A Crystalarium is a device that allows you to make copies of any Mineral or Gem that you insert into it. Diamond, being a Mineral, can be placed into a Crystalarium to infinitely receive copies of it!

This process, however, takes time – 5 days, to be exact. This can be painfully slow in the start, but you can craft and use multiple Crystalariums at the same time to increase your output of Diamonds.

Once you provide the Crystalarium with one Diamond, it’ll keep providing you with 1 copy of it every 5 days. You can quickly simulate a couple of days by repeatedly going to bed to accelerate this production process.

Once you obtain a decent amount of Crystalariums, this quickly becomes one of the most effortless ways of racking up a ton of money in the game. 

Additionally, once you’ve created a Crystalarium farm, you’ll have to make no other investments to maintain it as the machine is entirely self-sustaining. This can take some time if you do it solely based on the Diamonds you’re farming. We recommend either saving up on the mineral beforehand, or going on a Diamond-hunt expedition in the local Mines before filly committing to a Crystalarium farm!

Plus, Diamonds are a universally loved gift, so you can use this technique to quickly build up a ton of friendship points with Villagers!


Invest in the Right Crops

Invest in the Right Crops

Stardew Valley can be very cutthroat at the start of the game. If you don’t invest in suitable crops, chances are, you’ll end up with a disappointingly low yield for all your hard work!

Making use of the right crops at the right time falls under of the most lucrative Stardew Valley tips out there.

To make the best use of your time and get a significant return on your investment, it’s crucial that you know which crops to plant and which ones to stay away from. The following tables showcase the best crops you should consider planting in each of the seasons.


CropGrowth TimeCoins Per Day
Coffee Bean10 Days (2-Day Regrowth)20.77 – 25.56
Strawberry8 Days (4-Day Regrowth)11.67 – 20.83
Rhubarb13 Days9.23
Potato6 Days5 – 8.33
Cauliflower12 Days7.92


CropGrowth TimeCoins Per Day
Starfruit13 Days26.92
Blueberry13 Days (4-Day Regrowth)20.8
Red Cabbage9 Days17.78
Melon12 Days 14.17


CropGrowth TimeCoins Per Day
Cranberries7 Days (5-Day Regrowth)18.89
Pumpkin13 Days 16.92
Grape10 Days (3-Day Regrowth)16.8
Artichoke8 Days16.25


Upgrade Your Tools

Upgrade Your Tools

Tools are some of the most essential parts of your Stardew Valley journey. 

You’re going to require one of them in almost every action you perform, whether it’s chopping down some trees or catching some fish. 

As such, upgrading your tools is one of the best investments you can make in the game. As you increase the tiers of your tools, you’ll realize massive improvements in their efficacy. 

Furthermore, the amount of Energy required to use that tool would decrease drastically. Let’s take the Watering Can as an example. Ordinary Watering Cans have the capacity to hold 40 charges worth of water and have an area of effect of a single tile at a time.

In contrast, an Iridium Watering Can (the best possible variant in the game) can hold 100 charges worth of water and can water 18 tiles at once!

This comparison applies to all other tools, with a majority of them experiencing an increase in their strength. You’ll also need to have higher-quality tools to interact with particular objects such as Large Stumps or a Meteorite.

Of course, you should prioritize which tools to upgrade first rather than going in blindly. In this regard, the Fishing Rod, Watering Can, Hoe, and Trash Bin might be the least preferred upgrade options – although this can change depending upon your gameplay style!


Utilize buildings for Machinery

Utilize buildings for Machinery

Once you get the hang of the game and start venturing into the mid to late game, you’ll begin to invest in buildings such as Barns, Coops, Greenhouse, and the like. 

All these buildings are important, but you might not be utilizing them correctly. Buildings have a ton of space present within them, and most of the time, this goes largely unused. Especially in animal buildings, 3 Cows don’t need nearly as much space as an entire Barn to exist!

Instead of letting this extra space go to waste, use it to place machinery, gadgets, and chests. One of the best use you can make out of these buildings is to fill them to the brim with Kegs. This’ll allow you to make a ton of Wine without having to clutter your farm space.

Talking about farm space, you can shift any items you have on your farm to these buildings to gain an extra bit of interactable space. Lastly, filling buildings with such machinery will make it convenient for you to interact, supply, and re-fill them without having to spread them across a vast, open area.

As an added tip, you can place one of each machine you use in these buildings inside your farmhouse. You should then re-stock the machine placed in your farmhouse whenever you do the same for the ones placed in your buildings. Doing so allows you to check when an item has finished processing and is ready to be collected directly from your farmhouse instead of having to visit the building each time!


Hoard Spicy Eel & Triple Shot Espresso

Hoard Spicy Eel & Triple Shot Espresso

Food items are essential to make it through a tough day without fainting. Spicy Eel and a Triple Shot Espresso/Coffee are especially useful due to the buffs they provide. 

A single Spicy Eel restores 115 Energy and 51 Health. But that’s not all; it gives you a +1 Speed as well as Luck buff for 7 minutes! This is stackable with a Triple Shot Espresso, which offers a +1 Speed buff for 4 minutes. 

Combining both of them together will give you a significant Speed boost, and the additional Luck helps out with everyday activities. They’re instrumental if you’re venturing into the Mines or the Skull Cavern. 

Additionally, both of these items are relatively easy to get your hands on. The Spicy Eel can either be crafted using an Eel or a Hot Pepper. A better technique to get it, however, would be to exchange it with the Desert Trader by using a Ruby.

A Triple Shot Espresso, on the other hand, can be obtained from the same Desert Trader in exchange for a Diamond and can also be crafted using 3 Coffees. Both of these are viable methods of receiving it, so you can go with whichever one you prefer!


Purchase the Return Scepter & Obelisks

Purchase the Return Scepter & Obelisks

The Return Scepter is a handy item that allows you to teleport back to your house no matter where you are. Obelisks, on the other hand, will let you teleport to specific areas of the map depending upon the type you purchase.

The Return Scepter costs 2,000,000g to purchase, whereas Obelisks will set you back 500,000-1,000,000 depending upon the one you decide to go for. Overall, both of these things can be pretty hefty to purchase, but they’re one of the best investments you can make in the game.

The amount of time you’ll save up from having to travel to these locations otherwise would definitely be worth it. Besides, it’ll save you a lot of trouble from having to go back and forth between these areas. 

It goes without saying, however, that you should only be concerned with purchasing these items once you’re in the late game. It won’t make sense for you to invest in them when you have other, better things to purchase such as farm buildings, upgrades, tools, and the like!


Collect All Stardrops

Stardrop is an absolute godsend that permanently increases your total Energy by 34 points. When you first start the game, you’ll be capped at 270 Energy. If you find and consume all 7 Stardrops in the game, this meter goes up to a whopping 508 Energy points!

Stardrops are generally quite sought-after in the early game, but once players collect 3-4 of them, they stop actively looking for more. Rest assured, this is a mistake, and you shouldn’t quit your search for these precious items until you’ve collected every single one there is!

Even if you feel that you’ve garnered up enough Energy to meet all requirements for your average day, you should still seek these out. The permanent increase in Energy stat you receive from them is invaluable and will reflect once you reach the late game. Besides, it’s very satisfying to obtain all of the Stardrops anyway!

In short, collect those Stardrops!


Keep Track of Birthdays

Keep Track of Birthdays

Friendship is an integral part of your experience. Stardew valley has a massive focus on lore and story-building. If you want to get the best out of the game, it is important to build friendships with the villagers.

In turn, the best method of increasing your friendship level with any character is to gift them their “loved” items on their birthday. If you’re unaware, an item gifted to a villager on their birthday has its effect increased by 8 times! As such, it is essential for you to keep track of villagers’ birthdays. Putting up a calendar item in your house is quite convenient to achieve this, as it displays all birthdays of the current season. 

Each character has its own depth and unique interactions that you can unlock once you’ve achieved a specific level of friendship with them. Be sure not to neglect this seemingly unimportant part of Stardew Valley. 

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Rafay is THE video game guy. Pick a game. Any game. Chances are, he’s probably finished it. Twice.With an extreme love for Indie and Story-based games, ask him for a game review and watch him go hours and hours on end to justify his stance!When he isn’t focused on playing them, Rafay writes about – you guessed it – video games!
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