Project Zomboid Food Guide and Tips

Food is a crucial resource in Project Zomboid, and it’s important to understand how to find, prepare, and eat it in order to survive. In this article, we’ll go over the different types of food in the game, as well as some valuable tips and techniques to help you make the most of them.

Cooking Food

Cooking Food

Cooking food has several benefits in Project Zomboid. It reduces the risk of food poisoning, making it safer to eat. It also makes food more satisfying and nutritious, helping you to feel full and satisfied for longer. To cook food, you can use appliances like cookers and microwaves, or a campfire if you’re outside of town. To turn on appliances, use the right-click menu. Once your food is cooked, retrieve it from the loot window and turn off the appliance. Antique stoves, fireplaces, and campfires require fuel, so make sure to stock up on wood or books to burn.

Identifying Poisonous Berries and Mushrooms

In the current version of the game, there are two ways to identify poisonous berries and mushrooms. The first is to choose the herbalist trait at character creation. This will give you the knowledge to identify which berry or mushroom is poisonous. The second method is to read the herbalist recipe magazine, which will also give you the necessary information. Alternatively, you can try making a salad with two berries or mushrooms of the same type – if there are multiple options, it means one of them is poisonous. Eating a poisonous berry or mushroom can be deadly, so make sure to exercise caution. Keep in mind that the type of poisonous berry or mushroom is random each game, so don’t rely on past experiences to determine which ones are safe to eat.

Taking Precautions with a Weak Stomach

If you have the weak stomach negative trait, it’s important to be extra careful when eating food. The effects of poisonous berries and mushrooms will be worse for your character, and even a good stomach can be killed by eating a large amount of spoiled food. If you have a weak stomach, it’s a good idea to avoid eating questionable food whenever possible.

Making a Salad

Salads are a healthy and satisfying way to eat your vegetables, and they’re easy to make in Project Zomboid. To make a salad, you’ll need a kitchen knife, bowl, and some cooked meat or other vegetables. A high cooking skill level can allow you to cook rotten food, which can be useful if you’re running low on fresh ingredients. To make a salad, simply chop up your ingredients and mix them together in the bowl. You can add some seasoning or dressing if you like, or eat the salad plain.

Converting Spoiled/Rotten Food to Fresh

In Project Zomboid, food can spoil over time and become inedible. However, once you reach cooking level 7, you can cook spoiled food and make it fresh again. This can be a useful way to stretch your food supplies if you’re running low. Keep in mind that cooked food doesn’t last as long as uncooked food, so it’s best to only cook what you can eat right away.

Eating Effectively

Eating food in Project Zomboid is a time-consuming process, and it can be frustrating if you’re in a hurry. However, there’s a trick you can use to eat faster. While your character is eating, you can interrupt the progress by performing a push or sprint action. This will allow your character to consume the food that the progress bar has already finished. This trick can be Utilizing a Watermelon

Watermelons are a refreshing and hydrating food in Project Zomboid, but they can take a long time to eat. Instead of eating an entire watermelon at once, you can eat a quarter of it and use the aforementioned eating trick to interrupt the progress. Watermelons can be cut into 10 pieces, so make sure to only eat 1/8 at a time. This will allow you to eat the watermelon more efficiently and still get hydration benefits.

Winter Rationing

Rotten Food

In all seasons except winter, you can find berries, cockroaches, and grasshoppers deep in the woods that never spoil. These can be saved as a winter ration if you run out of food. It’s a good idea to stock up on non-perishable items like these during the warmer months so that you have something to fall back on when food is scarce.

Forking Spears

Forking spears is a technique you can use to catch fish in Project Zomboid. It’s a slow and unreliable method, and it’s not recommended to go below level 7, as the growth of your fishing skill will be slow. If you do decide to try forking spears, make sure to do it at the edge of a water body and be prepared for a long wait.


Fish is a great source of food in Project Zomboid, but it can spoil quickly if not properly stored. Unsliced fish can be kept in the refrigerator for 2.5 weeks while still fresh, or for 5 weeks if rotten. Filleted fish only has half of this preservation time, so it’s best to eat it as soon as possible. If you catch a lot of fish and want to preserve it for later, consider smoking or drying the fish to extend its shelf life.

Fork/Spoon Trick

One of the little-known tricks in Project Zomboid is the fork/spoon trick. If you eat canned food with a fork or spoon icon present on it, your character will eat it with a fork or spoon! This might seem like a small detail, but it can add a touch of realism and immersion to the game.

Importance of Drinking Water

In addition to eating food, it’s important to stay hydrated in Project Zomboid. Dehydration can lead to serious health problems, so make sure to drink plenty of water. You can find water from sources like taps, rivers, and lakes, but keep in mind that water from these sources can be polluted and cause food poisoning. Boiling water before drinking it will kill any contaminants, but it’s also a good idea to filter the water through a cloth or a water filter to remove any visible debris.


Food is a vital resource in Project Zomboid, and understanding how to find, prepare, and eat it is essential to your survival. By following the tips and techniques outlined in this article, you’ll be better equipped to stay nourished and hydrated in the game. Whether you’re a seasoned survivor or a newcomer to the game, these tips will help you make the most of the different types of food available.