how to get iridium in stardew valley

How to Get Iridium in Stardew Valley

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Stardew Valley’s tool upgrades are difficult to wrap your head around initially, requiring a bunch of ore, smelting it, and getting money to wait several days for your upgraded tools. Among these upgrades, the absolute peak performance of Stardew tools is Iridium, the rarest ore in the game, evading many players, sometimes for entire playthroughs.

While Iridium is a mid-to-late game ore, it’s still obtainable throughout Stardew Valley. There is one primary way to get it, but you’d probably be surprised by the variety of ways to get the purple goodness, and it’s not all super dangerous mining operations that take a ton of time to get going. Let’s jump into explaining how to get Iridium in Stardew Vallery, sorted by best to worst.

Bottom Line Up-Front

Diving into the Skull Caverns in the Desert is the best way to get Iridium. Specifically, it’s abundant on the lowest floors, so make a ton of staircases and bombs to go super fast.

Early-game Iridium

I’ll put it bluntly; there is not a single “easy” way of getting Iridium, just methods that either take forever or ones that give you a ton of the great purple stuff at the cost of being dangerous, and the lucrative ones are usually way later in the game. I’ll sort these by most to least effective, so you’ll know what to do first.

All of these methods can be accomplished decently early on in the game, one way or another. Some are more tricky than others, most of which will take a long time.

If you really need a few bars right now, then go for it, but I’d honestly recommend progressing through the rest of the game before even worrying about Iridium.


stardew valley geode
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Geodes are little clusters of mystery that you’ve probably already come across, and they’re pretty okay at getting Iridium. When broken open by Clint, the purple stuff will only come from Magma Geodes, Omni Geodes, and Golden Coconuts.

As is any specific drop, Iridium is pretty rare from geodes. I’d still say omni geodes are your best bet, which luckily can be bought from Sandy on Wednesdays, making this one of the only ways to buy a theoretically endless amount of Iridium.

Geodes also provide an exceptionally long list of other alternative materials. Almost every material that needs to be donated to the museum and every ore, all obtainable from one thing, meaning you get some money back from buying and opening these.

This will almost definitely be one of the first ways you get Iridium. Magma and Omni geodes are common in the standard mines, and you have a decent chance of getting Iridium from these. I highly recommend gunning for this method first if you need early Iridium.

Fish Pond

stardew valley fish pond
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This is a method of getting Iridium at home, but remember that this one will take forever while having the benefit of being pretty lax. Fish ponds with Super Cucumbers occasionally produce Iridium Ore, but there is a catch.

You must build up your pond to have 7 Super Cucumbers, which isn’t too hard. Once you do, though, it’ll only give you Iridium at a 1/6 chance every four days. This sucks as a primary iridium farm, but it’s pretty much harmless as something on the back burner.

This Super Cucumber pond also produces several other items, including Diamonds, Gold Bars, Jelly, Pickles, and Sea Urchins. This means you won’t be too disappointed if it’s not Iridium.

To obtain a Super Cucumber, you will need it to be summer or Ginger Island. Either way, fish in the ocean from 6 PM to 2 AM to catch it. You can also try to score some from the Night Market submarine or the traveling cart, but remember you need 7 in total.


This one will be the most unreliable method on this list, but trust me, it’s really, really cool when it happens! Every night, there’s a 1% chance that a meteorite will try to strike, which sounds good on paper, but it’s far less likely than 1%.

The game will choose a random area on your farm and check if any objects, animals, water, etc., might block it. If they stop it, it just doesn’t spawn at all. If it does spawn, then you can break it with a golden pickaxe for six iridium ore, entirely for free.

Travelling Cart

stardew valley travelling cart
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The Travelling Cart comes by every Friday and Sunday, and they have many items they can sell. Among this 100+ item list is a single Iridium Bar for 3000-5000 gold. This is exceedingly rare and incredibly unreliable.

Needless to say, you shouldn’t be relying on this one. If you see it come up, you can feel free to buy it, especially since it’s by far the easiest way to get early-game Iridium, but if you want some reliable iridium, you need to look elsewhere.


stardew valley fishing
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Every time you go fishing in Stardew Valley, you can get a treasure chest. Every time you go fishing in deep waters, such as off the dock on the secret beach, you can get Iridium in the treasure chests you could pull.

I should also mention there is only a 1% chance to get Iridium, and it only gives two ore at most. I shouldn’t have to elaborate on why this is at the bottom; it’s so incredibly unlikely that you shouldn’t bother. The only benefit is you can get it early in the game.

Fishing can also occasionally provide Geodes, which, as I said in their dedicated section, are another method for obtaining Iridium. It’s not super unlikely you’ll get some iridium with this method; it’s just really unreliable.


stardew valley panning

This is the worst method, and before even starting this list, I knew it would be at the bottom. You can begin panning after clearing the fishing bundle in the community center, and it sucks having you wait to hear a sploosh in the water before you can pan for ore.

You can get every type of ore from panning and a few bonus things. You can also get every gem, though do note that getting anything other than some copper ore will always be a lower chance.

It’s only roughly a 1% chance for Iridium, which, while that gets higher depending on your luck stat, only gives a single iridium ore at a time. Panning already sucks doing it when necessary, don’t bother with this, please.

How to Get A Lot Of Iridium

I can highly recommend these methods. They’re what most players will get their entire stash from, but they’re all pretty late-game options, so if you’re still early on in your playthrough, you might hold off from these.

Honestly, you could earn all your Iridium exclusively through mining, which would still be pretty dang efficient. Nevertheless, let’s get into your options.


stardew valley mining
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This is the definitive, tried, and true way of getting Iridium, and there is no denying that. Even doing all the following methods combined will not net you nearly as much Iridium as a single trip to the Skull Caverns can; it’s purpose-made to get Iridium or get out.

You can technically get Iridium from mining outside the Skull Cavern, namely at Quarries or in the Volcano Mines. This isn’t recommendable, though, given those two don’t give you nearly as much as the Skull Caverns will; they should be kept in mind if you plan on going there anyway.

To start, we’ll be going to the Skull Caverns. First, reach the bottom of the regular mines, grab the Skull Key, and complete the Vault in the Community center (or buy the bus repair from Joja if you’re a soulless individual), and you’ll have access to the Desert and Skull Cavern.

Give it a few runs with standard equipment, especially if you only need a few iridium bars. If you want more, though, it’s high time we stopped messing around and started min-maxing. Each step will get a bit harder, so feel free to stop whenever you want and skip to where I talk strategy.

  1. Find your favorite weapon and use it. There are three weapon classes (Swords, Daggers, and Hammers), and they’re all effective in their own ways. Overall, I’d recommend a Hammer, but you should definitely go for whatever your best, highest-damage option is. (or whatever you like the most, I won’t tell.)
  2. Get a Golden Pickaxe. This shouldn’t be too hard if you’re already looking to dive into the Skull Caverns, but if you’re not ready to go there just yet, dive into the lowest floors of the standard mines and grab some gold for the upgrade.
  3. You need to get food before you delve into the caverns, specifically from the Saloon. Salad is the best bang for your buck, but pizza provides the best energy and healing, so go with what your budget wants. Try to get as much as possible, even if it breaks the bank.
  4. Now, you’ll need a ton of bombs; ideally, we’re talking mega bombs or explosive ammo for slingshots, but regular bombs will work. You can craft them (ideally by buying the materials from Clint) or buy the bombs from the Dwarf in the mines if you have the scrolls to talk to him.
  5. This step is all about getting buffed up, which means coffee (or triple shot espresso) for me, but if you want something fancier, go right ahead; coffee is easy to get by buying it from the Saloon. If you want something a little more effort but with more payout, kill some Rock Crabs in the mines for crab cakes.
  6. This step is a bit cheesy, but hear me out. Buy or gather a ton of stone, and use a crystalarium from the Community Center to make a ton of Jades. Now craft the stone into staircases and trade the Jade for them on Wednesday, and boom, a bunch of free floors with no effort. You can also craft staircases mid-mines with the stone you’ve collected by the by.
  7. As the final step, you should only dive in on a good or excellent luck day since we will need the best chances of success, so having high daily luck, a luck ring, and ginger ale (if you have it) will all be great. Anything you can possibly scrape together to increase that luck stat will go a long way.
stardew valley mining
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Once you’ve got these all squared away, it’s strategy time. Go ahead and head to the Desert by using a warp totem or standing in front of Pam as she leaves her house to make her go faster. Once you’re in, start blowing up rocks, mining if necessary, and try to avoid fighting.

We’ll also be jumping down holes, which are strangely unaffected by luck. The number of levels a hole can take you down depends on several predetermined factors but generally ranges from 3-15.

So, in essence, dive into holes, use staircases, and blow up rocks. If you’re low on health, you should eat immediately, and if you get cornered by a bunch of monsters, keep shoving salads down your gullet; they’ll make you invincible for a while.

I told you luck would be important, and here’s why. On each floor, there is a roughly 0.5%-1% chance that any given rock will turn into a cluster of ore nodes.

In terms of random ore placements, the possibility that a random rock will be metals (copper, iron, gold, or Iridium) is 2% on floor one, going all the way up to 100% on floor 1780 specifically. This is unaffected by luck, but the chance to find ladders or holes is.

Simply put, the lower you get, the more iridium nodes spawn, so getting as low as possible, no matter what, is always the priority. This means spamming staircases and crafting them whenever you reach 99 stone and avoiding anything that might take longer, like fighting enemies, especially without the Galaxy Sword.

Once you hit 100+ levels, it’s time to start prioritizing any iridium you see. Blowing it up will always be the fastest method, but if you’re out of bombs (and can’t craft any more on the fly), feel free to mine them manually. Once you’re satisfied, leave with a warp totem around 1:20 AM.

Statue of Endless Fortune and Perfection

stardew valley statue of endless fortune and perfection
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These are both slow, but only this high up since they’re just passive Iridium income you must do very little to get. The first is the Statue of Perfection, which isn’t obtained after getting perfection but from getting four candles on Grandpa’s Shrine.

Getting these candles is pretty easy; getting the community center, the skull key, a ton of money, and 30 total levels will do it. The Statue of Endless Fortune is pretty simply bought at the casino for a million gold, which is a lot of money, but it’s at least not super complicated and has a good payout.

Endless Fortune has a 1/4 chance to give you an Iridium Bar on any day that isn’t a villager’s birthday. This means around 20 Iridium Bars a year on average. On the other hand, the Statue of Perfection always provides Iridium ore, at 2-8 ore per day, for an average of 110 bars a year.

This may make the Statue of Endless Fortune out to be worthless, but the other things it gives are great, namely Diamonds, Omni Geodes, and Gold Bars. Plus, it’s a guaranteed excellent birthday gift machine! The Statue of Perfection makes Iridium exclusively, though, so it’s better if you only want that.


stardew valley combat
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You might have already found out about this due to your time in the mines, but if you didn’t know, purple slimes will occasionally drop iridium ore and, even more rarely, can drop a full iridium bar.

While this makes for a nice bonus when mining, it’d be a lousy method of gaining Iridium if it were just that alone, however, making a Slime Hutch with exclusively purple slimes means you can essentially farm Iridium at home, and this method is pretty good.

Purple Slimes also drop a massive array of other items, most notable of which are Diamonds, Coal, Dwarf Scrolls, and Red Cabbage Seeds. These can be helpful if you don’t have them in bulk already.

How to use Iridium

Now that you’ve got your Iridium, you probably have more of it than you know what to do with. You’ve probably already done the one or two things in mind you wanted to use it for, so this section of the guide is here to show you everything usage of Iridium just in case you need more things to spend your newfound purple wealth on.


stardew valley smelting
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Before you use Iridium, you’re probably gonna have to smelt it. While Iridium Ore can be used for scarecrows, warp totems, or traded for bombs, for every other use, you’ll have to smelt it using coal at a furnace, which takes forever.

With five iridium ore and one coal, you can make a bar. Smelting it takes eight in-game hours, meaning you’ll pretty much not be using that furnace for anything else the whole day. I prefer smelting one in the morning and another at night, but the best strategy is just making an absolute ton of furnaces.


stardew valley upgrading
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For most Stardew Valley players, this is what you’ll want. Iridium tools are typically twice as efficient as gold tools; for example, The Iridium Axe chops a tree down in 2 hits, the pickaxe breaks all rocks in one hit, and the hoe/can get 18 tiles on a full charge.

These tools are incredibly valuable, especially when considering late-game challenges like the Volcano mines or making massive farms to get millions of gold for the Golden Clock. These upgrades are expensive, though, at 25k gold and five iridium bars each.

While I’ll teach you the best ways to get Iridium in this guide, gold is a problem. Luckily for you, though, there is an excellent moneymaking guide on SDewHQ that you can follow if you want the 112,500 gold for every upgrade, including the trash can.


stardew valley crafting
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While it’s not what most people want Iridium for, Crafting is still an important reason to get Iridium as soon as possible, as almost all the items it can get will be necessary for pretty much every playstyle you could go for. Here’s everything you can make with it:

  • Deluxe Scarecrows have about double the radius of an ordinary scarecrow and cost 50 pieces of wood, one iridium ore, and 40 fiber.
  • Desert Warp Totems have a pretty obvious use; they will instantly warp you to the Desert, much faster than taking the bus. They cost two hardwood, one coconut, and 4 Iridium ore.
  • Iridium Sprinklers water tiles in a 5×5 radius around them, costing an iridium bar, gold bar, and battery pack.
  • The Iridium Band is a ring that makes you glow, attract items, and have 10% extra attack power. It costs 5 Iridium Bars, 50 Solar Essence and 50 Void Essence.
  • Crystalariums can duplicate any gem you put in endlessly; it does cost a hefty 2 Iridium Bars, 99 Stone, 5 Gold bars, and one battery pack, though.
  • Slime Incubators let you hatch more slimes at once in a Slime Hutch or use it outdoors to raise free-range slimes. It costs two iridium bars and 100 slime.
  • The Wedding Ring is a multiplayer exclusive item; it allows you to marry and kiss another player when you gift it to them. It has a hefty cost of 5 Iridium and one prismatic shard, but it lets me kiss my girlfriend, so I don’t care.
  • Deluxe Fertilizer is the best fertilizer, practically guaranteeing gold or iridium quality crops. It costs 1 Iridium Bar and 40 sap.
  • Hoppers are similar to Minecraft hoppers, just way less helpful. These can only take the items out of something automatically, such as a furnace, and cannot put in new materials. It costs 1 Iridium, ten hardwood, and 1 Radioactive Bar.

Trading & Building

stardew valley trading and building
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If you quickly scanned the wiki pages, you might not have thought of a few more unconventional uses for Iridium. The first is trading, which you can do in the Desert; here, you can trade five iridium ore for a Mega Bomb or one Desert Totem recipe for 10 bars.

The main last thing you’ll need Iridium for is buildings. Most of these will be at the Wizard’s hut after completing the community center, namely the Obelisks, which require 5-20 bars each. Also, at Robin’s, you can get a Slime Hutch, which requires one Iridium Bar.


Question: What is the Best Material in Stardew Valley?

Answer: While Radioactive ore exists, it doesn’t do much, meaning Iridium is the best ore for upgrading tools and crafting a ton of stuff.

Question: What is the Best Way to Get Iridium in Stardew Valley?

Answer: Going to the Skull Caverns and going as low as possible guarantees you a ton of Iridium Ore.

Question: What Should I do With Iridium in Stardew Valley?

Answer: After you’ve got the tool upgrades, I’d recommend investing your Iridium in Sprinklers and Crystalariums or just selling it.

How to Get Iridium in Stardew Valley: Conclusion

Iridium is, overall, extremely useful and worth the time it can take to get. I see people speedrun the Vault to get to the Desert and start mining Iridium ASAP because it is invaluable.

Skull Caverns are the best place to get Iridium, but you shouldn’t sleep on the other methods. Statues are an incredible way to earn passive iridium income. Slime farms aren’t half bad, and panning does, in fact, exist.

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