Free-to-play Cooking training

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This article is about the free-to-play guide. For the members' guide, see Pay-to-play Cooking training.

Cooking is a relatively easy skill to train in F2P (free-to-play) due to the wide availability of cooking resources (such as fish) and the large amount of experience training yields over a short period of time. Even power levelling cooking is cheap, efficient, and viable in F2P.

Completing the Cook's Assistant quest unlocks access to Cook-o-matic 25 which has a lower burn rate for most low level food than fires or other ranges, and rewards new players with enough experience to reach level 4 from scratch. However the difference is not large, and for low level fish, it is far more convenient to catch and cook on the spot yourself; cooking on fires also grant a +10% Cooking experience bonus.

Uncooked items[edit | edit source]

Some food items that require a combination of multiple items can be bought uncooked from the Grand Exchange. Though they are usually hard to buy, they may be good for training cooking.

After the release of player-owned farm, prices of most low-level raw fish skyrocketed as they are used to feed dragons, the highest level animal. Therefore, buying those fish to cook may not be viable for low level players; Fishing and then cooking them may be a more feasible option.

Cooking level table[edit | edit source]

This is a cropped table indicating what can be achieved starting at certain levels. It only covers items efficient for training cooking.

Minimum level Achievement Experience Notes
1 Crayfish, cooked chicken, cooked meat 30 Catching raw crayfish and cooking them is recommended, as they are caught rapidly even at level 1 Fishing (raw shrimps require the same Fishing/Cooking level and gives same experience, but are slower to catch).

They can be caught in the river east of the Lumbridge church and graveyard (where Xenia) near where you first arrive. You can chop down swamp tree to the southwest of the graveyard to cook them on your own fire.

However, a better spot is in Taverley; after the tutorial, you'd have unlocked the Burthorpe lodestone. Teleport there and run south till you see water, and there are crayfish spots on the northern shore (with trees very close by). Cooked crayfish isn't worth much, so you can quickly get rid of them by selling to Nicholas Angle (he also offers fishing bait required for some fish later), or deposit them in the bank south of the Taverley lodestone. Alison Elmshaper is just to the east and she stocks feathers, required as bait for later fly fishing (and is also surrounded by chickens that commonly drop feathers). You can opt to save some raw crayfish and bank them, as they can be sold on the Grand Exchange for around 377 coins, funding some later methods.

You can kill cows and chickens yourself and cook their meat if you want to train combat rather than Fishing. Raw meat and raw chicken may be found left on the ground at various training spots (there is a popular cow pen in Taverley just northwest of the aforementioned fishing spot), but fishing crayfish is generally the most reliable and quick, and having your Fishing level up would continue to ensure you always have increasingly high-level fish to train Cooking with.

5 Herring 50 Raw herring requires 10 Fishing to catch, and takes one fishing bait per catch. One of the closer options for new players can be reached by walking south from Lumbridge, along the east coast, past a bridge until you see fishing spots. Click the Bait option on the fishing spots to catch raw herring (and less commonly raw sardines, which can also be cooked). A bank is reasonably close, on the other side of the river (cross that bridge mentioned before) in Al Kharid.
15 Trout 70 Trout is a step up from beginner level food, healing up to 375 life points each. You can also pick up raw trout from power-fishers at the river near Gunnarsgrunn (you may also find raw salmon which you can't cook yet), but there is no guaranteed there will be players there dropping them. As a new player, you likely won't have the 20 Fishing to catch them yourself either (as cooking fish gives more experience than fishing it), and it also requires a feather (costs 6 coins per feather from shops, click for more info) per fish. If this is not available, stick to catching and cooking crayfish.

You must use the Lure option at fishing spots to catch trout. It would take about 40 minutes to go from 20 to 30 Fishing when you fish and cook trout; this also grants about 10k Cooking experience.

20 Pike 80 Raw pike can be caught in the same spots at Gunnarsgrunn, but by clicking the Bait option, consuming fishing bait.
25 Salmon 90 Salmon can be used for food, heal 500 life points each, or sold for 29 coins each. Raw salmon are also caught by the Lure option, on the same spot as raw trout (you will start catching both upon reaching 30 Fishing). After cooking Salmon, it can be taken into the Stronghold of Security and sold to players training combat on the second and third floors.
30 Apple pie 130 Apple pie can be made as mid-high level food, healing 300 life points twice each, although 32 Cooking is needed to enter the cooking guild to make these pies in bulk. They currently cost 251 coins each.
30 Tuna 100 Tuna can be used as mid-level food, healing 750 life points each. They are very popular for training cooking since power-fishers (mostly at Musa Point) often drop them ready to be picked up and cooked, creating a free source to train cooking quickly. Cooked tuna also has a constant demand and can be sold for 38 coins each.
32 Cooking Guild N/A The Cooking Guild is a good place to train cooking by making Jugs of wine and Apple pies, as it provides materials sufficient to make them.
35 Pizza 143 Cooked pizza can be used as food, healing 350 life points twice each. Cooked pizzas should not be sold, but kept for adding toppings later on.
35 Jug of wine 200 Jug of wine can be used as mid-high level food, healing 700 life points each, but causes the Attack stat to decrease. It is ideal for Ranged or Magic training. You may enter the cooking guild to make free wine, considering there are jugs, grapes, and water.
40 Lobster 120 Lobsters can be cooked as high level food, healing 1200 life points each. Cooked lobster can be sold for 135 coins, which is less than the raw counterpart.
45 Swordfish 140 Swordfish can be cooked as high level food, giving the highest healing rate for F2P players in a single bite, healing 1400 life points. As with all fish, it can be consumed in one bite. Although the difference between price of raw and cooked swordfish is small, cooking swordfish would incur major loss due to the low success rate when cooking the fish.
45 Meat pizza (143+25) Meat pizzas, which heal 450 life points twice, can be made by adding cooked meat to plain pizza. Raw meat is easily obtainable from killing giant rats, cows, and bears.
55 Anchovy pizza (143+39) Anchovy pizzas, which heal 550 life points twice, are made by adding cooked anchovies to plain pizza, making it the best pizza for F2P players. Anchovy pizza can be sold for 600 coins.

Training routes[edit | edit source]

Below are some training routes suitable for different kinds of players.

Training with Fishing[edit | edit source]

This route is suitable for players willing to train cooking along with fishing.

Level 1[edit | edit source]

Crayfish and shrimps can be caught without any requirements. Crayfish can be fished much faster, though both of them yield 30 experience per successful cooking. Cooked crayfish and shrimps don't sell much in Grand Exchange, thus they should be used for food only. The best place to net shrimps is Draynor, and the best place to cage crayfish is at the river behind the Lumbridge church.

Level 15[edit | edit source]

Trout can be caught in Gunnarsgrunn or in Lumbridge, provided you have level 20 Fishing. Trouts are very handy and each of them give 70 experience. Power-cookers can even grab dropped raw trouts from powerfishers and cook them. If you go to Gunnarsgrunn in World 3, or a populated world, there are usually people giving away free raw trouts and salmon.

Level 30[edit | edit source]

Tunas can be caught at Musa point in Karamja by harpooning them at level 35 fishing. Tuna yields 100 experience each cooking, though the catching speed is slow. The dropped raw tunas from powerfishers can be taken to cook. If a player decides to use this method to train cooking, a very busy world should be selected.

Level 40[edit | edit source]

Lobsters can be caught at Musa point in Karamja at level 40 fishing. Lobster yields 120 experience each. Cooking and catching speed is comparable to harpooning. There are rarely any lobster drops from powerfishers, thus fishing them yourself is better.

Level 50[edit | edit source]

Swordfish can be caught in Musa point in Karamja at level 50 fishing. Swordfish yields 140 experience each cooking. With the swordfish gloves obtained from the Fist of Guthix activity, players can earn double the amount of experience in catching a swordfish. However swordfish catching speed is the slowest among all fish, because tunas are also caught while harpooning. Also, a higher cooking level should be attained before starting to cook swordfish, as the burning rate is high among them.

It used to be a common practice to trade cooked for raw food; however, this is less common now due to the prices of raw food being more expensive.

Dungeoneering training[edit | edit source]

The reason this method is placed in a small part, is fishing is also involved in the part, and dungeoneering cannot yield stable cooking experience. The working principle is simple. Just chop/buy some high tier branches, fish and cook them into cooked food. There are several points to notice:

  • Fishing speed is much faster, and each fishing spot yields 11-14 fish before depletion.
  • Wood for burning can greatly affect the burning rate, choose the best wood to cook.
  • Buying wood would be much more expensive than cutting them, but fish do not have great cost.
  • Do it after defeating the boss.

Alternate method to level without burning food[edit | edit source]

This is an alternate method to level cooking without burning fish; however, it will most likely be slower than the method suggested above. It is recommended to use the other methods to attain level 50 cooking before beginning.

Without urns

Image Fish Type Start Level Finishing Level Number Of
Fish Required
Cost per
Raw Fish (coins)
Total Cost
Sell For
Coins per
Trout.png Trout 50 58 2,094 399 -835,506 148,674 -686,832 -4.69
Salmon.png Salmon 58 65 4,669 537 -2,507,253 135,401 -2,371,852 -5.64
Tuna.png Tuna 65 74 5,881 326 -1,396,258 162,754 -1,233,504 -2.88
Lobster.png Lobster 74 86 20,846 346 -7,212,716 2,814,210 -4,398,506 -1.76
Raw swordfish.png Swordfish* 86 99 67,405 330 -22,243,650 11,458,850 -10,784,800 -1.14
Total Fish 99,297 Total cost -34,195,383 14,719,889 -19,475,494

With Cooking urns

Image Fish Type Start Level Finishing Level Number Of
Fish Required
Number Of
Urns Required
Cost per
Raw Fish (coins)
Cost per
needed (coins)
Total Cost
Sell For
Trout.png Trout 50 58 1,768 26 399 1,145 -735,202 125,528 -609,674
Salmon.png Salmon 58 69 3,922 74 537 1,145 -2,190,844 113,738 -2,077,106
Tuna.png Tuna 69 74 3,600 75 326 1,145 -1,259,475 136,800 -1,122,675
Lobster.png Lobster 74 99 83,080 2077 346 1,145 -31,123,845 11,215,800 -19,908,045
Total Fish 92,370 Total cost -35,309,366 11,591,866 -23,717,500

*It is not advisable to cook swordfish after you reach level 86 while cooking with urns, because you can't use urns on Swordfish, the amount of Swordfish you need to cook is a couple of thousand more than you need with Lobsters and you will lose a bit more money.

A cooking urn gives 950 experience when full. If one uses a cooking urn and 40 lobsters the experience gained averages to 143.75 per lobster. This is higher than swordfish at only 140 per swordfish.

Also, another faster method is to cook pizza from the level you're able to cook them all the way to 99. It is better experience than swordfish (143 vs 140) and you make 100 coins per pizza. The prices change all the time though, so check the prices before selling the pizzas. If one uses a cooking urn and 34 uncooked pizzas the experience gained averages to 170.94 per pizza.

Training via Cooking guild[edit | edit source]

Please note, 32 Cooking is needed to enter the guild. Some equipment, like a chef's hat should be brought before entering the guild as well.

Level 32[edit | edit source]

Although apple pies can be made at level 30 cooking, only the cooking guild has free and fairly abundant resources for mass-producing them. One jug, pot, pie dish and three cooking apple spawns are available in the guild. The process of making pies can be sped up if players bring their own jugs and pots prior. Wheat can be harvested in the field directly behind the guild, then made into flour using the mill. Collecting flour, water and mixing pastry dough can all be done on the ground floor.

Level 35[edit | edit source]

Jugs and grapes can also be found inside the guild. Wine can be fermented within the guild by filling jugs with water from the sink on the ground floor, then using grapes on the jugs of water. Buying the ingredients from the GE results in a profit/loss of -59,766 coins per inventory. Wine gives the highest cooking experience per success, though grape spawning is slow. Nothing is needed to be brought prior. This method of training is somewhat expensive, but can give up to 2,800 experience per inventory (14 grapes/14 jugs of water).

Training with complex food[edit | edit source]

Complex food requires time to make and can initially be a bit costly, but can be very rewarding. Complex food basically has varied trips, ranging from Draynor to Wilderness. It is possible to power-level these kinds of food, simply by purchasing the final uncooked version of the food (an uncooked pie, for example) from the Grand Exchange, or trading with another player. This method is usually quite expensive, but in turn offers very fast experience.

Level 10[edit | edit source]

Redberry pies are the first complex food that can be made. As these pies serve no purpose at higher levels, a quick method shall be shown here. Redberries, jug, pie dish, and pots can be bought from Beefy Bill in the cowfield south of Varrock. Beefy Bill can supply all the goods for about 8 coins. If you're in Lumbridge, Beefy Bill can bank them and the mill can give flour, so it's the easiest power-levelling. Note that Beefy Bill charges a 10% commission to bank items. The supplies such as buckets or jugs can also be bought from general store, but it's better to get them from the bushes south-east of Varrock, straight north from the entrance to Al Kharid. After that, redberry pies can be made in bulk.

Level 20[edit | edit source]

Meat pies can be similar to redberry pies, except cows can be killed at the old Gnomecopter site and banked for quick storage.

Level 25[edit | edit source]

Stews can be made by picking potatoes in the potato field between Lumbridge and Varrock (directly north of the Lumbridge cow farm) and killing the cows for raw beef. Bowls can be taken from the kitchen of Lumbridge Castle, purchased from general stores or the Grand Exchange, or manufactured with the Crafting skill (requires level 8 Crafting).

Level 35[edit | edit source]

Plain pizza can be made from one tomato, one cheese and one pizza base; the pizza base can be made by using a pot of flour with a jug of water or bought from Fat Tony in the Bandit Camp (Wilderness) for 4 coins each. To ensure quick buying of pizza bases, exactly 51 coins can be brought to buy exactly 10 pizza bases, and immediately move to and from the bank. Due to the personal shop update, the respawn rate of shop supply is low and players might choose to make the pizza bases themselves or wait. Cheese and tomatoes can be taken from Aggie's house or Fat Tony's camp, but both of them have disadvantages. Draynor lacks a support of cooking ranges, and Fat Tony is in Level 23 Wilderness which means players are at risk of being attacked by other players. Bandits are also aggressive, meaning that lower-levelled players must take care if they choose to train with pizzas in the Wilderness. Cooking pizzas at the range in Al Kharid can earn up to 180k xp per hour.

Level 55[edit | edit source]

Anchovy pizza can be made. Making an Anchovy pizza out of plain pizza and anchovies is always a success. Raw anchovies can be fished south of Lumbridge, in Al Kharid and in Draynor.

Tips[edit | edit source]

Bonfires[edit | edit source]

Bonfires are a great way of earning more experience, as cooking on a bonfire will earn a player 10% more experience over a range. For example, cooking a lobster on a range will result in 120 experience, while cooking a lobster on a bonfire provides 132 experience. This is particularly beneficial if a player has a high enough level that the food will no longer burn. Bonfires can be frequently found at popular Firemaking training locations, such as at the Grand Exchange.

Plain cooking urns[edit | edit source]

Plain cooking urn (r).pngPlain cooking urn.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png
Raw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.pngRaw lobster.png

When power levelling, using plain cooking urns can be beneficial since they grant extra experience and thus speed up the levelling process. Plain cooking urns can only be filled by foods that require a Cooking level of up to 40, which means that lobster is the highest grade of fish that can be used in conjunction with them. In practice plain cooking urns provide an XP bonus of almost 20%.

Usable urns are untradeable and thus are not sold in the Grand Exchange. Instead, they are sold as plain cooking urn (nr)'s to which the player must attach fire runes to make them into plain cooking urn (r)'s. The act of finishing the urn with a fire rune is instantaneous but makes the urns untradeable.

Currently, buying two pieces soft clay, crafting them into a plain cooking urn (nr) and selling it at the default market price of 1,002 yields a profit of 200. When the profit is negative, be prepared to pay above the market price or consider crafting the urns yourself.

The recommended bank preset for using plain cooking urns while power levelling with lobsters is one plain cooking urn (r), one plain cooking urn that has already been partially filled, and 26 raw lobsters. This minimises the need for banking and ensures that every lobster cooked contributes to an urn.

It's advisable to turn on the "Auto-teleport current skilling urn when full" option from the Miscellaneous Settings section of the Gameplay settings to eliminate the need to manually teleport the urns once they're full.

Sell and buy, or just trade[edit | edit source]

Fish, particularly the high level ones, play a big role in the cooking market. They make up the bulk of the food market, with high demands of both raw and cooked forms.

When training on lobsters or swordfish, players may wish to use the RuneScape food forum to buy raw fish and sell cooked ones. This can be made quicker by going to the fishing spot in Karamja and ask for lobster, usually they will be happy to oblige.

Buying most fish raw from the Grand Exchange and selling the cooked product in the Grand Exchange is no longer profitable due to many players buying mass amounts of fish to get to 99 Cooking. For many fish there is a significant price difference between cooked and raw fish. If players wish to be profitable, they should sell on demand. This, however, is a slow way to sell food. A way to train cooking and gain a profit would be to make foods containing many steps. These foods give much more experience than fish when made from scratch, many cannot be burnt, and can be sold for modest profit in the Grand Exchange. The downside to this method is that it takes much longer to prepare the ingredients for combining.

Hot spots[edit | edit source]

Some places are more suited for cooking than others. Here are some recommended places.

Note: If you create your own fires in the Grand Exchange near the bankers, you can eliminate travel time entirely. However, this means you can only cook 27 items per inventory, as you need one spot for logs. Also, this requires one log for every 27 items you wish to cook, slightly increasing the cost of cooking. Nevertheless, it is significantly faster.

A fire can also almost always be found in crowded worlds in the Grand Exchange and in the Lumbridge Market near the bank box (preferable for the zero walking distance to the fire). This solution means you can cook 28 items per inventory, minimise walking distance and get the bonfire's experience bonus. From time to time a portable range can be found in these locations, so it is worth considering as a training location.

Location Distance from range Optimal food Notes
Edgeville bank Evil Dave location.png Very short Lured fish There is a range right by the bank in Doris's house. (However Doris is a members-only NPC, so the house is empty.) It is also a popular place to train firemaking, which means that there will be plenty of fires around to cook on if the player wishes for faster runs. (Note: the house that contains the range has a door that automatically closes occasionally.)
Lumbridge bank Cook (Lumbridge) location.png Very short Lured, netted and crayfish Either the 4 log respawn points just outside the bank, or the cooking range in the kitchen in Lumbridge castle can be used for cooking, which the latter boasts lower chance of burning food, although Cook's Assistant is required for access. Players can cook trouts, pikes and salmons by their ways from River Lum to the bank. Bring 28 raw pieces of food. Make a fire and cook all 28 pieces of food. Bank and repeat. Power cooking is also recommended as logs spawn very near to the bank.
Al Kharid bank Al kharid Cookingtraining.png Very short Power levelling Although the range is nearest to bank among everywhere in F2P worlds, fishing spots are rather remote. However, this hot spot has no doors or anything that could block you, which can reduce time taken to cook an inventory. This place is recommended for powercookers who already have all the necessary food.
Draynor Village Draynor Cookingtraining.png Short Shrimp and anchovies Though the nearest range is in Draynor mansion, the shrimps and anchovies can be cooked on fires made by firemakers.
Grand Exchange Grand Exchange map.png Medium - Very short Power levelling Grand Exchange is a popular place to train firemaking, and materials can be bought and sold freely. A busy world is recommended for training cooking at Grand Exchange.
Gunnarsgrunn fishing spots Barb village Cookingtraining.png Medium Lured fish Players may stay at the fishing spots and make fire by themselves to cook their food, or cook at the non-stop fire in Peksa's shop (the helmet shop), or the Long hall is a slightly longer way to cook food.
Musa Point Spot Karamja Cookingtraining.png Very long Tuna, lobsters and swordfish Musa spot is the most popular place for Free-To-Play players to catch tunas, swordfish and lobsters, which is a major source of Cooking Experience. Fire must be manually made by cutting logs (at the entrance to the Musa Point). In busy worlds, fires are often lit by other players. The cooked fish generally have lower value and are not recommended to be sold to the general store. They can be banked in Draynor bank or noted at Stiles, which can then be sold to other players or used as reliable food. To maximise the experience rate, players can login to a very busy world (possibly world 1-3), take raw fish on the ground and cook them, trade to give away to players (the best way), eat/drop them (if out of energy) or run to Stiles to note them. Use the Explorer's ring 3 to teleport to the cabbage patch when you are going to go back to Draynor bank, or using Lumbridge teleport if it is available. Using ferries to travel back to Port Sarim is not recommended. Stiles, as mentioned before, resides south-east from the Karamja volcano entrance and can aid a player in converting fish to bank notes. This removes the need of a player to have to leave the island to bank fish. Thus, a fisherman can stay at the island indefinitely and proceed to cook the fish later on.