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Provisioning: Farming & Crafting Tips

No anecdotes. No useless information. Just some basic farming and crafting tips I’ve discovered from my time playing ESO. (If I get a good community response, I may try my hand at another helpful tips guide.)

If you have any information to share, please be as specific as possible. Don’t post something like, “Uhhh…there’s garlic…uh…in the Mages Guild hanging from a bookshelf.” What city? What floor? What’s around it? Do you have a picture or a link? It might also be helpful to list your alliance and level.

*Note: The character I gathered this information with is veteran rank in the Daggerfall Covenant. Aldmeri and Ebonheart areas are VR. It’s possible some of the items in these areas will populate differently for characters in different alliances.


Contrary to a lot of information online, I’ve found that baskets tend to contain meats and other food-based crafting materials, whereas beverage ingredients can be found in crates and barrels.

Where’s the garlic?

You may have noticed that there’s not an abundance of this food ingredient. Do not believe what you read on every thread. You will not find garlic in crates or barrels in delves—at least not enough to warrant having to open every single thing you come across—or any random homes, and if you do, feel free to post an exact location of it on this thread, sans extraneous details, please. Obviously stealing food is fine as long as you plan to store it in your bags or cook it right away, but personally, I prefer not to waste space or have to worry about guards.

Tip #1

When farming in an instance-based zone, like delves, or even a building in town that you have to go through a door to enter (and possibly wait for a loading screen), you can simply log out and re-log back in to replenish items in that zone, i.e. water skins, food crates, weapon racks, desks, nightstands, etc. Dwemer ruins, which are on a reset timer (approximately 1 hour) that’s not affected by re-logging, are a unique exception to this trick.

You can use this tip for farming mats for most crafting professions and it will save you an incredible amount of time. It may seem tedious, but it’s far better than the alternative and it allows you to farm one location as efficiently as possible. Occasionally this trick works when you’re out in the open world as well. Try it at the locations below.

Farming Locations

Malabal Tor, Velyn Harbor, Bank (Harbor Customs Hall): Upstairs in a hallway, across from a wooden counter, hanging around a stone hearth are 2 – 3 ropes of garlic. There’s also white meat, pumpkin, jazbay grapes, saltrice, apples, melons, cheese, small game, potatoes, carrots, and beets in this location, all of which you won’t have to steal. Log out and log back in. Rinse/repeat.

Malabal Tor, Dra’bul (Orc Camp): Shaman Glazulg’s hut in the eastern part of the camp has poultry and game hanging over the fire pit. Follow the fork in the road right, past the shaman’s house, north out of camp, and to the shore. To the left as you reach the shoreline there is one group of two orcs by a wooden cart and another pack of three orcs guarding a boat by a campfire. There is a makeshift shack in between these two groups with fish, potatoes, flour, and beets. Log out and log back in. Rinse/repeat.

Glenumbra, Ilessan Tower (Delve): You can find this delve east of Daggerfall. This is a good go-to dungeon for farming a diverse selection of provisioning ingredients. If you’re in DC, it’s also one of the lowest level delves, which means you can plow through everything with reckless abandon and farm to your heart’s content.

Reaper’s March, The Vile Manse (Cave/Public Dungeon): You can find this public dungeon northwest of the Fort Grimwatch wayshrine. The kitchen on the first floor has 2 – 3 ropes of garlic, beets, flour, saltrice, carrots, and some crates and barrels. The first and second floors of the main house area also have a number of desks, wardrobes, trunks, and other containers. The entrance to the actual dungeon portion is to the left of the cooking fire in the kitchen.

While various containers, crates, and barrels can be found throughout the entire instance, the very first area of the basement you enter has the highest concentration of high-level provisioning materials I’ve seen yet. There are too many to list. And there are only a few packs of mobs you have to clear to get access to all of it! There’s one room (directly across from the entrance) that has entire wheels of cheese. You can loot 40 – 50 wedges of cheese per run.

*Note: There seems to be an hour-long cooldown similar to the Dwemer ruin mechanic that affects the repopulation of containers in this instance. Simply logging out and re-logging back in will not work here.

Tip #2

Stealing is inevitable, as is breaking into buildings. Just don’t get caught. And if you do, you really only have three choices: (1) Stay put and wait for your aggro and bounty to diminish; (2) Find a guard and let them detain you so you can give back the (un)intentionally stolen item(s) and pay a fine; (3) Flee. Although, I don’t recommend trying this option until you’re VR. Guards will melt your face. Duh. I’m sure it’s possible to kill them, but do you really feel like dealing with all that for stealing some bread or an apple?

Stormhaven, Wayrest, Mages Guild (Chironasium): Downstairs in the basement there is a small room with a friendly NPC taking notes. There’s poultry, small game, beets, 1 – 2 ropes of garlic, and fish on the shelf. There are also a number of desks and cabinets down here you can check for motifs or recipes. You will have to steal everything from this location, so make sure to stay hidden! There’s only the one NPC to worry about though. Log out and log back in. Rinse/repeat.


Once you’ve amassed a large quantity of provisioning materials, simply go to a cooking fire and craft the highest-level food or beverage you can create. Inspiration gains for provisioning are based on the level, not the quality, of food. In other words, if you had to choose between crafting a level 15 superior (blue) recipe or a level 20 fine (green) recipe, you’d want to go with the level 20 craft.

Tip #3

In order to expedite your crafting it’s handy to use the Y button in your cooking menu, which lists the recipes your character has, in order to toggle on and off on the recipes that you currently have ingredients for. However, it might also be helpful to note which ingredients you are missing from higher-level recipes. If you have two out of three ingredients for a given recipe, take note and try to find a fixed location you can re-log from to farm that third ingredient.

You can also check the guild traders—and guild stores (via banker NPCs)—in major cities for ingredients, though prices fluctuate drastically. Traders and stores are also a good source for cheap recipes. There are multiple traders in Daggerfall, Wayrest, Elden Root, and Ebonheart, to name a few.

That's all for now. Again, if you have anything to add, please be respectful.

Edited by Lokustreign on August 3, 2015 3:44PM
Diomedeidae - DC - VR8 Sorcerer
High on Fire - DC - 36 Nightblade
  • Curtischoy
    I have something that I tried last night and it worked pretty well.
    I play on Xbox One on the NA server as an Altmer Templar, currently lvl 36.

    Turn on fast loot in the options menu. (Might be called auto loot, I don't remember)
    Loot all backpacks, sacks, boxes, barrels, etc. while out in the world questing. Solo delves are great for this, like while doing a mages guild quest.
    Stop at cooking fires often and craft every thing that you can until you have no ingredients left. All of those ingredients take up a ton of inventory space. Make sure to craft the highest level recipes you have ingredients for first.

    This is not the fastest route to 50 provisioning skill, but you don't really have to do anything special and you can play however you like while doing it. If you do not have a lot of recipes this will not work well because you will find that you cannot use lots of the ingredients you pick up and they will just take up inventory slots.

    This is not at all a focused grind to 50 and it is not meant to be. This way you can just level provisioning as you level your character.
  • OOFatality
    Dude, thanks a lot for that garlic location. You're the First \ only source i found online. I kept getting writs with garlic and couldn't find any. Thanks.
  • Truthsnark
    For higher-level characters who have unlocked all of it, Coldharbour's Hollow City is the place to go if you need cheese, poultry, or fish; next to the wayshrine there are guild vendor kiosks, and the middle kiosk on the wall side has tons of cheese on skewers as well as poultry hanging from the line behind the wagon, and fish (also check the top of the crates, there is fish sitting on them). Nothing in Hollow City is owned, so there is also great opportunity for container farming. Again, you must do the quests to unlock Hollow City to see the guild vendors and make the various buildings accessible.

    If you are low-level Ebonheart Pact or have started Cadwell's Silver (AD) or Gold (DC), go to Ebonheart in Stonefalls and find the Supply Shack at the northwest end of town near the Argonian quarter. Everything is owned, but there are Jazbay Grapes, White Meat, Potatoes, Garlic, Beets, Seasoning sacks, and a Flour sack. You can log in and out there and load up your packs because there are no NPCs to see you.

    For Pumpkins, again Stonefalls at Sathram Plantation (wayshrine named the same). You will find many laying around on the ground in the fields and around knocked-over wagons.

    For low-level DC folks looking for a good variety of cooking/drink ingredients, the upstairs of the Rosy Lion Inn in Daggerfall has lots of containers/cabinets and foods sitting on tables. Everything is owned but there isn't a single NPC to see you. There is specifically a melon basket and a greens basket in the attic, and usually bananas on the table on the second floor.

    For the light-fingered provisioners who hang out in Belkarth, the kitchen of the inn there has many ingredients on the counter including a good amount of carrots (which I find to be tough to locate sometimes), and tomato/apple crates. You have to juke around the cook and be pretty sneaky, but she's not too hard to dodge. Bonus Belkarth - if you need apples, go down the hill to the lake next to town, there is an apple orchard there with tons of unowned apple containers laying around, as well as other containers for random ingredients.

    Another carrot and garlic location is Sweetbreeze Cottage in Grahtwood - best accessed from the Gray Mire wayshrine, then head northish. It's a "scenic" spot so you can use that to help you find it. There are a good number of carrots in the garden outside the cottage, containers, garlic, and others inside (garlic hanging in the door). Unowned once the quest in the area is completed (quest is to find a lady's missing minstrel husband).
  • Brrrofski
    There's 8_12 garlic you can steal from Sentinel guild traders. Launder it, come back outside and it's back. Good place for cheese and beets too
  • jimmulvaney
    Mentioned it earlier on another thread linked to this one, but THANK YOU Lokus for this! I finally made it over the L20 hump. About 5k (and less than an hour) later I finally have L50! Thanks again, you were right... the ambiguity is what made all those other provisioning threads so unhelpful.
  • MamaDruid
    Great tips! Thank you @Lokustreign.

    I have been gathering materials for provisioning at the border keeps in Cyrodiil. It's easy enough on a level ten to join a campaign, enter it, and run around grabbing everything in all the crates, barrels, and even off the tables and shelves. Everything is freely available; no need to bring your thief.

    There was garlic hanging to dry, cheese out on plates... a bit of everything can be found there. There's also a chance of finding higher quality recipes! I found a blue and purple quality recipe on one trip.

    Edited by MamaDruid on September 5, 2015 6:47PM
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  • Siniztor
    id say be a vamp seems my higherling has a joker inside him..im sitting on over 500 garlic just from one of my hirgherlings lol

    Best way to grind prov. buy 1 blue recipe for each skill point level your put in so recipe wise they read 1/2 -2/2 -3/2 -4/2...get just the food to grind those and you can be done in 30 mins to a hour...im working on my 5th provisoner today and they take maybe 30 mins to a hour to buy recipes and grind
  • BenevolentBowd
    Great post. Also, there are a lot of passive mobs that can be one-shotted for a chance of provisioning material. One of the best provisioning mobs are monkeys as they can drop two types of mats: white meat and bananas.

    In Grahtwood, there are several large colonies of monkeys. For example, on the road between Gil-Var-Delle Wayshine and Elden Root Temple Wayshrine, there are over 25 monkeys that can be one-shotted for a chance of obtaining Bananas and White Meat. The respawn rate is under 5 minutes. There are also Hag's in the area with cooking fires in their homes that can be used to make stuff while waiting for respawns.
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  • Xeven
    This is a really great post. You get an awesome.

    Now then, not to be a jerk or anything, but what is the point of all of this work? This is more of a question aimed at the devs.

    I'm level 50 in all crafts. The only ingredients that really matter are the ones that make green, blue and purple vr16 foods. Aside from writ ingredients (which are also basically a waste of time after level 50), everything else is just a waste of bank space, and a waste of time.
  • CGPsaint
    Xeven wrote: »
    This is a really great post. You get an awesome.

    Now then, not to be a jerk or anything, but what is the point of all of this work? This is more of a question aimed at the devs.

    I'm level 50 in all crafts. The only ingredients that really matter are the ones that make green, blue and purple vr16 foods. Aside from writ ingredients (which are also basically a waste of time after level 50), everything else is just a waste of bank space, and a waste of time.

    I really don't care for Provisioning, however I will always aim to hit level 50 with any of my characters so that I can take advantage of the Gourmand & Connoisseur passives to add the 20 minute duration to the effects from all consumed food and drinks.
    "Some enjoy bringing grief to others. They remind M'aiq of mudcrabs—horrible creatures, with no redeeming qualities."
  • livingdeaddoll_zx
    There is no downstairs to the wayreat mages guild
  • Stopnaggin
    The winery in craglorn, just outside Belkarth has between 4 and 6 garlic hanging.
    Betnikh has and empty trader cart near guild store vendor has tons of cheese. HAVE to steal it but there is a bunch.
    Aldmeri starter island shipwrecks all over the beach with tons of provisioning mats
  • Nestor
    Stealing Provisioning Ingredients and Laundering them is a nice way to Level Legerdemain. Grab the ingredients along with the loot you fence for cranking up the counts to level that skill line.

    The ships in Daggerfall Harbor near the Kiosks are a great source for this.

    You only need to know one type of each recipe, like if you know a Blue that gives a Health and Magic Boost, you don't need to know another one. Sell that extra recipe. Intermediate Blue Recipes are the rarest things in the game, so you can get some good gold selling those recipes.

    To level provisioning, make Green Recipes, the highest level you can make. Blue and Purple Recipes give the same Inspiration.

    Finally, Hirelings are hands down the best source of Ingredients in the game. Leveling Provisioning to get the top end Hirelings is simple and easy. I have 4 figures of every ingredient in the game, all due to hirelings as I rarely farm for ingredients.

    Making Green Foods and Drinks from excess Ingredients and selling them to Vendors is a great way to make gold, tedious on the consoles without addons but doable. I can make 20K to 30K just making 200 stacks of all the CP150 Food and Drink Recipes and Vendoring them.
    Edited by Nestor on November 3, 2016 3:40PM
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  • summitxho
    Xeven wrote: »
    This is a really great post. You get an awesome.

    Now then, not to be a jerk or anything, but what is the point of all of this work? This is more of a question aimed at the devs.

    I'm level 50 in all crafts. The only ingredients that really matter are the ones that make green, blue and purple vr16 foods. Aside from writ ingredients (which are also basically a waste of time after level 50), everything else is just a waste of bank space, and a waste of time.

    I leveled up 3 characters to provisioning 50 and do writs daily in order to get the psijic ambrosia recipe fragments personally. Being as I have recieved quite a few duplicates so far, I list them on the trader for a decent price and its been making me pretty rich (to me) along with the frost mirriam and bervez juice. That is about the only reason I do the writs anyways.

    Coldharbor was great for me as above suggested, I was able to level all 3 within a few days just wandering around the Hollow City
  • Fudly_budly
    Sorry about the vagueness here but there's a fantastic farming spot in Stormhelm Rivenspire (where the bank is). After you do the DC city quest and clear the baddies in the upper level (where the palace is). Next to the palace is the manor of the head bad guy. It's three deserted floors of crates, bags, chests, baskets, barrels, shelves, nightstands, and stuff laying around. Nothing is owned so no fencing expense. If memory serves, I think there is even a fireplace on main floor.
    Next... tomatoes: two crates in Betnikh Orc Loose Tooth tavern(due west of wayshine opposite the ramp up to bank/craft area) Left hand room as you enter. Look for them on the top shelf opposite the fireplace. More tomatoes... in the first village, Hoarfrost Downs, East of Stormhelm. In the Inn... two crates of tomatoes.
    Finally, potatoes about 10-12 laying out. Betnikh as you look at zone map go to Grimsfield wayshrine at 9 o'clock from settlement - due west- run East from wayshrine about 50 paces. there's a wolf or two guarding a lean to camp and wagon potatoes all over. Bon Appetit'
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  • Papa_Lestat
    Soul Shriven
    Thanks @Truthsnark I had been looking everywhere but was unable to find garlic until your post. Good hunting my friend.
  • kgrizzle
    Is there any add on that auto loots a cluster of crates/sacks instead of having to loot each individual one? This is the most frustrating part aboit gathering crafting mats in my opinion. Sometimes the big groups of sacks/crates/etc stack on each other in a way thay it's annoying to individually find the hit box to loot them.

    I'm new to the game and enjoy the crafting system a lot except this part makes me feel like I'm wasting my time looting crates n stuff...

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