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Tuesday, December 5, 2023

The best Stardew Valley mods in 2022

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Looking for Stardew Valley mods to freshen up your farming? While it might feel like there’s a new imitator every week, sometimes you can’t beat the original. Even six years past its release in 2016, Stardew Valley’s still proving it—with hordes of players still flocking to the country life simulator. And thanks to a devoted modding scene, Stardew only ever gets a bigger crop of custom offerings, ranging from quality of life adjustments to total overhauls. Plus, by the sounds of things, the modding community might be enjoying some new tools: in a June 2022 tweet, Stardew’s dev said the eventual 1.6 update would be focused on “making modders’ lives easier.”

Stardew Valley Guides

Stardew Valley mods: Custom farming
Stardew Valley co-op: Farm with friends
Games like Stardew Valley: More life sims
Best indie games: Our mixtape to you

So, whether you want to renovate your farm into a colorful flower paradise, hire an an army of robots to tend your crops, swap to anime character portraits, or you just need reminders of when its a bad idea to plant a crop, this list will be your guide. There are even more to be found at the Nexus Mods page or the Stardew Valley Mod forum, both of which get amazing creations all the time. 

Even without mods, Stardew Valley is one of the best laptop games to play on a low-spec machine. An important thing to note before jumping in is that Stardew Valley does still get updates. Since there isn’t any official mod support, there’s a chance that mods will break or need to be reinstalled after updates. 

It’s smart to back-up any files you are going to modify in case you need to revert the changes. And back up your save data just to be safe. It can be found by default at C:\Users\[USERNAME]\AppData\Roaming\StardewValley\Saves.

Stardew Valley Gameplay Mods

Stardew Valley Expanded

Download from: Nexus Mods

Stardew Valley Expanded is one of the biggest Stardew mods out there and it really does feel like a proper Stardew Valley expansion. It adds tons of new characters with their own backstories and events. It adds new farm maps and tons of new in game locations too. Those are just the big changes. SDVE comes with plenty of smaller tweaks too and if any mod is worth starting Stardew over for, it’s this one.


Download from: Nexus Mods

Automation is the future! If you want to add a little sci-fi styling to your sleepy farmdom, Farmtronics by Joe Strout grants you with your very own army of robots who can water crops, plants seeds, and just generally care for your farm while you’re doing other stuff. To receive your first automaton in the mail, you’ll have to complete the ToDo tasks on the Farmtronics Home Computer that’ll be added to your TV. After that, you can purchase more bots from Pierre’s Shop.

Farm Extended

Download from: Nexus Mods

For those of us who really struggle to choose a farm type when starting a new farm, Farm Extended gives the standard farm benefits of all the specialty farms. The extended farm features dedicated areas for fishing, foraging, and mining as well as fenced areas designed to keep animals from escaping. Modder Forkmaster also added a minecart stop behind the farmhouse for quick travel to other parts of town directly from home. 

Attractive Standard Farm

Download from: Nexus Mods

Here’s another excellent standard farm redesign, though this one is focused on being cute instead of efficient. This farm map has lots of designated crop fields in different sizes, a few ponds, and just a couple nooks for tucking buildings. It’s definitely for the farmers who want a really lovely piece of land but aren’t as worried about maximizing profits.

You may spot that this farm screenshot is using some alternate textures too. You’ll find Flower Valley in the visual mods section.

Stardew Aquarium

Download from: Nexus Mods

This unreasonably awesome add-on made by a talented group of modders adds an entire aquarium to the game. Just like in Animal Crossing, fish you donate to the aquarium become exhibits that you can see for yourself. The aquarium itself is located in a new beach area that can be accessed via the train in Pelican Town.

Ellie’s Ideal Greenhouse

Download from: Nexus Mods

There are a ton of mods for expanding the greenhouse, most of which are excessively large. Ellie’s redesign is very balanced and offers three different greenhouse redesigns, from the modest one above to a larger two room building. You can spruce up your greenhouse with simply a better laid out central plot and tree planting spaces or go for a large second orchard room.

For yet another greenhouse option, the Oasis Greenhouse mod by DaisyNiko is a more aesthetic design that also adds a spa and wine cellar.

Animal Husbandry

Download from: Nexus Mods

The Animal Husbandry mod, formerly known as the Butcher Mod, allows you to turn your animal friends into their component meat parts. If you don’t care for using the meat cleaver on your cute little hogs, modder Digus added a “softmode” that changes the cleaver into a Meat Wand that lets you “exchange your animals for meat that grows on trees on another dimension.” It also adds a new animal contest event to participate in.

PPJA’s Cannabis Kit and more food mods

Download from: Nexus Mods

“Mayor Lewis has recently passed legislation allowing you to now grow cannabis on your farm!” says modder Paradigmnomad. Cannabis Kit adds a number of cannabis strains that can be bought from Harvey and Pierre during the summer and fall. Your mature cannabis plants can be crafted with original Stardew Valley artisan machines to produce products like hemp cloth and cannabis oil. 

There are a ton of other mods by Paradigmnomad adding more recipes, crops, and items. There are slews of artisan goods and even trees that grow meat. They are no longer being updated, but appear to still be operational with Stardew Valley version 1.5.


Download from: Nexus Mods

Does what it says on the tin: Skateboard adds a skateboard. Not sure why you’d need any more info than that, but it’s a craftable item that requires a modest collection of materials, after which you’re free to shred at a moment’s notice with just a right-click. Your skateboard’s a little clumsier than walking in exchange for faster travel, but hey—so’s a real skateboard, for most of us.

The mod’s creator also recommends their Yet Another Jump Mod, which not only helps untangle yourself after skating into a corner, but also lets you do sick tricks.

The Love of Cooking

Download from: Nexus Mods

This mod is for people who really do love cooking and want it to matter more in Stardew Valley. It adds new recipes, a search function, and the ability to toggle using high-quality ingredients. It even changes healing so that eating foods heals over time instead of instantly. There’s even a new community center challenge that unlocks kitchen upgrades. 


Download from: Nexus Mods

The Automate mod is a huge boon to productivity on the farm that reminds me of complicated redstone machinery in Minecraft. Automate allows you to pair chests with machines that automatically pull raw materials from a connected chest and push the output back into the same chest. Smarter folks than me will be able to chain together complex interactions that save you from running about your farm to fill up machines all day. 

Tractor Mod

Download from: Nexus Mods

Modern farmers rejoice! No longer does escaping to the countryside mean you must also submit to ancient farming techniques. The Tractor Mod allows you to purchase a tractor that performs the same functions as many of your basic farm tools but faster. It does everything from tilling dirt to breaking rocks to planting seeds, all from the comfort of a cushy seat. It’s a very expensive upgrade, as tractors are, but once you’ve bought that garage you’ll never have to plant by hand again.

Teh’s Fishing Overhaul

Download from: Nexus Mods

Stardew Valley is one of few games where I don’t outright detest the fishing minigame, but Teh’s Fishing Overhaul makes the experience that much better. It adds the possibility for fish to be unaware of you, making them easier to catch, and rewards you for consecutive perfect catches as well. I’ll still never choose the riverland farm map, but this overhaul will certainly make grabbing those fishing achievements less painful. 

Free Love

Download from: Nexus Mods

Choosing a paramour from all of Pelican Town’s eligible individuals is a struggle every time I start a new game. Abigail speaks to my nerdy little heart but doesn’t poor Shane deserve to be saved from the clutches of JojaMart? Free Love is the Stardew 1.5 successor to the former Multiple Spouses mod which now allows you to have many living situations like a roommate and a spouse or multiple spouses.

Platonic Partners

Download from: Nexus Mods

For the exact opposite of the Multiple Spouses mod, the Platonic Partners mod lets you have a 10-heart level relationship with marriage candidates without getting married. Final relationship events for each character have been edited to reflect your close personal relationship. You can also still live together or co-parent children, just without the romantic component.

Romanceable Rasmodius

Download from: Nexus Mods

I’ve never been inclined to marry Rasmodius the wizard, but apparently modder WerewolfMaster was so inspired after playing another mod, Wizard Narrative Overhaul. Romanceable Rasmodius builds on the narrative overhaul created by Haywrites to turn him into a marriage candidate complete with heart events, post-marriage dialogue, and festival dialogue that references your relationship. I suspect this would pair well with a mod that changes Rasmodius’s portrait to make him look a little more age appropriate for your young-adult farmer. 

Stardew Valley Visual Mods

Stardew Anime Mods 

Download from: Nexus Mods

Stardew Anime Mods is one of the most popular portrait mods for Stardew, for good reason. Its detailed and brightly colored pixel work fits in great with default Stardew Valley. 

DCBurger’s Portrait Mod

Download from: Nexus Mods

My own favorite portrait mod is DCBurger’s Portrait Mod, unlike the many, many anime-style character edits and gender swaps, DCBurger’s portraits are grittier. All of the characters have a darker style with square jaws and more masculine features. They may not exactly fit in with the original version of Pelican Town, but they’re a nice break from the cuteness. These portraits rely on the Portraiture mod that allows for higher resolution character portraits.

Fisharia Anime Portraits

Download from: Nexus Mods

Another excellent anime portrait mod is the set by Fisharia with an even cuter, cartoon-y feel than some other Stardew anime mods. This set covers all of Stardew’s cast, going so far as to give some of them pretty wild anime hairstyles. 

Diverse Stardew Valley

Download from: Mod Drop

Stardew Valley has a great cast of characters, but this mod remixes them by adding more diverse body types, ethnicities, and genders. Once downloaded, you can choose whether to keep the original model for each character or switch to the more diverse one. If you do make the switch, not only will the character model change, but they’ll also get their own seasonal outfits, swimming costume, maternity outfits when pregnant, and a handful of other additions. Even better, the characters you don’t switch will still be eligible for other mods.

Monster Valley 

Download from: Nexus Mods

Games about dating monsters and swords and birds have worked their way into gaming mainstream lately and Monster Valley carries in their freaky footsteps. “Ever wanted to date a demon? Seduce a slime girl? Marry a merman?” Asks modder Blizzriel. “Well, now you can!” Monster Valley changes both the portraits and sprites of Pelican Town’s most eligible and their families into spooky alternatives. Sebastian and Robin become demons, while Maru and Demetrius are patchwork dolls. Elliott, of course, is a merman. 

Backpacks & Baubles

Download from: Nexus Mods

This Stardew Valley mod by PeacefulEnd aims to give you the fanciest backpack around. You can choose from multiple designs, change the colour, add dynamic lighting with a lantern, or even carry a backpack that gets bigger as your inventory gets fuller. There is also a selection of baubles that will float alongside you as you stroll around. It’s a little change, but considering how often you have a backpack, it’s a mod that amounts to a fun and flavourful addition.

Empty Spouse Room

Download from: Nexus Mods

While I love all of Stardew’s spouses, I’m always a bit disappointed when my sweetheart moves in and totally trashes the aesthetic of my house with their own weird hobby room. Marriage is all about compromise, but the sanctity of my decor isn’t an area where I’m willing to meet in the middle. My problems are solved with the empty spouse room mod, which gives me the ability to impose my own decor on my partner.

Flower Valley

Download from: kayainsdv.postype

When it comes to building retextures, Flower Valley is one of the prettiest, which makes its popularity no surprise. This mod redesigns all your farm buildings, Pelican Town, and trees all over the valley with seasonal flowers. It’s a fever dream of florals right out of a fairytale.

Slime Rancher

Download from: Nexus Mods

Inspired by Stardew Valley’s delightful space cousin Slime Rancher, this mod replaces the visuals for every farm animal (other than fish) with an animal-themed slime equivalent. It’s just a cosmetic treatment, though—your livestock will retain all their harvestable features in their new ooze-y state. If you’re just interested in replacing a some animals or your pet, the mod has optional versions that only swap out livestock, pets, or horses, respectively.

The Pinkpocalypse

I should not be shocked by the number of mods that specifically turn various elements of Stardew Valley into cotton-candy pink. To start with, turn all of Stardew’s dialogue boxes and inventory screens pink with The Pink Interface. Follow that up with Cute Valley Pink and More Buildings for Cute Valley which together pink-ify all of your farms buildings, interiors, tools, and machines. Do you want pink sheep? Of course you do. Why have scarecrows when you can have a bunch of adorable catcrows instead? 

Cuter Fatter Cows 

Download from: Nexus Mods

Cuter Fatter Cows turns Stardew Valley’s bovines into plumper versions with rosy cheeks meant to look like the cows of Harvest Moon. A number of modders have created new animal sprites but these are by far my favorite. Modder Identitypollution has released an update to Cuter Fatter Cows which includes all of their cuter and fatter animal retextures for goats, chickens, and more.

Stardew Valley Utility & Cheat Mods

NPC Map Locations

Download from: Nexus Mods

This is a utility that you’ll never want to be without once you add it. Pelican Town’s residents never seem to be where you expect when you need them most, so this mod shows you on your map exactly where they are at all times. No longer will you be pacing back and forth in Marnie’s shop while she’s clearly attending yoga at Pierre’s.

Add Berry Seasons to Calendar

Download from: Nexus Mods

Though it’s just a little change, Add Berry Seasons to Calendar by Inmognito is handy because it does just that, letting you track the berry and shell seasons so you know when to head out and harvest. It features the Salmonberry season in Spring, the beach forage in Summer, and the Blackberry season in Fall.

Farmer Helper

Download from: Nexus Mods

This handy Stardew Valley mod by Aedenthorn is a must-have for any farmer. It can tell you when seeds are too late in the season to be planted, and even prevent late planting if you turn on the functionality. Farmer Helper can also give reminders for when plants require harvesting or watering before sleep, and can even prompt you to put your animals back inside for the night. 

UI Info Suite

Download from: Nexus Mods

There’s a lot to keep track of on the farm and sometimes you just can’t remember when you planted your cauliflower or whether or not you pet your sheep this morning. The UI Info Suite contains a lot of useful game information that doesn’t quite cross into cheating territory. Animals that need to be milked or pet have icons over their head. On mouse over, plants will display their name and days until they can be harvested. The Info Suite has a number of other useful features perfect if you’re a forgetful farmer.  

Jump Over

Download from: Nexus Mods

Do you place gates for your fences based on what looks nice instead of what’s actually practical? You can stop walking all the way around your fenced in fields and make life a whole lot easier with Jump Over. Does precisely what it says on the tin.  

Gift Taste Helper

Download from: Nexus Mods

If you constantly have to Alt+Tab out of your game because you cannot for the life of you remember which gifts to give to Caroline and Evelyn, Gift Taste Helper keeps you from having to leave the game to get answers. This mod adds a tooltip with a villager’s favorite items when you mouse over them in the relationships menu or their birthday on the calendar. If suddenly becoming omniscient in the ways of gifts feels a little too cheaty for you, modder Tstaples has added a progression version of the mod where you’ll only know a villager’s preferred gifts if you’ve successfully discovered them yourself through trial and error. 

Categorize Chests

Download from: Nexus Mods

By year two of any Stardew farm, I’ve typically got an entire fleet of chests housing all of my excess fruits, building materials, and rarecrows. Each one has a specific spread of items known only to me from an inventory list that exists only in my head. Categorize Chests allows you to make sense of the madness by dictating exactly which items go in which chests and putting only those items in it with just one button press each time you open it. I’ve never felt so organized. 

In-Game Cheat Menu

Download from: Nexus Mods

This is a very far complex and impressive mod that adds an extensive cheat menu inside the game. You can teleport anywhere, adjust your skill levels on the fly, change the weather, freeze time, give yourself money, increase movement speed, turn on god mode, adjust fishing difficulty, make your watering can never run out, and a whole heck of a lot more—all from within the game. The cheat menu actually has some features of other mods on this list built in, so if you liked the look of some of the mods on the previous page, they may be covered here.

BJS – Time Skipper

Download from: Nexus Mods

Sometimes you get to year five of a farm and have achieved just about everything aside from amassing a fortune. When you’ve got nothing to do but watch your crops grow, BJS Time Skipper lets you use an Elder Scrolls-esque time waiting function where you choose the number of days you’d like to skip and then watch the days fly by.

Night Owl

Download from: Nexus Mods

If you need more time in your day to farm, the one surefire way to get it is just not sleeping! Stardew Valley forces your farmer to pass out at 2am if they haven’t gone to bed yet. With the Night Owl mod, you can stay up forever and never sleep. The game will save at 6am by making it look like you’re passing out, but unlike the main game you won’t lose items or be forced back home again.

Custom Warps

Download from: Nexus Mods

Custom Warps adds a menu to Stardew Valley where you can set and travel to any tile on the game map. It’s a cheesy solution to the problem of walking or riding around town, but a cool mod nevertheless! 


Download from: Nexus Mods

Do you ever remember to shut the doors to your barns and coops at night? I don’t. No matter what I do, I always seem to leave my poor animals out in the cold on rainy days. AutoAnimalDoors does the remembering for you by automatically opening and shutting all barns and coops each day. It’s a small but life-saving change. 

Stardew Valley Save Editor

Download from: Nexus Mods

This save editor is a separate tool, not technically a mod, that allows you to adjust certain variables about your save file without having to dig around in a text editor. Sure, you could use it to cheat money and power into your game, but it also lets you do more difficult things than that. The save editor can be used to cheat your way through the game, but it can also be used to subtly adjust variables that you couldn’t control any other way, making it a valuable tool even for those of us using no mods at all.

Stardew Valley Multiplayer Mods

Cabin Owner Displayed

Download from: Nexus Mods

If you’re running an operation with several other farmer friends, it can be tough to keep track of which houses belong to which friends. Cabin Owner Displayed is a quick fix that shows the name of a cabin’s owner when you enter. No more pranking the wrong friend by accident.

Multiplayer Backpacks

Download from: Nexus Mods

Another useful way to keep tabs on your multiplayer friends is the Multiplayer Backpacks mod which lets you see what all your fellow farmers are carrying with them. Ideally you can use it to plan better as a group but if you just need it to figure out who’s been hoarding all the hoes, it can do that too. 

Unlimited Players

Download from: Nexus Mods

Now that Stardew Valley’s official multiplayer support is out, we no longer need the Makeshift Multiplayer mod, but there are always greater heights for mod makers to aspire to. Unlimited Players removes the cap on cabins that can be built on a farm and the limit on number of farmers that can join a session. Only the player hosting the multiplayer session needs to install Unlimited Players, meaning you may be able to surprise some strangers with overpopulated farms. 

Always On Server

Download from: Nexus Mods

This mod puts the farm host into a deep slumber, allowing the world to continue running without them playing. This allows for the rest of your farmers to play even when the host isn’t present, and the mod is smart enough to pause the action when no one’s active so time won’t pass. The host will have to leave the game running on their computer, but that’s a small price to pay for a farm that never sleeps.

Warp To Friends

Download from: Nexus Mods

Warp to Friends adds an additional menu to Stardew Valley showing the location of all other farmhands and a button for warping directly to them. Especially useful for helping out new friends if they get lost or need help deep in the mines. 

Stardew Valley mods: how to install them

How to install Stardew Valley mods

Adding mods to Stardew Valley can be very straightforward if there are only a couple you want to use. Many are installed just by placing the downloaded files in the “Mods” folder in your Stardew Valley directory. If you’re playing through Steam, the default location is “C:\Steam\steamapps\common\Stardew Valley”. If you only want a couple handy mods, make sure to check the installation instructions and dependencies and then toss them in your mods folder. That’s it!

Some mods might require some important foundational mods like SMAPI below. If you want to install quite a few mods, or switch back and forth between different groups of mods for different save files, the Stardrop mod manager is the handiest way to do so in 2022.

Stardew Modding API (SMAPI)

Mods that make more complex changes may require the “Stardew Modding API”, or SMAPI for short. This is a community-made API that is frequently being updated and allows you to use DLL mods. You can download the latest version of SMAPI from its website and find a pretty thorough walkthrough on how to install it (and keep your Steam achievements enabled while using it) over on the Stardew Valley wiki. SMAPI does check for mod conflicts and updates, but if you want a really familiar feeling mod managing tool then you’ll want to use Stardrop too.

Stardew Valley Content Patcher

Many current Stardew Valley mods are compatible with Content Patcher, a tool which loads a whole host of mods without changing the XNB files, making install and uninstall easier, as well as reducing the likelihood of conflicts between mods. Content Patcher can be unzipped into Stardew Valley’s “mods” folder in the same location dictated above. You can then run Stardew Valley with SMAPI.

Stardrop mod manager

In 2022, the open-source mod manager Stardrop is definitely one of the easiest ways to manage big groups of mods. The open-source project is still in open beta but is already very familiar if you’ve used a community mod manager for other games. It lets you set up different profiles for easily swapping between mod groups, checks for updates, and incompatibility. You can follow along on getting started in its installation guide.

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