A life of farming in Stardew Valley is incredibly fulfilling, but as you get further in the game, you might begin to feel like something’s missing. You already have the beginnings of a successful farm… So what could possibly fill that void? Someone to spend this incredible life with! Get ready to buy that Mermaid’s Pendant; it’s time to woo the villager of your dreams.
A few key points to remember when courting your co-farmer:
- Loved gifts will give the most friendship points (which are needed to increase your heart rating).
- You can only give each person two gifts per week, unless it’s their birthday
- Giving a gift on their birthday gives you 8x the points, and giving them a gift during the Feast of the Winter Star gives 5x the points (you can only give them a gift if they’re your secret giftee).
- Once you unlock the movie theater, bring them to a movie they like and buy them a preferred snack while you’re there for some bonus friendship points.
- There are five universally-loved gifts: pearls, the Golden Pumpkin, Prismatic Shards, rabbit’s feet, and Magic Rock Candy (the only exceptions being Haley, who hates Prismatic Shard; and Penny, who hates rabbit’s feet).
Keeping those general tips in mind, here’s a complete list of the marriage candidates and how to win their hearts.
Updated on June 17, 2021 by Michael Christopher: Since this post was initially published, Stardew Valley has received a ton of new content. We’ve refreshed it to make it more readable and up to date.
Abigail is the alternative and rebellious girl of Stardew and one of the popular villager choices to marry. She lives with her parents at Pierre’s General Store but can usually be found in the rain chasing frogs or at Pelican Town’s cemetery. Her mother might worry about her “alternative lifestyle,” but maybe her quirkiness is just what you’re looking for.
There are a few options to increase your heart rating with her, but the best option would be to start mining. She loves Amethysts, which isn’t a surprise when you find out she eats crystals (a running joke in the fan community). Amethysts are pretty easy to come by in the mines and that makes them the best choice for gaining her hand, as you can start gifting them pretty early on!
Birthday: Fall 13
- Banana Pudding
- Blackberry Cobbler
- Chocolate Cake
- Spicy Eel
Alex is the sporty, gridball-loving himbo of Stardew Valley. He enjoys spending his time with his dog, Dusty, and hanging out on the beach. On the outside, he seems like your typical jock… But is he? If you want to find out, Alex might be the match for you!
He likes Eggs, which is the best way to win him over as you’ll be able to produce them earlier in the game. Another option would be the Salmon Dinner, found as a rotating stock item in the Stardrop Saloon.
Birthday: Summer 13
- Complete Breakfast
- Salmon Dinner
Are you a hopeless romantic? If the answer is yes, look no further for your future spouse. Elliott is a writer who lives alone in his cabin by the sea, working on his novel and dreaming of a life that could be.
Given that writing poetry is not an option, the next best gift would be finding one of his favorite things: Lobster. Your best bet is going to be working on getting your crab pots set up at the ocean as soon as possible, since you can use them to catch Lobsters and land yourself a man.
Birthday: Fall 5
- Crab Cakes
- Duck Feathers
- Squid Ink
- Tom Kha Soup
Emily is a part-time worker at the Stardrop Saloon and an aspiring seamstress. She’ll let you know that she made a lot of her own clothes herself and that she wishes to make a career in fashion. She’s a bit kooky and loves crystals, dancing, and daydreaming about colorful places.
While she does love receiving Cloth as a gift, that’s a bit difficult to come by if you haven’t made upgrades to your farm yet. Instead, try offering her Amethyst and Topaz. Both are loved gifts and are found on all floors of the mine. You can also gift her Quartz, but it’s only a liked gift and not loved.
Birthday: Spring 27
- Survival Burgers
Haley, sister to Emily, spent her high school years being popular and her family’s wealth only added to the fact that she’s a bit on the vain side. Maybe there’s more than meets the eye? Only one way to find out; you’ve gotta get those heart! Fair warning, though, winning her heart isn’t easy, but it is worth it to see her blossom as a person.
She’s a bit more difficult than some of the other candidates, as her loved-gifts are items that aren’t easily found in the early parts of the game. Your best bets would be checking the Stardrop Saloon’s rotating stock for Pink Cake and stocking up on Daffodils you find while foraging.
Birthday: Spring 14
- Fruit Salad
- Pink Cake
If you’ve ever passed out from exhaustion, you’ve probably woken up to Harvey’s smiling face. He’s the town doctor and ever-passionate about the villagers following a healthy lifestyle. He loves AM radio, aviation, and exercising. He spends a lot of his time working, so it comes as no surprise that one of his loved gifts is Coffee.
Coffee is easily obtained from Gus at the Stardrop Saloon, which also makes Harvey an easier-accessed candidate early on in the game. If you want a free route, you can always seek out seasonal forages. Just be mindful not to give him a Salmonberry or a Spice Berry, as he hates those.
Birthday: Winter 14
- Super Meals
- Truffle Oil
Another artist of Pelican Town, Leah spends her time painting in her cabin near Marnie’s farm. Unlike her male counterpart, Elliott, Leah is a little more introverted. A former city girl, she loves hiking, sketching in nature, and living off the land. If you’re looking for someone who would love the farming lifestyle, Leah’s a perfect choice.
Finding seasonal forages are a fast and efficient way to building up hearts with Leah, as she loves creating meals with them. Another option is Salad, easily purchased from the Stardrop Saloon. You’ll be planning that wedding in no time!
Birthday: Winter 23
- Goat Cheese
- Poppyseed Muffins
- Stir Fry
- Vegetable Medley
Maru is another great candidate, as she’s not only lovely but she’s got brains, too. Being the daughter of Demetrius, Maru inherited a lot of his knack for the sciences and spends her time inventing new creations. She’s usually found working on some gadget, in her dad’s lab, or working part-time as a nurse at the clinic.
If that doesn’t scare you off, then here’s what you need to win Maru over: invest in a furnace, as she loves Gold Bars. You can easily get the materials needed to craft them and stock them up to use as her twice-a-week gifts.
Birthday: Summer 10
- Battery Packs
- Cheese Cauliflower
- Gold Bars
- Iridium Bars
- Miner’s Treat
- Pepper Poppers
- Radioactive Bars
- Rhubarb Pie
Penny is one of the more reserved and quiet villagers. A bookworm, she’s often found with Vincent and Jas, as she’s their tutor. When she’s not educating, she’s often at home trying her hand at cooking or cleaning the small trailer she lives in. Penny’s more on the shy side, but she’s very sweet.
Due to her love of cooking, her favorite gifts are food-related. The easiest choice would be scouting out the Saloon for Tom Kha Soup, as it rotates in stock. Otherwise, she likes Dandelions and those can easily be found while foraging in the Spring.
Birthday: Fall 2
- Poppyseed Muffins
- Red Plate
- Roots Platter
- Tom Kha Soup
Pelican Town’s resident musician! Sam is good friends with Sebastian and Abigail and the trio is often found together, playing in their band or hanging at the Saloon. When he’s not with his friends, Sam is typically skateboarding or playing his guitar in his room.
Pizza and Joja Cola make him happiest. Pizza is available for purchase at the Stardrop Saloon. You can typically find Joja Cola very easily by fishing or rummaging through the trash, but it’s also sold at JojaMart and from the vending machine inside the Saloon.
Birthday: Summer 17
- Cactus Fruit
- Maple Bars
Next on the list is Sebastian, Pelican Town’s broody loner. He’s another popular choice for marriage, which becomes more and more obvious as you follow through his heart events. He loves to play video games and read comics, something that he spends most of his time doing… in his room, where he also works as a programmer. You’ll often find him out late at night, hanging at the docks at the beach, or standing by the mountain lake.
You can’t access his room until you reach two hearts, so it’s best to find his usual hangouts early on. To raise those hearts, spend a lot of time in the mines. He loves Frozen Tears and Obsidian, which will boost his friendship points higher. He likes Quartz, too, which works, but not as well.
Birthday: Winter 10
- Frozen Tears
- Pumpkin Soup
- Void Eggs
Ah, Shane. You might be wondering why he’s worth the time and effort, after all those rude encounters you have with him. Underneath that gruff exterior lies the heart of a sweet man who is a fantastic partner to those willing to get to know him. He’s a bit of a fixer-upper, but winning his heart is absolutely worth the effort. You’ll have to gain more hearts with him to really learn his story.
One thing you will learn is that he loves chickens. That’s why one of his best gift choices is Eggs. They aren’t a loved gift but they’re so easy to come by that it makes them a good choice. You can also purchase Beer and Pizza at the Saloon, as he loves those too.
Birthday: Spring 20
- Hot Peppers
- Pepper Poppers
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