What Minecraft Mob Gives the Most XP? – A Detailed Guide

Each mob in Minecraft offers up a different amount of XP depending on how difficult or common it is. Some you can drop in a few swipes, others take some serious planning.

If you want to know which mods and which critters you should be focusing on to maximize your XP gain, read on to find out which mobs are worth your time.

And when you’re done, be sure to check out our other Minecraft guides including how to build a kitchen in Minecraft, and if you’ve got a Steam Deck, here’s how to install Minecraft mods on Steam Deck.

7. Creeper – 5 XP

A screenshot of a Minecraft creeper taken from my main Minecraft world.

Mobs that give the same XP: Drowned, Husk, Stray, Skeleton, Wither Skeleton, Zombie, Zombie Villager, Witch, Illusioner, Pillager, Vex, Vindicator, Phantom, Shulker, Silverfish, Ghast, Hoglin, Zoglin, Warden

Health Points: 20

Difficulty: Easy if you’re careful

The Creeper is a Minecraft staple, and while most of us have dropped enough Creepers to fill a small planet, you shouldn’t underestimate how much of a solid XP source they are.

The best advice for new players is to avoid Creepers entirely, simply because they hit hard and, more importantly, can ruin your builds. It’s the ruining of builds that makes these guys such a menace to Minecraft societies.

How to Beat

For those of you who are more comfortable with combat, Creepers aren’t that difficult. The trick to any encounter is to know when they’re about to blow. Once the hissing becomes loud and they fatten up, that’s when they’ll pop.

Once this becomes second nature, you can time your swipes or shots to hit the Creeper in between its different phases.

Sure, there’s always a chance they’ll ruin your builds, but for easy XP, Creepers are well worth seeking out. Plus, at night, you can’t move five blocks without running into one. Seriously, if you want XP, don’t sleep, just pick a direction, grab a sword, and start slashing.

6. Baby Zombie – 12 XP

Screenshot of a Minecraft Baby Zombie taken in my main Minecraft world.

Mobs that give the same XP: Baby Zombified Piglin

Health Points: 10

Modifier: Extra 1-3 XP per piece of equipment

Baby Zombies are a nightmare. Their health isn’t high by any means, but the speed at which they move puts The Flash to shame.

Despite being lightning fast, Baby Zombies offer up a lot more XP than their larger counterparts. Compared with a regular Zombie, babies give over double the XP, making them a worthwhile foe to best should you see one.

Plus that extra XP modifier depending on how many items of armour or weapons they’re using can really add up.

How to Beat

Let’s be real, though, chances are if you come across a Baby Zombie, you’ll have to fight it, simply because you won’t be able to escape its speed.

If you’re down with getting cheap, just build up a couple of blocks and these smaller mobs won’t be able to reach you. Then just fire an endless stream of arrows into them and they’ll drop faster than Zombie flesh.

5. Slime – 4 XP (Large) 2 XP (Medium) 1 XP (Small)

A slime mob from Minecraft. Picture was taken in my main Minecraft world.

Mobs that give the same XP: Magma Cube

Slimes are both a nuisance and a blessing. Yes, having to take out a mob that spawns even more mobs the more you damage it is annoying. But with more slain mobs, comes more XP. What’s not to love?

There are two ways to find Slimes. The first – the most popular – is in swamp biomes. The second, in what’s known as ‘slime chunks’.

With the exception of mushroom fields, slime chunks can spawn anywhere in the world below Y=40. That’s why when you’re spelunking and minding your own business, these idiots turn up to get in the way.

While this can be a pain, it’s actually a good thing, as we can mine out an entire chunk in a 16×16 fashion and make a simple Slime farm.

How to Beat

Honestly? Slimes aren’t dangerous enough to need a careful playstyle and big brain tactic. Just grab a sword and keep swinging until nothing moves. It really is as simple as that.

4. Chicken Jockey – 12 XP (Mob) 10 XP (Hostile Chicken)

An armored baby zombie mob riding a chicken in my main Minecraft world.

Modifier: Extra 1-3 XP per piece of equipment

Chicken Jockeys are another nightmare to deal with. Thankfully, the chances of finding one aren’t exactly high.

You see, the chances of a Baby Zombie spawning on a chicken, in a chickenless environment, is just 0.25 percent. Phew. If you’ve got chickens nearby, though, that spawn rate increases to five percent. So, you know, maybe don’t keep chickens?

As the above shows, finding a Chicken Jockey isn’t a likely event. But because of the amount of XP both the mob and the chicken offer, they’re well worth taking out given the chance.

How to Beat

As with Baby Zombies, it’s all about speed. These things move fast. So if you want to live to tell the tale, one tactic is to snipe them from afar, while high up. If a mob can’t reach you, and you’ve got the arrows, you win every time. It’s just simple Minecraft maths. High ground plus bow equals win.

Just keep in mind if you see a baby mob riding a spider, there’s a chance it’ll climb up to you because spiders are monsters that shouldn’t exist.

3. Ravager – 20 XP

A Ravager mob from Minecraft. Screenshot grabbed from my main Minecraft world.

Mobs that give the same XP: Piglin Brute

I have a theory for Ravagers. Every encounter will either go so smoothly you’ll be overconfident, or everything goes wrong and OMG who designed these things?

If you’ve never felt the full brunt of a Ravager, play on hard mode. The difference in how hard they hit is wild.

On the upside, Ravagers offer up some of the best XP in Minecraft. 20 XP is a lot for what is, essentially, just another mob. Yeah, they can be deadly, but the reward far outweighs the risk.

How to Beat

Going one-on-one with a Ravager, especially on hard, is foolish. Unless you’ve got a Netherite sword with some killer upgrades, it’s not worth the risk. Especially with the illager on top also trying to end your run.

So, how do you beat a Ravager? Easy. Keep it ranged. If you haven’t got the Infinity enchantment on your bow, dropping a Ravager will take a fair few arrows to beat. With Infinity, however, you can just pelt it from a distance without ever needing to get within range of its attacks.

Better yet, build a little fort and snipe Ravagers and their illager friends from up top. Not only will you have cover, you’ll also be able to get angles on everything that’s coming at you. It’s a win/win solution.

2. The Wither – 50 XP

The Wither boss mob from Minecraft flying in the gray sky in my main Minecraft world.

Mobs that give the same XP: None

Ah, the Wither. The once-menacing boss that struck fear into the hearts of its victims. Nowadays? It’s not so much of a threat so long as you know what you’re doing.

For those who don’t know, you can summon the Wither by placing four blocks of soul sand in a ‘T’ shape. Then place three Wither Skeleton skulls along the top of the ‘T’ and stand back. No, seriously, stand back, it’s going to explode.

Although the Wither can be tricky to newcomers, at 50 XP per kill, it’s one of the best sources of XP in all of Minecraft.

How to Beat

Here’s how I do it: Dig all the way down to bedrock and hollow out a large area. The reason we’re doing this underground rather than in the overworld is all down to how the Wither moves. This thing flies, and above ground not only will it wreck everything in sight, you’ll also be constantly running after it.

By confining it underground, it’ll still trash everything, but it won’t be able to fly off into the sunset for a nice relaxing time-out.

As for the actual fighting, slash with a sword until half its health is gone, then back up and switch to a bow. Ranged is the only logical way to deal with it once it’s transformed, so don’t even bother trying to slash it.

Now, it’s not quite that simple. You’ll need a selection of enchanted apples. The general play is get hit, tank it, then when you’re at half health, eat an enchanted apple. Om nom nom.

The enchanted apple really is the difference-maker in this fight. So long as you can tank the damage, beating the Wither isn’t all that difficult.

1. The Ender Dragon – 12,000 XP

The Ender Dragon boss flying above my Sauron tower I built.

Mobs that give the same XP: None

She drops how much XP? 12,000! That is a ridiculous amount of XP. Nothing even comes close to offering this amount.

For real, if you’re after XP fast, go beat the Ender Dragon, there simply isn’t anything in Minecraft that gives the same amount of XP. Even when you respawn the Ender Dragon after you’ve beaten it the first time, you still net 500 XP per win. Even that on its own is a silly amount of XP.

12,000! Seriously, what madness is that?

How to Beat

Given how old Minecraft is, there are a host of different tactics to beating the Ender Dragon.

The straightforward method is to build up alongside each of the pillars and shoot the crystals. Shooting the crystals stops the Ender Dragon from regaining health, so it’s a must in this fight.

Just keep in mind, the crystals explode, so if you haven’t built something to catch you when you’re blown back, you’ll get yeeted from high up. In case this isn’t clear, that is quite bad.

From here it’s just a case of sniping the Ender Dragon and when it flies down into the middle area with the exit, start swiping at it.

The other tactic for those who like to live dangerously, grab a camp full of beds and when the Ender Dragon flies down to the middle area, drop a bed on top of the pillar and hit sleep. You can’t sleep in The End (or the Nether) which causes the bed to explode.

This will damage you as well, so be sure to bring enhanced apples, but it also damages the Ender Dragon, and on Java, you can finish the Ender Dragon off before it has a chance to heal.

Yes, this is by far the most dangerous tactic, but if you’ve felled the Ender Dragon more times than you can count, this is one super-fun and exciting way to do it.

How Much XP Does the Warden Drop?

Is the Warden worth fighting in Minecraft? Not really, no. Just run away. This super-tough mob drops a measly 5 XP when it’s beaten. I know, rubbish isn’t it?

If you do want to fight the Warden for whatever, reason, we’ve compiled five ways to easily beat the Warden in Minecraft.

It’s tricky, for sure, and not really worth all the effort for just 5 XP, but hey, it’s a fun challenge to overcome.

What Is the Easiest Minecraft Mob to Farm?

If you’re looking to set up an easy farm without needing to find an underground mob spawner, head to the Nether.

Seriously, Blazes in the Nether are a great source of XP and setting up a farm is really easy.

Blazes grant 10 XP when defeated, the same as a regular Creeper. The difference here is Blazes in the Nether are normally found near a Blaze spawner – a cage that continuously spawns Blazes.

By building some cover around the Blaze spawn, you can leave a one-block gap to shoot or swipe through. Yes, Blazes can burn you, but so long as you’ve got them confined to a specific area, you’ll be safe to run off and heal as and when you need to.

What Is XP Used For In Minecraft? XP Explained

Think of XP as a kind of currency. It’s useful for all the important things in your Minecraft life. Want to mend your favorite pickaxe? You’ll need XP. Want to enchant something? You guessed it, you’ll need XP.

If you’re curious about how you can use XP, the following list covers all the main uses.

  • Enchanting weapons
  • Enchanting armor
  • Merging two enchantment books to create an even stronger perk
  • Renaming equipment
  • Repairing equipment
  • Fuel for the ‘mending’ enchantment
  • Showing just how long it’s been since you were defeated

What Block Gives the Most XP in Minecraft

Believe it or not, the sculk catalyst is a fantastic source of XP. I know, shocking, right?

If you see a sculk catalyst, mine it. Each one is worth 20 XP per block, which is loads in Minecraft terms, and makes for a rather nice change from beating the Ender Dragon for the millionth time.

Why Trust Us?

How do I know which mobs give the most xp in Minecraft? Simply put, I’ve spent a lot of time covering, playing, and writing about Minecraft. I spent multiple years writing Minecraft books and magazines for Future Publishing, and you can find me writing about Minecraft on PC Gamer, VG24/7, IGN, TechRadar, and a host of other places online. I’ve also got two kids who were brought up on Minecraft, so to say I’ve played it a lot would be an understatement.

For this guide in particular, as you can see from the custom images, I went and hacked down a selection of different mobs and enemies and measured how much xp each of them dropped. I then compiled this guide to bring you, the reader, information about which mods are worth farming and which aren’t. 

All images were captured on PS5 hardware.

Wesley Copeland
Wesley Copeland

Wesley Copeland is a gaming, tech, and toys journalist with over 10 years of experience writing online. Originally starting in video games before specializing in tech and toys, you can find his bylines at IGN, VG24/7, Kotaku, Tech Radar, Games Radar, PC Gamer, Heavy, and many more. He's also highly passionate about how tech can be used to better our day-to-day lives.