A barrel is a storage block that can be made in Minecraft in the place of a chest. It can be used to store any items and blocks.

It is very similar to a chest, but crafting it is a little different. It also varies between the two Minecraft versions, Java and Bedrock.

Other than storage, you can also use a barrel as a job site for a villager.

In this tutorial we will show you how to make a barrel in Minecraft and how to use it, too.

Java Minecraft Barrel Recipe

  • 6 wooden plank blocks (any wood)
  • 2 wooden slabs (any wood)

The Java edition recipe for a barrel is simple and very similar to a chest. It only replaces 2 planks with wooden slabs.

Any type of wood can be used for this, including the nether versions, warped and crimson wood.

To make a barrel, arrange the ingredients like you see in the image below.

Bedrock Minecraft Barrel Recipe

  • 6 sticks
  • 2 wooden slabs (any wood)

Unlike the Java edition recipe, the Bedrock recipe is a bit more resource friendly.

Instead of using 6 wood plank blocks, you use sticks alongside the 2 slabs. The arrangement is pretty much the same.

Finding a Barrel

A barrel will only naturally generate in a village.

Usually your safest bet for finding a barrel is in a village that is close to or surrounded by water. These types of villages are more likely to have a fisherman’s cottage.

A fisherman’s cottage will have anywhere from 1 to 3 empty barrels inside.

A fisherman villager usually sells fishing materials, like fishing rods.

How to Use a Barrel

A barrel has a very similar function as a chest, being a storage item. It has 27 slots, just like a single chest, but that is its limit.

Unlike a chest, a barrel can’t be enlarged or merged with other barrels.

Luckily, they also can’t be blocked the way chests can. If you place a solid block directly above a barrel it won’t stop you from opening it.

The barrel can also be placed down facing either up or to the side, based on where your character is when you place it.

Barrels are immune to lava and fire. They will burn, but otherwise can’t be destroyed by either.

In the Bedrock version you can move them with pistons, but otherwise have to rely on an axe or your hand to destroy them. Destroying a barrel will allow you to pick it up as well as drop all the items inside.

Interestingly enough, piglins in the nether will also react to barrels.

Any player interacting with a chest, either opening or destroying it, will be attacked by any nearby piglins.

Villager Job Site

A barrel can also be used as a job site for any unemployed villager in a village.

If you don’t have an unemployed villager available, you can either breed the villagers using food and providing an extra bed, or by simply spawning an extra villager in.

The barrel will grant the villager the fisherman profession.