Minecraft: How to Make an Iron Golem

A player spawning an Iron Golem in a field.

Key Takeaway

You'll need to make an Iron Golem by placing blocks in the world as opposed to using a Crafting Table. Start by placing 4 Blocks of Iron in a T-shape and then top it off with either a Pumpkin, Carved Pumpkin, or Jack o'Lantern. What you can use for your golem's head will depend on whether you're playing the Java Edition or Bedrock Edition of Minecraft.

To make an Iron Golem in Minecraft, you’ll need some Blocks of Iron and a Pumpkin of some sort. You’ll also need to assemble your Iron Golem in the world, as there is no crafting recipe for them.

Table Of Contents

    How to Assemble an Iron Golem

    4 Blocks of Iron in a T-shape with a Carved Pumpkin on top.

    The configuration for spawning an Iron Golem is pretty simple, albeit resource intensive. You’ll need 4 Blocks of Iron and either a Pumpkin, a Carved Pumpkin, or a Jack o’Lantern.

    First, start by placing a Block of Iron on the ground. Then, place the second Block of Iron on top of the first. Afterward, place the third Block of Iron on the left side of the second one. Next, place the fourth Block of Iron on the right side of the second one.

    Finally, place a Pumpkin, a Carved Pumpkin, or a Jack o’Lantern on top of the second Block of Iron. It’s important to finish with the Pumpkin (or Pumpkin variant), as your Iron Golem will otherwise not come to life.

    It should also be mentioned that you can only use a Carved Pumpkin or a Jack o’Latern to create an Iron Golem in the Java Edition. However, in the Bedrock Edition of the game, you can use either of the aforementioned or a regular Pumpkin.

    How to Get Blocks of Iron

    To make a Block of Iron, you’ll need to fill all 9 slots of the grid on a Crafting Table with Iron Ingots. Alternatively, you can sometimes find Blocks of Iron in the Chests of Bastion Remnants in The Nether.

    Where to Find Pumpkins

    Pumpkins can spawn on grass blocks in almost any biome. However, the area needs to be free of obstructions—including grass blocks and flowers. In every chunk, there is just over a 3% chance that Pumpkins will generate. Additionally, Pumpkins can also spawn in Woodland Mansions and Pillager Outposts. Furthermore, in Taiga and Snowy Taiga Villages, Pumpkins will spawn in place of Hay Bales.

    How to Make Carved Pumpkins and Jack o’Lanterns

    To make a Carved Pumpkin, you’ll need to use Shears on a Pumpkin that has been placed. This will cause a spooky little face to appear on your Pumpkin and will give you some Pumpkin Seeds.

    For a Jack o’Lantern, you’ll need to combine a Carved Pumpkin and a Torch. On a Crafting Table, place the Carved Pumpkin in the middle slot. Afterward, place a Torch below it to get a Jack o’Lantern.

    Common Problems When Spawning an Iron Golem

    The configuration to make an Iron Golem with a block of grass adjacent to it. The block of grass has a red circle around it.

    In order for your Iron Golem to come to life, the area immediately around it needs to be completely clear of blocks. Even small blocks that you can walk through will stop your Iron Golem from spawning. Grass, flowers, and everything else will get in your way—so make sure to clear them out.

    Furthermore, make sure the space around the golem’s head is also free from interfering blocks. Despite being made of metal, Iron Golems can still suffocate. As such, if they come to life and their head gets stuck in a block, they will continuously lose health until you free them or they die.

    Where to Find Naturally-Generated Iron Golems

    An Iron Golem peacefully walking around in a Village.

    Iron Golems can naturally spawn in larger Villages, however, the criteria are quite specific. In the Java Edition of the game, there need to be at least 5 Villagers gossiping or 3 Villagers panicking for one of them to summon an Iron Golem. On top of this, there needs to be a space free from obstructions for the Iron Golem to appear.

    As for in the Bedrock Edition, Iron Golems can only be summoned in Villages with at least 20 Beds and 10 Villagers. Furthermore, at least 75% of these Villagers must have worked in the past day and 100% of them need to have their own Bed.

    Iron Golem Spawns in Pillager Outposts

    You can also find imprisoned Iron Golems in Pillager Outposts. These golems will be locked in cages made from wood. If you free them, the Iron Golem will immediately start attacking nearby Pillagers, but will not intentionally harm you.

    The Uses for Iron Golems

    An Iron Golem attacking a Skeleton at night in a Village.

    The main use for an Iron Golem is as a defender. Since these metal men have 50 Hearts of health, they are pretty tough and can take a lot of punishment. In terms of attack strength, Iron Golems will do somewhere between 3 to 11 Hearts of damage to enemy mobs.

    What Mobs Iron Golems Will Attack

    Iron Golems will actively seek out and kill every kind of hostile mob except Creepers. As such, placing Iron Golems around your base will keep you safe from most foes. When an Iron Golem takes out a mob, the mob will still drop items. This can make Iron Golems helpful when you’re hunting for mob drops.

    Thankfully, the Iron Golems that you spawn will never attack you, even if you hit them. However, Village Iron Golems are not nearly as tolerant. Even if you accidentally hit a Village’s Iron Golem once, they will relentlessly attack you until you’re dead.

    It’s also worth mentioning that Iron Golems can attack through walls that are only 1 block wide. As such, if you aggro an Iron Golem and are trying to get away from them, you’ll need to separate yourself from them by at least 2 blocks to avoid taking damage.

    What Mobs Can Trigger Iron Golem Attacks

    For most other mobs, Iron Golems will leave them alone…unless provoked. If a Llama, Pufferfish, Snow Golem, or Wolf accidentally deals damage to an Iron Golem, the golem will not hesitate to take them out.

    Interestingly, Villagers also fall into this category. However, the only way that a Villager can accidentally deal damage to an Iron Golem is when a Villager sets off some Fireworks. If the Fireworks hit the Iron Golem and deal damage, the golem will attack whichever Villager set off the Fireworks.

    How Iron Golems Treat Their Friends

    On occasion, an Iron Golem will generate a Poppy in one of their hands. When they do, they will sometimes offer the flower to nearby Villagers. Sadly, Iron Golems will not offer players any flowers. You’ll just have to go out into the wilderness and pick your own.

    This is likely a reference to the Studio Ghibli film Laputa: Castle in the Sky, where the iron golems on the eponymous castle offer the protagonists a flower when they first encounter them.

    How to Repair Your Iron Golem

    An Iron Golem with many cracks on its body.

    As an Iron Golem takes more and more damage, you’ll notice more and more cracks appear on its body. There are 4 stages of deterioration: at full health, there will be no cracks; at 75% to 50% health, there will be a few cracks; at 50% to 25% health, there will be many cracks; and, at 25% health or lower, the entirety of the Iron Golem’s body will be covered in cracks.

    To repair an Iron Golem, you will need to use Iron Ingots on them. Each Iron Ingot used on an Iron Golem will restore 12.5 Hearts. As such, you can almost fully heal an Iron Golem with only 4 Iron Ingots. It is highly recommended to repair your Iron Golem if they are damaged, as the cost for repairs is much cheaper than building a new Iron Golem from scratch. However, using a Block of Iron on an Iron Golem will do nothing.