An ore is a block in Minecraft found in mountains and underground. If an ore block is broken, it will drop something interesting.

File:Bedrock XD.png
Ore is an important thing in Minecraft. The common coal to the right, say. This can be used to burn things in a furnace, like cooking food etc. Rarer and more advanced ores, like diamond, can be used for useful and durable tools and armour.

So hurry up and get mining!

List of ores


Lapis Lazuli Ore seen in the middle of the image next to a block of dirt from a natural dirt lode. Some Redstone Ore seen underneath some stone to the right of it. Some Iron seen to the right, and also some on the wall to the left, with some Coal Ore on the ceiling. There is also excessive lava on the floor.



An astounding view of all vanilla ores except Emerald.


Coaloreblock This section is incomplete.
Please feel free to edit this section to add missing information and complete it.
Reason: This list is incomplete, it will be extended over time..
  • Macrodite Ore

    Gold, redstone and iron, as seen in an expansion room mine.

  • Wiltanium Ore

    Lapis Lazuli and Redstone ore vein specimens encased in glass.

Ore Vein

An ore vein is the natural placement, creation and shape of ore blocks. They are often stringy and bulbous, but some have been known to be cube-shaped. Ore veins can be made of any ore, including dirt and gravel. Some veins have been specially modified to spawn in a certain shape, e.g. glowstone veins are made to look like stalactites and are told by the game coding to be placed on the underside of netherrack cliffs.

Sometimes, when cliffs or caves are generated, it may cut through stone and maybe leave an ore open to the elements. On cliffs and basins this mostly happens with coal and iron, but back in Classic, it happened often with gold too. Caves and ravines could hold any type of ore depending on the cave's layer. This phenomenon is known as "exposed ore veins". Note that exposed ore veins may not hold as much ore as hidden veins do, because terrain generation might also have sliced through the ore as well.


Iron ores in a natural basin.

Ores that commonly make their appearence aboveground in cliffs and basins are called surface ores. The only 2 vanilla surface ores known at the moment are coal and iron.

Some common modded ores like Copper Ore and Ambrosium Ore may hold an appearence on a cliffside. Most others are hidden, encased in a huge ball of rock, waiting for you.

Some ore veins are told to only spawn at certain altitudes. Diamond Ore appears near the bedrock layers.

Gold Ore shares this fashion, but can also be found at higher layers, most commonly at layer 25, where diamond is nonexistant.

Smelting Ores


Smelting Iron Ore for an ingot.

Some ores, like iron and gold, need to be smelted out of their rock body. Back in the day, this could happen by tossing the ores in a fire, until the safer method of putting them in a furnace, which can be crafted from cobblestone. (Note you will get tons of this cobbly stuff if you mine a lot).

Any ore can be smelted if you have Silk Touch on a pickaxe. However, if smelting Lapis Lazuli or Redstone ores, then you only get one item, as opposed to the large amount it could drop if mined with a normal pickaxe - or Fortune pickaxes.

List of smeltable ores (the ones requiring smelting)

Ore Timeline

In Classic, only coal, iron and gold were accessible and the player could place and break an infinite supply of them, making ore discoveries somewhat boring and useless, li,e anything in Creative mode. These could also not be used in smelting or crafting due to the lack of furnaces, crafting tables and even pickaxes. Item drop entities didn't exist either

Diamond Ore was later added in Indev 0.31 followed by Redstone Ore in Alpha 1.0.1, called "Red Ore" at the time. "Redstone" was a popular fan name, eventually giving it that very title. Lapis Lazuli Ore was added even later in Beta 1.2.

Ruby Ore was meant to be added in the Minecraft 1.3.1 snapshots but Emerald Ore took its place due to Dinnerbone's colourblindness. The Ruby images can still be seen in the terrain.png file.

In the Redstone Update (snapshot 13w02) a Nether ore called Nether Quartz was added. It can be used to create a Redstone Comparator and a Daylight Sensor. 

Currently there are no other known ores to be added in the future.