Guide to Crafting Chains in Minecraft

Minecraft chains are mainly used for decoration in both Java Edition and Bedrock Edition. You can place both vertical and horizontal chains, although they are typically placed vertically in order to hang items like lanterns and our modern chandelier design

Chains holding up decorative chandeliers.

In this guide, we will walk you through gathering the ingredients for crafting chains as well as the actual crafting recipe. We will also go over places where chains may naturally spawn, in case you’d rather find them while exploring.

Ingredients for Chain Crafting Recipe.

The crafting recipe for a chain requires one iron ingot and two iron nuggets. In order to craft many chains for decoration, you’ll need to know where to find plenty of iron for both iron ingots and iron nuggets.

Where to Get Iron In Minecraft

Iron can be obtained in a variety of ways in Minecraft, from digging it straight out of the ground to looting structures and creating iron farms.

Getting Iron from Mountains

One really easy and safe way to obtain iron is by exploring Stony Peaks biomes. Oftentimes, these mountains have pockets of coal and iron ore just waiting to be excavated! It’s safer than heading into the mines, especially during the day, and is perfect if you’re situated near a mountain or only need a little iron.

A Stony Peaks biome containing iron ore.
Stony Peaks with iron ore

Exploring Stony Coastlines

In the same vein of thinking, exploring Stony Shores biomes is another great way to get iron in the Overworld. While not as abundant with iron ore as the previous example, they still have enough to get you started.

A Stony Shores biome containing iron.
Stony Shores biome containing iron.

Digging Underground and Exploring Caves

Caves and mining deep beneath the surface will always be the main way to find plenty of ores, including iron. Iron can be found most abundantly between Y levels 15 and 232, but it can really be found at any Y level beneath the surface. 

Iron ore in a cave.
Iron ore in a cave.

Exploring in this way will also enable you to find plenty of other materials, as well as potentially rare underground biomes, fossils, and mineshafts! Finding a dungeon is a great way to do this as well, with the added bonus of being able to turn it into a mob farm.


Mineshafts are a great way to find both iron ore and chests with iron ingots. If you’re already exploring caves in search of iron, exploring a mineshaft will do the same thing but with more rare treasures included!

A minecart chest in a mineshaft with an iron ingot.
Minecart chest in a mineshaft with an iron ingot.

Looting Structures

Looting structures is a great way to pick up iron ingots and other loot! Villages containing a blacksmith villager are well-known for this, but iron ingots can also be found in structures like shipwrecks and Woodland Mansions! 

A chest full of loot in a Woodland Mansion
A Woodland Mansion chest containing iron ingots.

An Iron Golem Farm

Killing iron golems is a surefire way to get some consistent iron, but they are very sturdy and do a lot of damage. To counteract this, many players create an iron farm, typically as they are building a villager trading hall.

Smelting Iron Ore to Make Iron Ingots

Mining iron ore blocks gives you raw iron, which must be smelted in a furnace or blast furnace before it can be used. Place it in the top of the furnace with wood, coal, or charcoal in the bottom to create iron ingots!

Smelting raw iron to create iron ingots.
Smelting raw iron to create iron ingots.

Crafting Iron Nuggets

One iron ingot produces nine iron nuggets. Simply open up the crafting menu in your inventory and place the iron ingot in one of the boxes.

Crafting recipe for iron nuggets.
Crafting recipe for iron nuggets.

Minecraft Chain Crafting Recipe

In order to craft a chain, you will need one iron ingot and two iron nuggets. 

On the crafting table’s 3×3 crafting grid, place one iron nugget in the center box of the first row, the iron ingot in the center box of the second row, and the other iron nugget in the center box of the bottom row. This recipe will produce one chain.

Chain crafting recipe.
Chain crafting recipe.

Where to Find Chains in Minecraft

There are a few places where you can find naturally generated chains, which is perfect if you don’t have a lot of iron or just don’t feel like going through the motions of crafting it.


While mineshafts can be a good source of iron, they are also a great way to get free chains! Any part of the mineshaft extending out into the open air will typically have chains connecting it to the ceiling. 

Chains on a mineshaft platform, connecting it to the ceiling.
Chains on a mineshaft platform.

Mineshafts in caves with very high ceilings may potentially have many more chains than others.

Bastion Remnants

In the Nether, exploring through Bastion Remnant is a great way to pick up some chains along your journey. The treasure rooms within it have a chance to spawn chests containing chains. If you’re already in the Nether, might as well take the time to explore them and leave with extra chains in your pockets.

Chains in the chest of a Basion Remnant treasure room.
Chains in the chest of a Basion Remnant treasure room.

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