Pokemon Go XL Candy explained: How to get more XL Candies and what they're used for

Pokemon Go XL Candy
(Image credit: Niantic)

Introduced at the tail end of 2020, Pokemon Go XL Candy is an item exclusive to players at level 40 and above. They're necessary to boost a Pokemon's level higher than 40, but are frustratingly tricky to acquire, especially when compared to normal candy in Pokemon Go. We've got the full explainer for Pokemon Go XL Candy below, so carry on reading.

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Pokemon Go XL Candy explained

Pokemon Go XL Candy

(Image credit: Niantic)

The Pokemon Go Beyond update has raised the in-game level cap to 50, meaning that your Pokemon can get stronger alongside your player levelling up. But you don't need to wait until you hit level 50 to get a Pokemon to that power; as long as you have enough XL Candy, you can level up a Pokemon that far as soon as you hit level 40.

XL Candy shares a lot of similarities with normal Candy, along with Mega Energy that was introduced earlier in 2020. It's not a blanket item like the ones in your inventory; it's specific to Pokemon families, so Squirtle XL Candy will only work on Squirtle, Wartortle, and Blastoise for example.

Levelling up one Pokemon from level 40 to 41 will cost 20 XL Candy. This amount is the same for every Pokemon (although shadow Pokemon cost slightly more and Purified Pokemon a little less), but the total XL Candy you need increases per level. To get one Pokemon to level 50 will cost 296 XL Candy. See the table below for the exact values (including the stardust needed), thanks to /u/lewymd over on the /r/TheSilphRoad subreddit.

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Pokemon Go XL Candy requirements
LevelXL CandyStardustCP Multiplier

How to get XL Candy in Pokemon Go

Pokemon Go XL Candy

(Image credit: Niantic)

It's safe to say that acquiring enough XL Candy to level up a specific Pokemon to level 50 won't happen in a day or two. There are multiple ways to get XL Candy, but getting a total of 296 per Pokemon isn't easy.

The first and main method of acquiring XL Candy is to catch more Pokemon. You have a chance of receiving 1-3 XL Candy per catch. It won't happen every time you catch a Pokemon, but it's frequent enough that it becomes a reliable way of earning XL Candy... if you can find the right Pokemon to catch in the first place.

There's also a chance you receive XL Candy by hatching eggs, as does transferring Pokemon to Professor Willow. Trading Pokemon with another player can give each of you XL Candy too, but at the time of writing this function has been disabled while Niantic balances it, but will be re-enabled in future.

Finally, you can convert normal candy into XL Candy, but the rate is 100 candy to one XL Candy. That's not great at all, so we wouldn't recommend it. Rare XL Candy exists in the game, but is incredibly hard to acquire, as it seems to drop only when levelling up past level 40, with just a couple per level.

As far as we know, the best way to level up standard wild Pokemon to level 50 is by catching as many of them as possible and transferring them to Professor Willow. This does make legendaries almost impossible to reach level 50, but as time goes on, Niantic is sure to introduce new ways to earn XL Candy.

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Ford James

Give me a game and I will write every "how to" I possibly can or die trying. When I'm not knee-deep in a game to write guides on, you'll find me hurtling round the track in F1, flinging balls on my phone in Pokemon Go, pretending to know what I'm doing in Football Manager, or clicking on heads in Valorant.