Baldur's Gate 3 Cleric Spells


While clerics are DnD’s iconic healer, their spell list certainly is not just that. Among their many and varied options, clerics get access to some of the best buffs, summons, and offensive spells in the game, allowing the Cleric to support a variety of play styles solely by changing your choice of prepared spells, which you can do at any time outside of combat.

Table of Contents


RPGBOT uses a color coding scheme to rate individual character options.

  • Red: Bad, useless options, or options which are extremely situational. Nearly never useful.
  • Orange: OK options, or useful options that only apply in rare circumstances. Useful sometimes.
  • Green: Good options. Useful often.
  • Blue: Fantastic options, often essential to the function of your character. Useful very frequently.

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Cleric Cantrips

Cantrips are (usually) usable at will, making them a go-to option for spellcasters, especially when you’re short on spells slots. Clerics learn 2 cantrips at level 1, then another at levels 4 and 1. You generally cannot replace cantrips except by respeccing your entire build.

  • Blade Ward: In a game where Dodge isn’t an action, Blade Ward is one of the only ways to spend your action just protecting yourself. The 2-round duration lasts until the end of your next turn, so you’re effectively protected for just one round; you can’t alternate turns casting Blade Ward, then doing something fun. The best use case for this is to keep yourself alive while you finish a fight using Bonus Actions, summoned creatures (Spiritual Weapon), or other ongoing effects (Spirit Guardians).
  • Guidance: Absolutely essential. You should almost never make skill checks outside of combat without Guidance running.
  • Light: Environmental light sources are abundant, actual darkness is rare, and Darkvision is easily accessible. If you’re really that desperate, have someone carry a torch.
  • Produce Flame: As much damage as Sacred Flame, but it relies on an attack roll and targeting AC will typically be less reliable than a Dexterity save. However, that’s not always the case, so having a spell attack option is helpful. Note that when you initially cast the spell, it just creates the flame on your body. You need to look in the Passives section of the action bar for the Produce Flame icon and click that to actually attack with the flame.
  • Resistance: Not an awful buff, but it’s not good enough to justify Concentration beyond very low levels. If you want the same benefit, cast Bless. It can be used in dialogue requiring saves, though, so not a bad choice once you’ve picked up Guidance and Sacred Flame
  • Sacred Flame: The class’s go-to damage cantrip.
  • Thaumaturgy: Only affects the caster, and a cleric should never be your party’s Face.

1st-Level Cleric Spells

  • Bane: A good debuff against powerful enemies in an extended fight, but it only targets three creatures, requires Concentration, and competes for space with options like Bless which will help your party win a fight quickly rather than putting you at an advantage during a long attrition fight.
  • Bless: +1d4 to attacks and saves for three targets. This is a fantastic buff which remains mathematically impactful for the whole game. Note that the bonus to saves also applies to the save to maintain Concentration.
  • Command:
    • Approach: Sometimes useful for pulling squishy enemies (wizards, etc.) closer to your party.
    • Drop: In a game where enemies are overwhelming humanoids using weapons, Command (Drop) trivializes many encounters by forcing your enemies to disarm. Be sure to have your party members grab dropped weapons off the ground to prevent enemies from re-equipping them.
    • Flee: Force enemies to run away, potentially provoking opportunity attacks. They’ll then need to spend time running back to rejoin the encounter.
    • Grovel: Force an enemy Prone, allowing your party to make melee attacks at Advantage until the target can stand on their following turn.
    • Halt: Effectively skip your target’s next turn. If your party outnumbers your enemies, the trade is absolutely worth the cost.
  • Create or Destroy Water: If your party has sources of cold or lightning damage (Chromatic Orb, Lightning Bolt, etc.), this sets up the rest of your party for additional damage. It applies in an area of effect, allowing you to hit multiple targets. Outside of combat, there are several points in the game at which there will be areas of flaming ground to cross, and the ability to extinguish that fire can save you the inconvenience of taking fire damage when you accidentally walk into it.
  • Cure Wounds: More healing per slot than Healing Word, but since it consumes your Action and only works in melee range, it’s much more costly to use in combat than Healing Word.
  • Guiding Bolt: Among the best damage options from a 1st-level spell, and granting Advantage on your party’s next attack against the target further adds to the damage potential.
  • Healing Word: Among the most important spells in the game, the ability to heal at range with a Bonus Action means that you can rescue dying allies mid-combat and still spend your Action and your movement doing something exciting.
  • Inflict Wounds: A big hit of damage at melee range. Do your absolute best to get Advantage before attacking, because the spell slot is wasted if you miss.
  • Protection from Evil and Good: Spectacular protection against the affected creature types. Note that this doesn’t actually care about things being evil or good; it’s just the creature type that matters. Why is it named “Protection from Evil and Good”? Tradition dating back to the 70’s.
  • Sanctuary: Effectively forces the AI to forget that your target is there. The target can still Help allies and cast spells like Healing Word, but anything hostile (attacking, Shove, hostile spells, etc.) breaks the effect. Because this is cast as a Bonus Action, you can cast an offensive spell as an Action, then cast this as a Bonus Action on the same turn.
  • Shield of Faith: A great buff for your party’s Defender if they’re drawing a lot of attacks.

2nd-Level Cleric Spells

  • Aid: This increases targets’ current hit points and their hit point maximum, effectively raising their permanent hit points, so temporary hit points can pad things even further. Because this raises targets’ current hit points, too, you can use it in place of Mass Healing Word to heal multiple dying allies. However, if you pre-cast this, that function won’t work because spells don’t stack with themselves, so you need to choose which of the two uses works better for you.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting.

  • Blindness: A fantastic debuff with no Concentration, especially against enemies that rely on fighting at range. However, Constitution saves tend to be high, so this may prove to be unreliable. If available to your party, the rat familiar’s Infectious Bite can impose Disadvantage on Constitution saves, making this spell much more reliable.
  • Calm Emotions: Affected creatures are immune to Charmed and Frightened, which is helpful if you’re facing enemies like dragons which have fear effects because you can prevent allies from becoming frightened. Otherwise, it’s totally useless.
  • Enhance Ability: Absolutely crucial. Outside of combat, this is one of the most important spells in the game.
  • Hold Person: Humanoid enemies are abundant in Baldur’s Gate 3, making Hold Person a spectacularly powerful save-or-suck spell. Paralyze something, then have your party pile in on it until it’s dead. Upcasting this spell to add more targets keeps it powerful for a very long time. However, since enemies get to repeat their saves, you need to work quickly.
  • Lesser Restoration: Removes some debuffs which typically end when you break the Concentration of whatever spellcaster caused them.
  • Prayer of Healing: Not castable in combat, but outside of combat it’s a big pile of healing. Don’t keep it prepared; rotate it in before casting it, then immediately drop it to prepare something else.
  • Protection from Poison: Poison is common across the full level range, making this a powerful defensive option at every level.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest, but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting.

  • Silence: Completely shut down spellcasting (Minor Illusion is an exception) inside the area of effect. A great way to counter enemy spellcasters, but since the area is small they can often just exit the area in order to cast spells.
  • Spiritual Weapon: Summons in this game are absolutely overpowered. The weapon gets its own initiative, moves and attacks on its own, and enemies will even try to attack it. The only problem is that the Spiritual Weapon’s move speed is very slow and it can’t Dash, so in fights taking place over a large area you may struggle to move between targets. The weapon’s movement is inexplicable affected by difficult terrain, too, but you may be able to fly over most it.
  • Warding Bond: A great way to protect a frail party member (wizard) or to mitigate damage to your party’s Defender, but be sure that damage to one target doesn’t accidentally take out two party members.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest, but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting. However, since the caster won’t be in your party for you to watch their hit points, you may return to camp and find the caster dead.

3rd-Level Cleric Spells

3rd-level spells are a major power jump for full spellcasters, bringing heavy-hitting spells like Spirit Guardians.

  • Animate Dead: An excellent addition to your party at any level, and with a little bit of effort you can turn your 1 to 3 undead minions into a terrifying force. See our Practical Guide to Animate Dead.
  • Beacon of Hope: It’s very easy to use this spell to turn yourself into a healbot and burn all of your resources to repair the damage that your enemies are doing with mundane attacks. Don’t make that mistake. You want this for shared Advantage on Wisdom saves, and even then you won’t need that especially often. Your best bet is to use this when you know you’re facing things that impose Wisdom saves, such as dragons with their Fear Aura.
  • Bestow Curse: Single-target, touch range, and the target gets a Wisdom save. The effects are diverse, which is great for a bard, but there’s almost always a good spell that does the same job better.
    • Dread: 50% chance for the target to skip its turn. That’s very tempting, but against humanoids Hold Person will be much more effective since it targets the same save, allows a repeated save the same way, allows automatic critical hits, and robs the target of their turn 100% of the time rather than 50%.
    • Additional Damage: This is basically Hex’s damage boost, but everyone gets it. The target doesn’t get additional saves to remove the effect, which is kind of nice. This could be good against big enemies with a ton of hit points, but there will almost always be a better spell for that same enemy.
    • Attack Disadvantage: This isn’t a bad effect, but it can be done better by several other spells. On the same Wisdom save, you can paralyze humanoids with Hold Person. You can use Heat Metal to make enemies using metal weapons either drop their weapon or suffer Disadvantage to attacks. You could also use Dissonant Whispers or Feat to impose Disadvantage on both attacks and ability checks, though those only last for one turn. Bestore Curse (Attack Disadvantage)’s advantage over those spells is that it lasts a full minute and the target can’t do anything about it. I’m not convinced that that’s enough.
    • Ability Disadvantage (Pick an Ability Score): Disadvantage on both checks and saving throws with the targeted ability can make the target much more vulnerable. Strength will make it easy to Shove them, Constitution or Wisdom will make them vulnerable to many save-or-suck spells. But you’re already trying to make them fail a save, so why not just use one of those save-or-suck spells in the first place?
  • Daylight: Most of the time Darkvision is plenty. Even if you actually need light, you can usually run around and drop candles (it doesn’t take an action to do so). The big appeal, which isn’t explained in the spell’s description, is that for the first minute after you cast the spell, it will trigger Sunlight Sensitivity. When facing enemies like duergar, drow, or myconids, you can debuff the entire encounter with no save. The radius of the light is also enormous, which is nice during Act 2.
  • Feign Death: Why? I can’t think of a single practical use for this spell. Sure, they get Resistance to almost all damage, but since they’re unconscious your enemies crit them for free.
  • Glyph of Warding: You can lay this as a trap, but if enemies are in the area, it triggers immediately, so you can use it like any other AOE spell. Weirdly, all of the saves are Dexterity saves, including the Sleep effect.
    • Sleep: Put enemies to sleep without worrying about their hit point total.
    • Detonation: Launch enemies away, potentially pushing them into pits, off ledges, etc. Targets are pushed directly outward from the center, so you’ll need to be precise with your placement.
    • Acid / Cold / Fire / Lightning / Thunder: Not as much damage as Fireball, but you get to pick the damage type, which means that you can capitalize on Wet enemies or other damage vulnerabilities.
  • Mass Healing Word: Worth at least a look if you’re not reserving Aid to rescue multiple dying allies at the same time. But realistically, this will rarely see use for most players. Using Healing Word or throwing a potion to AOE heal multiple allies is typically sufficient.

    But if you’re taking magic items which apply additional effects when you heal a creature (of which there are several), this is a great way to spread those buffs. Temporary hit points, Momentum, Bless, and additional healing can all be spread to your whole party via Mass Healing Word.

  • Protection from Energy: A fantastic defensive buff to throw on your party’s Defender, but, since this only affects one target and requires Concentration, it’s often hard to justify over other options. If you can, get resistance from consumables or magic items.
  • Remove Curse: Rarely useful, but you may need to briefly prepare it after combat to remove a curse.
  • Revivify: Really good, but also available as a scroll for 200gp, or you can talk to Withers to raise them for a scaling amount depending on your party’s level. If you finish combat and someone is dead, this will save you a pile of gold. But don’t keep it prepared in combat unless you’re comfortable that you couldn’t prepare something more consistently useful.
  • Speak with Dead: Wonderful, extremely useful, and tons of fun. You don’t need to make Charisma checks of any kind, so it’s fine to have your party’s low-Charisma characters do the work here. It’s also a ritual spell, so it doesn’t even eat a spell slot. Prepare it, cast it for free, unprepare it.

    Remember that once you’ve cast this, you’re free to speak to corpses until your next long rest. However, each corpse can answer a maximum of 5 questions, and many won’t be willing to talk to their killer. Once a corpse has been targeted with Speak with Dead, it can never be targeted again. Quicksave if you’re not sure how it will go.

  • Spirit Guardians: A spell so iconic and so powerful that it nearly monopolizes cleric optimization in the tabletop rules, and while it has been nerfed compared to the tabletop rules, it’s still amazing. Walk your cleric into a crowd, turn on Spirit Guardians, and have them spend the rest of the encounter casting Blade Ward to mitigate damage. If enemies escape your magic blender, Shove them back in.

4th-Level Cleric Spells

  • Banishment: The 2-turn duration means that the target reappears at the end of your next turn, effectively removing them from combat for one full round. That’s likely not enough for the cost in most cases, but that one round might be enough for you to set up the rest of your party to quickly eliminate them. This targets a Charisma save, and Charisma saves tend to be low for most enemies.
  • Death Ward: Excellent insurance, especially for characters who draw a lot of attacks or who have cast Warding Bond.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest, but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting.

  • Freedom of Movement: Not always useful, but against enemies that rely on Paralyzed or Restrained, this can be huge.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest, but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting.

  • Guardian of Faith: While this can be another source of concentrationless damage, you’re better off upcasting Spiritual Weapon and getting the extra die of damage and having something that can at least move more than none, even if it can’t do it very well.

5th-Level Cleric Spells

  • Contagion: If you hit the target with the attack, they’re poisoned for a minimum of 3 turns. Poisoned is an extremely effective debuff, though many creatures are resistant or immune to it. Even so, the Poisoned effect may be more significant than the disease. The target must fail a total of three saving throw to apply your chosen disease, which is a big gamble that takes a long time to pay off. Consider the Poisoned effect the primary effect of the spell, and think of the disease as a neat novelty which might come up if you don’t manage to kill the target fast enough.
    • Filth Fever: Disadvantage on Strength-based rolls. This is a trap for players who don’t read past the first option. It looks exciting because enemies often make melee attacks with Strength, and that’s scary. But your target already has Disadvantage on its attacks because it’s Poisoned, so basically this only affects Shove. That is not enough.
    • Flesh Rot: Disadvantage on Charisma-based rolls and vulnerability to all damage. Tempting against a boss, but nowhere near as good as Slimy Doom.
    • Slimy Doom: Disadvantage on Constitution-based rolls, and Stunned whenever it takes damage. Put your target into an area of ongoing damage, and you’re basically done with a fight.
    • Seizure: Disadvantage on Dexterity-based rolls. That might seem tempting for things like Dexterity saves, but you could also get Slimy Doom and stun-lock them for the rest of a fight, so why risk making them slightly more vulnerable but letting them fight on?
    • Mindfire: Disadvantage on Intelligence-based rolls. Cast Confusion instead.
    • Blinding Sickness: Disadvantage on Wisdom-based rolls and Blinded, giving you and your party Advantage to attack them. Cast Blindness instead.
  • Dispel Evil and Good: Rarely more impactful than casting Protection from Evil and Good.
  • Flame Strike: The Cleric’s answer to Fireball. Having some of the damage be radiant allows the spell to (partially) get around common resistances to fire damage, but in a game where you can always know your targets’ resistances (mouse over them and press T) there’s no excuse to accidentally run into a damage resistance. For the same spell slot, you can upcast Spirit Guardians, walk into your enemies, and do as much damage by the end of the second round, then keep on blending.
  • Greater Restoration: Charm and Stun effects are typically short, but Petrification can be permanent, so your party needs access to this. Don’t prepare it unless you’re expecting to face something that petrifies creatures. If you’re surprised, you can always prepare it outside of combat.
  • Insect Plague: Good ongoing area damage.
  • Mass Cure Wounds: Basically never a good idea. This is a perfect example of the hit point attrition fight, which is nearly always a losing fight for the player. A 3rd-level Fireball does as much damage on average as this heals. Upcasting Aid to this level raises targets’ current hit points and hit point maximums by 20, which is more than the average amount healed by this spell. Mass Healing Word solves the same “oh no, my allies are dying” problem, and it’s both a Bonus Action and two spell levels lower.
  • Planar Binding: Basically Dominate Person for Celestials, Elementals, Fey, and Fiends.

6th-Level Cleric Spells

With a level cap of 12, 6th-level spells are the highest that we see in Baldur’s Gate 3, making them the most powerful spells that you can get. Additionally, you only get one per day unless you have magic items to restore spell slots, so you want to choose carefully what’s going to be the most impactful choice. This means that a combat trick like Heal, while tempting in the tabletop version, will likely be outclassed by Planar Ally or Heroes’ Feast.

  • Blade Barrier: With a duration of just one turn, it’s not the area control spell you might know from the tabletop rules. Instead, it’s a burst of damage and a very short speed penalty.
  • Create Undead: Mummies are fine, but the Deva is a much better option for accomplishing the same thing (single target damage and fear) as it does a better damage type and can fly.
  • Harm: Constitution saves tend to be high, and this can’t drop the target to 0 due to a weird tradition, so all around this spell is a huge pain. Inflict Wounds cast at 6th level does an average of just 4 less damage, and if you can get Advantage on an attack roll, Inflict Wounds is is considerably more effective on average.

    If you take the Cull the Weak Illithid Power, Harm’s refusal to reduce creatures to 0 hp suddenly stops being a problem.

  • Heal: This is the only healing spell worth using in combat with the intent getting your target higher than “just barely conscious”. 70 hp is enough that your target can actually endure a few hits before dropping to 0 again and wasting your spell slots.
  • Heroes’ Feast: A spectacular defensive buff. The hp maximum increase stacks with Aid.

    Because this lasts until your next Long Rest, but doesn’t require Concentration, it’s a candidate for Camp Casting.

  • Planar Ally: A powerful summon that lasts all day.
    • Djinni: Djinni is good if you want your summon’s primary purpose to be disruption and light area control. They can poison targets, but poison is commonly resisted. This is a fine choice, but they don’t hit as hard as Devas.
    • Deva: Swinging for a staggering 1d6 bludgeoning+4d8 radiant+1d6 psychic damage per turn (which also causes fear on a failed save), these are a DPR powerhouse. Also, they can cast revive once. Perfect for standing back up the cleric that got thrown off a cliff so they can get back to reviving everyone else.
    • Cambion: Charm is questionably useful in combat, and that’s a cambion’s main gimmick besides shooting rays of fire. Stick with something else unless you douse everything in arsonist’s oil.