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β˜… 16.5k Star Eleventy on GitHub! This is an easy way to support our underrated project and help boost our rank on both GitHub and’s list of site generators.

Eleventy v2.0.1 requires Node.js version 14 or higher.

You can check whether or not you have Node installed by running node --version in a terminal application. (Well, waitβ€”what is a Terminal?) If the command is not found or it reports a number lower than 14, you will need to download and install Node.js before moving on to the next step.

Prefer to watch videos instead? Check out 6 minutes to Build a Blog from Scratch.

Step 1 Make a Project Directory Jump to heading

Create a directory for your project using the mkdir command (short for make directory):

mkdir eleventy-sample

Now move into that directory with the cd command (short for change directory):

cd eleventy-sample

Step 2 Install Eleventy Jump to heading

Create a package.json Jump to heading

Installing Eleventy into a project requires a package.json file. The npm command (provided by Node.js) will create one for you with npm init -y. -y tells npm to use default values and skips the command line questionnaire.

npm init -y

Install Eleventy Jump to heading

@11ty/eleventy is published on npm and we can install and save it into our project’s package.json by running:

npm install @11ty/eleventy

You may also install Eleventy globally but the package.json installation method above is recommended.

Step 3 Run Eleventy Jump to heading

We can use the npx command (also provided by Node.js) to run our local project's version of Eleventy. Let’s make sure our installation went okay and try to run Eleventy:

npx @11ty/eleventy

Here’s what your command line might look like after you run Eleventy:

npx @11ty/eleventy
[11ty] Wrote 0 files in 0.03 seconds (v2.0.1)

If you see (v2.0.1) in your output you know you’re using the newest version. However, Eleventy didn’t process any files! This is expectedβ€”we have an empty folder with no templates inside.

Step 4 Create some templates Jump to heading

A template is a content file written in a format such as Markdown, HTML, Liquid, Nunjucks, and more, which Eleventy transforms into a page (or pages) when building our site.

Let’s run two commands to create two new template files.

macOS or Linux Windows Cross Platform
echo '<!doctype html><title>Page title</title><p>Hi</p>' > index.html
echo '# Heading' >
echo '<!doctype html><title>Page title</title><p>Hi</p>' | out-file -encoding utf8 'index.html'
echo '# Heading' | out-file -encoding utf8 ''

If the out-file command is not available in your Windows Terminal window (it’s PowerShell specific), use the Cross Platform method instead.

npx @11ty/create index.html "<!doctype html><title>Page title</title><p>Hi</p>"
npx @11ty/create "# Heading"

Learn more about @11ty/create (requires Node.js 18 or newer).

Alternatively, you can create these using any text editorβ€”just make sure you save them into your project folder and they have the correct file extensions.

After you’ve created an HTML template and a Markdown template, let’s run Eleventy again with the following command:

npx @11ty/eleventy

The output might look like this:

npx @11ty/eleventy
[11ty] Writing _site/README/index.html from ./ (liquid)
[11ty] Writing _site/index.html from ./index.html (liquid)
[11ty] Wrote 2 files in 0.04 seconds (v2.0.1)

We’ve compiled our two content templates in the current directory into the output folder (_site is the default).

Step 5 Gaze upon your templates Jump to heading

Use --serve to start up a hot-reloading local web server.

npx @11ty/eleventy --serve

Your command line might look something like:

npx @11ty/eleventy --serve
[11ty] Writing _site/index.html from ./index.html (liquid)
[11ty] Writing _site/README/index.html from ./ (liquid)
[11ty] Wrote 2 files in 0.04 seconds (v2.0.0)
[11ty] Watching…
[11ty] Server at http://localhost:8080/

Open http://localhost:8080/ or http://localhost:8080/README/ in your favorite web browser to see your Eleventy site live! When you save your template filesβ€”Eleventy will refresh the browser with your new changes automatically!

Step 6 Put it online (optional) Jump to heading

The easiest way to put your new site online is to head over to Netlify Drop (no account sign-up required) and drag your new Eleventy-generated _site folder to the Netlify Drop web interface. In seconds, your new site will be online for anyone to see!

Step 7 Continue Learning… Jump to heading

Congratulationsβ€”you made something with Eleventy! Now put it to work:

  1. Add more content! In the above tutorial we used HTML and Markdown. Why not JavaScript or WebC (for components) next? Nunjucks and Liquid are also very popular. Maybe you’re feeling super adventurous and want to add your own custom type?.
  2. Use a layout file so that you don’t have to repeat boilerplate on every template.
  3. Add CSS, JavaScript, or Web Fonts to your project.
  4. Learn more of the command line options for Eleventy.
  5. Perhaps you’d like to consume data from third party APIs in your project?

Tutorials and Starter Projects

For folks wanting to build a blog, you can learn how to start from scratch (learn how it works) or use our official Blog starter project (get up and running faster):

You can also use one of the many Starter Projects or read some of our excellent Community-contributed Tutorials (a curated few of which are included below):

More From the Community

Γ—76 resources courtesy of curated by IndieWeb Avatar for Monsour

Expand to see 71 more resources.

Getting Started: