grunt-sass-watch

A Grunt Tasks that simply executes a single sass --watch command

grunt-sassWatch

Spawns sass --watch --compass in a specified folder. This is much faster then spawning a new instance of sass everytime a watch-hook is triggered.

If you haven't used grunt before, be sure to check out the Getting Started guide, as it explains how to create a gruntfile as well as install and use grunt plugins. Once you're familiar with that process, install this plugin with this command:

npm install grunt-sassWatch --save-dev

Once the plugin has been installed, it may be enabled inside your Gruntfile with this line of JavaScript:

grunt.loadNpmTasks('grunt-sassWatch');
// Assumes the styles (css and scss) directory is located at 'app/styles'. 
grunt.loadNpmTasks('grunt-sassWatch');
 
// Will look for the styles directory at my_cool_styles 
grunt.loadNpmTasks('grunt-sassWatch:my_cool_styles');
 
grunt.registerTask('default', ['sassWatch']);

Because neither of those solutions are fast enough to be used easily in a livereload enabled environment. The problem both libraries had was that they relied on grunt-watch, which meant that they were launching the sass (ruby) environment + vm each time a scss file needs to be compiled. Furthermore, since the files are not being watched by sass itself, the tasks end up recompiling every sass file instead of only the ones that changed.

I was able to reduce my sass compile time from 6+ seconds to under 0.5 seconds by doing two things:

  1. Splitting my main.scss file into two:
    • vendor.scss - has all my @import statements for Bootstrap and FlatUI
    • main.scss - app specific css rules
  2. Using grunt-sassWatch