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JST for Handlebars

handlebars-jst: Pre-compiled Handlebars with Node.js

Install with NPM

The best / easiest way to start using handlebars-jst is to install it with npm, which looks something like this: npm install handlebars-jst

Be sure to use the --global option if you'd like to use the command line tool.

Basic usage

Incant handlebars-jst into your application with a require statement, and jquery-tmpl-just will expose 2 functions: build and process

var tmpl = require('handlebars-jst');

// Builds a template string 'path/to/my/templates', function( output ){

  // Creates a file called templates.js
  tmpl.process( output, 'path/to/output/dir' );

Build creates a string of executable javascript from a directory of templates. It accepts the location of your templates and a callback function.

Process creates a file called templates.js in the specified target directory. It accepts a template string and a the target location.

CLI usage

handlebars-jst also comes with a command line tool, which you can use like this:

$ tmpl path/to/templates path/to/save

This creates the file templates.js to the target directory. If no arguments are passed, the current path will be used instead.

Using as a Cakefile

Since this is really meant to be used as a build tool, a Cakefile is included as well, but keep in mind that coffee-script must be included as a dependency in order to use the Cakefile.

Modify the Cakefile's targetDir and templateDir variables to point to you desired build location and the location of your templates, respectively.

Run cake build or cake watch from the root of your project to generate the compiled templates. cake watch will listen for changes in your templates directory and run the build process on demand.

JST Output

To start using the compiled templates, just include templates.js. Keep in mind that these are just your templates, so you'll also need jQuery and jQuery-tmpl in there too.

templates.js creates a global object called window.JST.

The JST object includes a templates object containing all of your precompiled templates:

JST = {

The helper methods are meant to make using templates as easy as possible, so they are functions that take JSON data to be templated as the only argument.

The functions themselves look like this:

  JST.<file_name> = function( data ){
    return $.tmpl( JST.template.<file_name>, data );

And it's final usage would look something like this:

  var data = { title: "foobar" },
      compiled_template = window.JST.sample_template( my_data );

  $('body').html( compiled_template );

Multiple Named Templates from a single file

Add as many sub-templates as you want to a single JST file by writing a c-style comment with the sub-template name.

<hi>Nothing to see here</h1>

/* foo */
<p>Check out this other awesome template<p>

This file will product 2 templates:

JST = {


This is a need-based project, so I only wrote it to account for my needs as of right now.

If you've got any suggestestions, opinions, optimizations or fixes, please fork and pull request to contribute.

Everything original is MIT, everything else honors whatever license it was written under.