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squirrelly 🐿️

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Squirrelly is an easy-to-use ExpressJS Template engine that includes basic conditional statements, passing in options to HTML, and even passing in options to inline JavaScript for advanced conditionals!

Why to use Squirrelly

  • It's super easy to use, with double-bracket syntax similar to Mustache.js, Handlebars.js, and Swig
  • It was made for Express; there's no need to pipe or do weird input stuff... it just works
  • Unlike many other template engines, it doesn't make a JS file to access the DOM--instead, it just returns correct HTML to the __express function

Basic Usage

  1. Download squirrelly (npm install squirrelly --save)
  2. Create an index.sqrl file (that's explained below, but basically you just put options between double brackets)
  3. Create your JS file. An example is shown below

const express = require('express')//Require express
const app = express()

app.set('views', 'tests/views') //specify views directory (where your sqrl files are)
app.engine('sqrl', require('squirrelly').__express);//Set the template engine to squirrelly, and make it use .sqrl files. If you don't do this, you'll have to use the file extension .squirrelly
app.set('view engine', 'sqrl'); (use squirrelly as a template engine)

app.get('/', function (req, res) {//When a request is made to the server
  res.render('index', { title: 'Hey', message: 'Hello there!', birthday: 'today', truth: true, untruth: false})//Render index.sqrl, with options

app.listen(3000, function () {//Start the server
  console.log('Should be rendering on port 3000...')

  1. Watch the magic happen!


To use squirrelly, instead of creating an HTML file, create a .sqrl file. (This will only work if you inlude the following code:

app.engine('sqrl', require('squirrelly').__express);

Otherwise, you can name your files with the .squirrelly extension. Inside these files, to pass in an option, just put it inside of double brackets. For example, if the options passed to the squirrelly file are { title: 'why you should use squirrelly', reason: 'it's awesome'}, your .sqrl file could look like this:

<!DOCTYPE html>
    <title>{{title}}</title> //Evaluates to <title>why you should use squirrelly</title>
    <p>Because {{reason}}</p> //Evaluates to <p>Because it's awesome</p>

Recommended Use

Right now, squirrelly only has basic functionality with conditionals (though it's under active development.) But remember, squirrelly can parse anything, even content of script tags. We recommend using squirrelly inside script tags for advanced logic. A very basic example is shown below:

var userInfo = {{{userInfo}}};
if (userInfo !== null && userInfo !== undefined) {
document.getElementById("userInfo").innerHTML = {{{userInfo}}};


Conditionals have the same simplicity as just regularly passing in options. Currently, Squirrelly just supports true and false conditionals, but more options are expected to come very soon.

A basic Squirrelly conditional follows the following syntax:

{(conditional statement){
    HTML that displays if the conditional passes

To test if an option is true, pass in the desired option without anything else.

    <p>truth = true!</p>

To test if an option is false, pass in the option with an exclamation point in front of it.

    <p>untruth = false!</p>


Squirrelly is still under very active development, and all contributors are welcome. Feel free to fork, clone, and mess around! Then, contact me, create an issue, or send a pull request at Squirrelly's Github Repo.

Beginners are welcome! We welcome all contributors, no matter what skill level.