Packaging Your Plugin or Theme With Laravel Mix

Complexity Low
Compatibility Wordpress 5.4, 5.5+
If you are looking for a detailed guide, read the tutorial related to this post


All you have to have as a pre-requisite to this tutorial is an NPM package configured for your WordPress theme or plugin. If you are using Underscores for a theme you


Modern front-end development requires some sort of packaging utility to help with development and make it easy manage resources. Webpack is a very common, beautiful way to package these resources. However, it takes some time to set up and configure.

Thankfully, our friends in the Laravel community made a tool called Laravel Mix which makes this process a breeze. And since it's a front-end only library, it can be used with WordPress! Following this recipe, will allow you to use modern tools and libraries for development in your WordPress plugin or theme.

Step 1: Install Laravel Mix

npm install laravel-mix --save-dev

Step 2: Install cross-env

npm install cross-env --save-dev

Step 3: Add Build Scripts to package.json

scripts: {
    "dev": "npm run development",
    "development": "cross-env NODE_ENV=development node_modules/webpack/bin/webpack.js --progress --hide-modules --config=node_modules/laravel-mix/setup/webpack.config.js",
    "watch": "npm run development -- --watch",
    "watch-poll": "npm run watch -- --watch-poll",
    "hot": "cross-env NODE_ENV=development node_modules/webpack-dev-server/bin/webpack-dev-server.js --inline --hot --config=node_modules/laravel-mix/setup/webpack.config.js",
    "prod": "npm run production",
    "production": "cross-env NODE_ENV=production node_modules/webpack/bin/webpack.js --no-progress --hide-modules --config=node_modules/laravel-mix/setup/webpack.config.js"

Step 4: Add webpack.mix.js To Plugin/Theme Root

const mix = require('laravel-mix');

Using Commands

npm run development

You want to run this when you are developing your plugin/theme. It will ensure that all errors are outputted and helps you to debug when necessary

npm run production

Builds a minified, production ready bundle of resources for your plugin/theme. Use this command when deploying your theme to production.