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Liquid vs Mustache: What are the differences?


In web development, Liquid and Mustache are both popular templating languages used for creating dynamic web pages. While they share some similarities, there are key differences between the two. This Markdown code aims to provide a concise comparison highlighting these differences.

1. Variable Syntax:

Liquid uses double curly braces ({{ }}) to enclose its variables, allowing for simple substitution of values. It also provides more advanced features like filters and object properties. On the other hand, Mustache uses double curly braces as well, but it only supports simple value substitution, lacking the additional features provided by Liquid.

2. Conditional Statements:

Liquid offers a range of conditional statements, such as if-else and case-when, to control the flow of the template. It allows developers to display content conditionally based on certain conditions. Mustache, however, doesn't have built-in support for conditional statements. Instead, it relies on data manipulation prior to rendering the template to handle conditional logic.

3. Iteration and Loops:

Liquid provides robust iteration and loop control structures, such as for-loops and cycles, allowing developers to repeat sections of the template based on data sets. This makes it easier to generate repetitive content dynamically. Mustache, on the other hand, lacks built-in iteration and loop constructs, requiring developers to preprocess the data to be rendered before passing it to the template.

4. Template Inheritance:

One of Liquid's notable features is template inheritance, which allows developers to define a base template with sections that can be overridden in child templates. This provides flexibility and modularity in building reusable templates. Mustache, in contrast, doesn't have built-in support for template inheritance, making it less suitable for complex template hierarchy.

5. Advanced Functionality:

Liquid offers a wide range of advanced functionality, such as Twig-style wrapping, custom filters, and tags, making it highly flexible and extensible. It allows developers to create complex, dynamic templates with ease. Mustache, on the other hand, is designed to be simple and minimalistic, lacking the advanced functionality provided by Liquid.

6. Widely Adopted:

Liquid is the default templating engine for Shopify, a popular e-commerce platform, contributing to its wide adoption and extensive community support. Mustache, on the other hand, is more of a generic templating language and is used in various frameworks and languages across the web development ecosystem, making it more versatile but with less dedicated community support.

In summary, Liquid offers a feature-rich templating language with advanced functionality, support for conditional statements, loops, template inheritance, and extensive community support through its association with Shopify. Mustache, on the other hand, provides a simpler templating language focused on value substitution but lacks advanced features like conditional statements, iteration, and template inheritance.

Advice on Liquid and Mustache
Asad Gilani
Software Engineer at Lisec Automation · | 5 upvotes · 196.1K views
Needs advice

@All: I am searching for the best template engine for .NET. I started looking into several template engines, including the Dotliquid, Handlebars.js, Scriban, and Razorlight. I found handlebar a bit difficult to use when using the loops and condition because you need to register for helper first. DotLiquid and Scriban were easy to use and in Razorlight I did not find the example for loops.

Can you please suggest which template engine is best suited for the use of conditional/list and looping and why? Or if anybody could provide me a resource or link where I can compare which is best?

Thanks In Advance

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Replies (1)
Josh Lind

I like Handlebars, it's very mature... some would say-- outdated.

Handlebars loops are done via {{#each myList}}. Read the docs!

Remember, don't put logic in your templates! Keep this layer simple. Sorry to hear you have to use dotNet.

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Pros of Liquid
Pros of Mustache
    Be the first to leave a pro
    • 29
      Dead simple templating
    • 12
      Open source
    • 8
    • 1
      Support in lots of languages

    Sign up to add or upvote prosMake informed product decisions

    What is Liquid?

    It is an open-source template language written in Ruby. It is the backbone of Shopify themes and is used to load dynamic content on storefronts. It is safe, customer facing template language for flexible web apps.

    What is Mustache?

    Mustache is a logic-less template syntax. It can be used for HTML, config files, source code - anything. It works by expanding tags in a template using values provided in a hash or object. We call it "logic-less" because there are no if statements, else clauses, or for loops. Instead there are only tags. Some tags are replaced with a value, some nothing, and others a series of values.

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    What companies use Liquid?
    What companies use Mustache?
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    What tools integrate with Mustache?

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    What are some alternatives to Liquid and Mustache?
    TypeScript is a language for application-scale JavaScript development. It's a typed superset of JavaScript that compiles to plain JavaScript.
    Handlebars.js is an extension to the Mustache templating language created by Chris Wanstrath. Handlebars.js and Mustache are both logicless templating languages that keep the view and the code separated like we all know they should be.
    Facilitating the separation of presentation (HTML/CSS) from application logic. This implies that PHP code is application logic, and is separated from the presentation
    It is a full featured template engine for Python. It has full unicode support, an optional integrated sandboxed execution environment, widely used and BSD licensed.
    This project was formerly known as "Jade." Pug is a high performance template engine heavily influenced by Haml and implemented with JavaScript for Node.js and browsers.
    See all alternatives