Flutter Examples in Hugo

Flutter examples in Hugo

Robbert Halff

4 minute read

This article explains how to show flutter examples on your hugo powered site using a simple iframe shortcode.

Step 1: Install the flutter_web build tools

First install the webdev package which provides the build tools for Flutter for web:

$ flutter pub global activate webdev

Ensure that the $HOME/.pub-cache/bin directory is in your path, and then you may use the webdev command directly from your terminal.

Step 2: Adding the flutter web repository as submodule

Add the Flutter Web Repository as a submodule to your site’s git repository:

git submodule add git@github.com:flutter/flutter_web.git

The examples for flutter web reside in flutter_web/examples.

Although we could go hacking up some examples directly within the directory of this submodule it’s better to keep that source tree clean and create a new directory for our examples to live in.


mkdir -p examples/flutter

Now let’s take one of the examples from the flutter web repository and put them into our example dir:

cp -r flutter_web/examples/spinning_square examples/flutter/

The main thing we have to change is the path to flutter web.


Ensure the path to the packages match your directory structure:


-    path: ../../packages/flutter_web
+    path: ../../../flutter_web/packages/flutter_web
-    path: ../../packages/flutter_web_ui
+    path: ../../../flutter_web/packages/flutter_web_ui

Run pub get to install the dependencies.

If all goes well you can run webdev serve within the example directory and see a spinning square if you navigate to

Instead of serving this example we will want to build it instead so we can integrate it into our hugo site.

In order to do so run webdev build.

This will create a build directory with an index.html file and a main.dart.js.

Next just move both of these files to the static directory of your hugo installation:


mkdir -p static/examples/flutter/spinning_square
cp examples/flutter/spinning_square/build/index.html static/examples/flutter/spinning_square
cp examples/flutter/spinning_square/build/main.dart.js static/examples/flutter/spinning_square

If all went well the example should now be available at the path /examples/flutter/spinning_square of your hugo site.


Although it’s fine to add the examples directory to git it’s probably not a smart idea to also commit the build/ directory.

So make sure to add the build/ directory to your .gitignore file.

Step 3: Creating a shortcode to serve the examples

In order to integrate this example into the site we can make a simple iframe shortcode.

To do so paste the following code into a file named iframe.html in the shortcodes directory:


<div class="iframe-container">
  <iframe src="{{.Get 0}}" allowfullscreen="allowfullscreen"></iframe>

In addition we’ll add some css to make the iframe responsively scale well:


.iframe-container {
    overflow: hidden;
    padding-top: 56.25%;
    position: relative;

.iframe-container iframe {
    border: 0;
    height: 100%;
    left: 0;
    position: absolute;
    top: 0;
    width: 100%;

This css will have to be loaded in the header of your site. For the theme I’m currently using this can be found in header.html.

Add something like the following to load the css:

<link rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="{{ .Site.BaseURL }}css/iframe.css" />

Then from within any post we can now show our flutter example using the iframe shortcode:

{{< iframe "/examples/flutter/spinning_square" >}}

Which should result in:

Step 4: Missing FontManifest.json

When you serve the example you might notice that main.dart.js will try to load a FontManifest.json even though the example itself is not using any fonts or icons. In order to make this file available you must create it manually. It’s contents will depend on which fonts your flutter example is using.

A good default would be:

    "family": "MaterialIcons",
    "fonts": [
        "asset": "https://fonts.gstatic.com/s/materialicons/v42/flUhRq6tzZclQEJ-Vdg-IuiaDsNcIhQ8tQ.woff2"

For the example used within this article you would create this file at the following path:



In order to create new flutter examples using the above setup all we have to do is.

  • Create a flutter web example in examples/flutter
  • Run webdev build to build the example.
  • Copy the files index.html and main.dart.js somewhere within the static directory of your site.
  • Create a FontManifest.json file within the example’s assets directory.
  • Reference the example anywhere in your posts using:

    {{< iframe "/examples/flutter/[your-example-location]" >}}
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