I use Jekyll to make this site. I’ve toyed with converting the site to a Wordpress site but I much prefer writing in a text editor. I also love that I can write <html> or js wherever I want in a file with syntax highlighting. I also use Jekyll to quickly prototype ideas. For this I’m looking for a bare bones Jekyll install.

In the past when I started a Jekyll project I ran jekyll new projectName which gives you a ready to go blog and hides some functionality for simplicity sake. But I usually want all of the functionality and none ready blog stuff.

In walks the --blank flag. If you add --blank to your site install Jekyll gives you everything you need to make a Jekyll site, but no extras. You get just the basics.

First, I had a new macOS on my machine and it broke jekyll. If you use jekyll on mac make sure you go through the macOS install instructions (in my opinion it is deceiving that they have other instructions on their home page).

As of version 4.0.0 --blank comes with a lot more then it used to. So update Jekyll if you have an old version.

Setting up Jekyll –blank

jekyll new projectName --blank
cd projectName

With a standard Jekyll install you would now just run bundle exec jekyll serve. If we do that we get an error:

Could not locate Gemfile or .bundle/ directory

Googling around I found this issue on github (thank you davatron5000 - shout out to shoptalk). At the bottom is the solution:

bundle init
bundle add jekyll

And you’re ready to go.

bundle exec jekyll serve --livereload

And a beautiful blank slate of Jekyll awesomeness appears.