jstachio API 0.11.0


A type-safe Java Mustache templating engine.

Templates are compiled into readable Java source code and value bindings are statically checked using the Java Annotation processing framework.


Use Cases

There are threee main use cases that this templating engine is designed around with the cross cutting feature of type safety and performance:
  1. Templating web applications for traditional SEO friendly HTML server side rendering.
  2. Templating for code generating.
  3. General purpose inline templating instead of using StringBuilder and or a more powerful JEP 430 aka stringtemplates (still in preview)

Mustache Syntax

The format of the templates should by default be Mustache specifically v1.3.0 syntax . The syntax is informally explained by the latest mustache manual and formally explained by the spec.

N.B. currently "https://jgonggrijp.gitlab.io/wontache/mustache.5.html" is the latest manual and NOT "https://mustache.github.io/mustache.5.html".

There are some subtle differences in JStachio version of Mustache due to the static nature notably how Map<String, ?> is handled. The contents of a Map are checked last even if it is a directly on the top of the context stack.

Most of the documentation of what mustache spec options are implemented and how are discussed in the @JStache annotation.

Java Code

Simply annotate a class with JStache like below:

 * Annotate the root model with an inline mustache template
@JStache(template = """
        {{message}} {{name}}! You are {{#ageInfo}}{{age}}{{/ageInfo}} years old!
        That is all for now!
public record HelloWorld(String message, List<Person> people) implements AgeLambdaSupport {}

public record Person(String name, LocalDate birthday) {}

public record AgeInfo(long age, String date) {}

public interface AgeLambdaSupport {
    default AgeInfo ageInfo(Person person) {
        long age = ChronoUnit.YEARS.between(person.birthday(), LocalDate.now());
        String date = person.birthday().format(DateTimeFormatter.ISO_DATE);
        return new AgeInfo(age, date);
The above will generate a HelloWorldRenderer class.

While you may use the generated classes directly to render HelloWorld instances in some cases it is easier and better to use JStachio to render directly from the model without referencing generated code.

Below is an example of that:

public void testPerson() throws Exception {
    Person rick = new Person("Rick", LocalDate.now().minusYears(70));
    Person morty = new Person("Morty", LocalDate.now().minusYears(14));
    Person beth = new Person("Beth", LocalDate.now().minusYears(35));
    Person jerry = new Person("Jerry", LocalDate.now().minusYears(35));
    var hello = new HelloWorld("Hello alien", List.of(rick, morty, beth, jerry));
    // render without reflective lookup
    String actual = HelloWorldRenderer.of().render(hello);
    // or use JStachio reflective lookup which will also apply filters and other advise
    actual = JStachio.render(hello);
    String expected = """
            Hello alien Rick! You are 70 years old!
            Hello alien Morty! You are 14 years old!
            Hello alien Beth! You are 35 years old!
            Hello alien Jerry! You are 35 years old!
            That is all for now!
    assertEquals(expected, actual);


Code Generation Modes

JStachio provides two major modes for how code is generated.
  1. JStachio enchanced mode: JStacheType.JSTACHIO
  2. Zero dependency mode: JStacheType.STACHE
If you do not care about dependencies or footprint JStacheType.JSTACHIO is the preferred mode and is the default.

On the other hand Zero dependency mode will generate code that will only have references to itself and the JDK base module (java.base). This is often desirable if you want to use JStachio for a code generation library (e.g. another annotation processor).

How it works

When the compiler compiles your annotated code JStachio's annotation processor will run. An annotation processor has access to the symbolic tree of the source code being compiled. The classes that are annotated with JStachio's annotations are analyzed to find a template and various other configuration. Once the template is found it is parsed while referring to the symbolic tree of the class annotated with JStache (the model). From that it deduces how to generate Java code that will navigate the model and output text based on the template.

More explanation is available on JStache javadoc.


JStachio uses the Java annotation processor facility to generate code. You will need to set that up otherwise code will not be generated.


Maven configuration has two choices. annotationProcessorPaths or classpath.

Option 1 annotationProcessorPaths

                <source>17</source> <!-- 17 is the minimum -->
                <target>17</target> <!-- 17 is the minimum -->
                <!-- You may not need annotationProcessorPaths if jstachio-apt is added as an option dep -->
                    <!-- other annotation processors -->

Option 2 classpath

JStachio annotation processor MAY also work without being registered in annotationProcessorPaths even for modular libraries and applications provided there is not already an annotationProcessorPaths set. This can be desirable as it allows less explicit maven configuration and normal dependency management (as wells avoids this bug: MCOMPILER-391).

To make it work you would add jstachio-apt as an optional and provided dependency:


This works because maven will jstachio-apt on the classpath instead of the module path during compilation provided you DO NOT put requires io.jstach.apt in your module-info which you should never do in general.

Be aware that the above option may have problems if you have multiple annotation processors as some processors rely on specific order.

Maven Zero dependency configuration

If all of your JStache are configured for zero dependency via JStacheConfig.type() == STACHE you can instead rely on only one compile time dependency (replace dependencies section with following):



dependencies {
    implementation 'io.jstach:jstachio:VERSION'
    annotationProcessor 'io.jstach:jstachio-apt:VERSION'

Gradle Zero dependency configuration

If all of your JStache are configured for zero dependency via JStacheConfig.type() == STACHE you can instead configure Gradle like:

dependencies {
    compileOnly 'io.jstach:jstachio-annotation:VERSION'
    annotationProcessor 'io.jstach:jstachio-apt:VERSION'


JStache and JStacheConfig are heavily documented on configuration of JStachio via annotations.

The most notable configuration is that you can configure whether or not zero dependency code is generated via JStacheConfig.type() as well as location paths of template files via JStachePath and what interfaces generated code extends via JStacheInterfaces.

Extensions and Integrations

Using the JStachio runtime module additional extensions are available. They are in the opt directory of the project.

Many extensions just require the extension jars be in the classpath and are loaded via the ServiceLoader automatically (unless disabled or using DI framework).


See io.jstach.opt.jmustache and JMustacheRenderer

The most notable extension is the JMustache extension as it allows you to change templates without recompiling the application.

Spring Framework

See io.jstach.opt.spring

JStachio normally uses the ServiceLoader for loading runtime components. This extension will use Spring DI to find components as well as provides integration with Spring Web.

Spring Web support

See JStachioHttpMessageConverter

For Spring MVC the integration allows you to return models and they will automatically be rendered to the response.

    public record HelloModel(String message){}
    @GetMapping(value = "/")
    public HelloModel hello() {
        return new HelloModel("Spring Boot is now JStachioed!");

Web MVC integration

See io.jstach.opt.spring.webmvc

JStachioModelView allows you to construct servlet based Spring Views for traditional Web MVC Spring applications. This integration is tied to the servlet API and thus will need it as a dependency.

Web Flux integration

See io.jstach.opt.spring.webflux

JStachioEncoder allows reactive containers such as Flux/Mono to contain JStache models.

Spring Web MVC Example Application

See io.jstach.opt.spring.example module and github project

There is an example modularized Spring Boot Web MVC application. While the code is Javadoc and the source is linked (if you click on the classes the source code is shown) it might be easier to look directly on github (link to project).

Spring Webflux Example Application

See io.jstach.opt.spring.webflux.example module and github project

There is an example modularized Spring Boot Webflux reative application. While the code is Javadoc and the source is linked (if you click on the classes the source code is shown) it might be easier to look directly on github (link to project).

JStachio compile time annotations.
JStachio Core Runtime API.
JMustache extension to JStachio to enable dynamic development of templates.
JStachio Spring integration module.
Spring Web MVC example app for JStachio.
JStachio Spring Webflux integration module.
Spring Webflux example app for JStachio.
JStachio Spring webmvc module.