In today’s digital age, web-based rich text editors have become an indispensable tool for numerous applications, ranging from blogging platforms to CMS systems. And if you’re a React developer, integrating a performant and customizable rich text editor might be on your checklist. Enter react-quill, a powerful React wrapper for the renowned Quill rich text editor.

react-quill seamlessly brings together the modularity of Quill with the scalability and flexibility of React. What does this mean for developers? A more effortless integration, to begin with! With react-quill, you can integrate the Quill editor into your React applications without wrestling with incompatibilities or performance issues.

Why Choose react-quill?

  1. Simplified Integration: React is all about components. With react-quill, you can incorporate the Quill editor as a React component, maintaining the uniformity and elegance of React’s component architecture.
  2. Customizable to the Core: Whether you desire a toolbar with specific controls, need particular formatting options, or wish to implement custom themes, react-quill offers a plethora of customization options.
  3. React-Centric Event Handling: React developers are accustomed to handling events in a specific manner. react-quill ensures that the event handling of the Quill editor aligns with React’s paradigms, providing a cohesive developer experience.
  4. Performance Optimized: By tapping into React’s performance optimizations and Quill’s lightweight core, react-quill ensures that the editor remains snappy and responsive, even in large-scale applications.
  5. Broad Ecosystem: With react-quill, you’re not just getting a text editor. You’re stepping into a vast ecosystem. From extensions to plugins and a supportive community, the possibilities to extend and enhance the editor’s functionalities are immense.

As we venture further into this guide, we’ll explore how to set up react-quill in a React project, delve deep into customization, understand content handling, and much more. Whether you’re aiming to craft a minimalistic text editor or a feature-packed content creation tool, react-quill is the right pick for React developers.


Before diving deep into the rich world of react-quill and exploring its myriad features, it’s essential to ensure that we’re on the same page in terms of foundational knowledge and setup. Here’s what you should be familiar with to get the most out of this guide:

Assumed Knowledge in React:

  1. Basic React Understanding: While we’ve skipped the introductory content on React, it’s vital for readers to have a sound grasp of React’s fundamental concepts. This includes understanding components, props, state, and the overall React component lifecycle.
  2. React Hooks: Introduced in React 16.8, hooks have since become an integral part of the React ecosystem. Familiarity with hooks like useState and useEffect will be beneficial as we’ll leverage them in our react-quill integrations.
  3. ES6 and Beyond: Modern JavaScript features, especially ES6 syntax like arrow functions, destructuring, and modules, play a crucial role in writing clean and efficient React code. We’ll be using these features extensively.

Technical Prerequisites:

  1. Node.js and npm/yarn: Ensure you have Node.js installed on your system. This provides the runtime environment to run our React application. Along with it, having a package manager like npm or yarn is essential for managing dependencies, including react-quill.
  2. React Project Setup: For the purposes of this tutorial, we’ll assume that you have a React application up and running. If you’re starting from scratch, tools like Create React App (CRA) can speed up the setup process.
  3. A Code Editor: While any text editor would work, IDEs like Visual Studio Code (VSCode) or WebStorm come with built-in support for React and JavaScript, enhancing the development experience.
  4. Web Browser: A modern web browser like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Edge for viewing and testing your React application integrated with react-quill.

By ensuring familiarity with the aforementioned points, you’ll be well-prepared to integrate, customize, and harness the power of react-quill in your React application. With the basics in place, let’s proceed to set up react-quill in our project.

Setting Up react-quill in Your React Project

Having grasped the foundational knowledge and ensuring our technical setup is ready, it’s time to integrate the powerful react-quill into our React application. This process is relatively straightforward and can be summed up in two core steps: installation and basic configuration. Let’s deep-dive into each one.


Integrating external libraries into a React project often starts with the installation, and react-quill is no exception. Thankfully, with modern package managers like npm and yarn, this process is a breeze.

Using npm:

If you’re using npm as your package manager, open your terminal or command prompt and navigate to your React project directory. Then, execute the following command:

npm install react-quill

Using yarn:

For yarn enthusiasts, the process is equally straightforward. Within your project directory, run:

yarn add react-quill

Other necessary dependencies:

While react-quill is the primary package, Quill’s core library is a peer dependency. Thus, ensure it’s also installed:

npm install quill
# or
yarn add quill

With the necessary packages installed, we can shift our focus to configuring react-quill within our React application.

Basic Configuration

Configuring react-quill entails importing the necessary modules and setting up a basic editor instance in our React component. Here’s how you can achieve that:

  1. Importing react-quill into your component:

Start by importing the required react-quill components at the beginning of your React file:

import ReactQuill from 'react-quill';
import 'react-quill/dist/quill.snow.css';  // Import styles

The ‘quill.snow.css’ is one of the default themes provided by Quill. It gives the editor a polished look right out of the box.

  1. Setting up a basic editor:

With the necessary imports in place, you can now integrate the react-quill editor into your component’s render method or return statement (if using functional components). Here’s a basic example:

import React, { useState } from 'react';
import ReactQuill from 'react-quill';
import 'react-quill/dist/quill.snow.css';

function MyComponent() {
  const [editorContent, setEditorContent] = useState('');

  return (
      <ReactQuill value={editorContent} onChange={setEditorContent} />

export default MyComponent;

In the example above, we’ve initialized a basic react-quill editor, and any content changes within the editor will automatically update our component’s state.

Congratulations! You’ve successfully integrated react-quill into your React application. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. As we journey ahead, we’ll delve deeper into customizing and harnessing the full potential of this rich text editor.

Customizing the Quill Editor in React

One of the hallmarks of a robust rich text editor is its adaptability to diverse use cases. Quill, and by extension react-quill, doesn’t disappoint in this regard. The editor is designed to be as flexible as you need it to be. In this section, we’ll walk you through the customization capabilities of react-quill, spanning toolbars, formatting, and themes.

Toolbar Customization

Quill’s toolbar offers a myriad of functionalities right out of the box. However, applications often have unique requirements. Let’s understand how to mold the toolbar to fit those needs.

Defining custom toolbars:

To define a custom toolbar, you would create a configuration object specifying which controls should appear and in what order. Here’s an example:

const toolbarOptions = [
  ['bold', 'italic', 'underline'],        // toggled buttons
  [{ 'list': 'ordered'}, { 'list': 'bullet' }],   // dropdowns with defaults from theme
  [{ 'align': [] }],
  ['link', 'image']

Adding/removing buttons:

Using the configuration above, you can easily add or remove buttons. For instance, if you wanted to remove the ‘image’ button and add a ‘strike’ button, you’d modify the array as follows:

const toolbarOptions = [
  ['bold', 'italic', 'underline', 'strike'],
  [{ 'list': 'ordered'}, { 'list': 'bullet' }],
  [{ 'align': [] }],

Then, to apply this custom toolbar to your react-quill component:

<ReactQuill value={editorContent} onChange={setEditorContent} modules={{ toolbar: toolbarOptions }} />

Formatting Options

A cornerstone of any rich text editor is the range of formatting options it provides. Quill supports a broad spectrum of formats, and you have granular control over which ones to enable.

Supported formats:

Quill provides a host of formatting options out of the box, including:

  • Text styles: bold, italic, underline, strike, etc.
  • Block formats: header, blockquote, list (ordered and bullet), align, etc.
  • Links and images.

Enabling/disabling specific formats:

If you wish to restrict the available formats, you can provide a formats prop to your react-quill component:

const allowedFormats = ['bold', 'italic', 'underline', 'list', 'header', 'link'];

<ReactQuill value={editorContent} onChange={setEditorContent} formats={allowedFormats} />

In the example above, only the specified formats are enabled.


An aesthetically pleasing user experience goes a long way. Quill offers a selection of themes to cater to different looks and feels, and customizing them is straightforward.

Default themes provided by Quill:

Quill comes with a few built-in themes:

  • snow
  • bubble
  • core (minimal styling, ideal for custom themes)

To use any of these themes, you’d simply specify it in your react-quill component:

<ReactQuill theme="snow" value={editorContent} onChange={setEditorContent} />

Integrating custom themes:

If the default themes don’t suit your application’s aesthetics, you can always create a custom theme. This typically involves defining custom CSS styles and ensuring react-quill knows about this custom theme. The depth of this topic warrants a dedicated article, but in essence, it’s about linking your theme’s CSS and setting the theme prop to your custom theme’s name.

With the above customizations, your react-quill instance can be as unique as your project demands. Whether you’re aiming for a minimalistic interface or a feature-packed editor, react-quill offers the flexibility to make it happen.

Handling and Saving Editor Content

At the core of every text editor lies its primary function – dealing with content. Once you’ve established your editor’s appearance and features with react-quill, the next pivotal step is managing that content. Whether it’s for saving drafts, rendering published content, or simply tracking changes, understanding how react-quill handles content is paramount.

Accessing and Saving Content

Your rich text editor is more than a visual tool; it’s a gateway to user-generated content that might need processing, storing, or sharing. Let’s delve into accessing and saving this content.

How to get content from the editor:

Accessing content from your react-quill editor is straightforward. If you’ve followed the previous sections, you already have a state that gets updated whenever the content changes.

However, if you want to programmatically retrieve content, you can use refs:

import React, { useRef } from 'react';
import ReactQuill from 'react-quill';

function MyComponent() {
  const quillRef = useRef(null);

  const handleSave = () => {
    const editorContent = quillRef.current.getEditor().getContents();
    // Save editorContent to database or process further

  return (
      <ReactQuill ref={quillRef} />
      <button onClick={handleSave}>Save</button>

Handling content changes:

Every time there’s a change in the editor’s content, react-quill triggers its onChange handler. This provides both the new content and a Delta representation of the change:

function handleChange(content, delta, source, editor) {
  // content: The new complete content of the editor
  // delta: A representation of the change
  // ... (additional arguments)

Integrate it like so:

<ReactQuill onChange={handleChange} />

Using Delta and HTML Formats

The flexibility of react-quill extends to the formats in which you can store and represent your content: Delta (a format native to Quill) and traditional HTML.

Brief explanation on Delta:

Delta is a format designed to efficiently and consistently represent content and changes in Quill. Instead of storing raw content, Deltas store a sequence of modification operations, making it both lightweight and easy to process. A Delta might look something like:

  "ops": [
    {"insert": "Hello, "},
    {"insert": "world!", "attributes": {"bold": true}}

This represents the string “Hello, world!” with “world!” being bolded.

How to save and retrieve content in both formats:

  1. Using Delta:

To get the content as a Delta:

const delta = quillRef.current.getEditor().getContents();

And to set the content from a Delta:

  1. Using HTML:

To get the content as HTML:

const html = quillRef.current.getEditor().root.innerHTML;

Setting content from HTML requires a bit more caution due to potential cross-site scripting (XSS) attacks. Ensure your content is sanitized before setting it:


Handling and saving content with react-quill offers the flexibility required to adapt to different project needs. By mastering both Delta and HTML formats, you equip yourself with the tools to create a dynamic, efficient, and secure rich text editing experience.

Advanced Features and Extensions

So you’ve got react-quill up and running, styled to your needs, and are managing content effortlessly. What’s next? The depth of what Quill offers doesn’t end at basic rich text editing capabilities. Its architecture is built around extensibility, ensuring developers can tailor the editor to even the most niche requirements. In this section, we will take a deep dive into custom modules and event handling, pushing react-quill beyond its out-of-the-box capabilities.

Custom Modules

The module system in Quill enables developers to encapsulate functionality and enhance or even completely alter the editor’s behavior. This modular nature is what makes Quill so adaptable.

How to extend react-quill functionality:

To create a custom module for Quill when using react-quill, follow these steps:

1. Define your module. Here’s a simple example of a module that logs the word count:

const wordCountModule = {
  init: function() {
    // This will refer to the Quill instance when initialized.
    this.quill.on('text-change', function() {
      const text = this.quill.getText();
      const wordCount = text.split(/\s+/).filter(Boolean).length;
      console.log(`Word count: ${wordCount}`);

2. Add the module to your react-quill instance:

<ReactQuill modules={{ wordCount: wordCountModule }} />

Examples of popular custom modules:

  1. Image Uploader: Instead of using base64 encoded images (default in Quill), developers often require images to be uploaded to a server and then use the resulting URL in the editor.
  2. Mentions/Autocomplete: Think of this like Twitter’s mention system, where typing “@” brings up a list of users.
  3. Syntax Highlighting: With libraries like Highlight.js, you can incorporate code block syntax highlighting.

Event Handling

Events are crucial in creating a responsive and dynamic user experience. Quill exposes various events that can be harnessed in React applications.

Working with Quill events in React:

To listen to Quill events when using react-quill, you can utilize refs and the Quill instance. Here’s a basic example of listening to the ‘selection-change’ event:

import React, { useEffect, useRef } from 'react';
import ReactQuill from 'react-quill';

function MyComponent() {
  const quillRef = useRef(null);

  useEffect(() => {
    if (quillRef.current) {
      const editor = quillRef.current.getEditor();
      editor.on('selection-change', function(range, oldRange, source) {
        if (range) {
          console.log(`User made a selection from index ${range.index} to ${range.index + range.length}`);
        } else {
          console.log('Cursor not in editor');
  }, []);

  return <ReactQuill ref={quillRef} />;

Examples of common event use-cases:

  1. ‘text-change’ Event: Track changes in real-time, perhaps for a collaborative editing feature.
  2. ‘editor-change’ Event: This is a catch-all event for ‘text-change’ and ‘selection-change’ events. Useful if you want a single handler for multiple scenarios.
  3. ‘scroll-before-change’ Event: If you want to add custom behavior before the content scrolls, this event can be useful.

Expanding the capabilities of react-quill is not just about adding bells and whistles. It’s about aligning the tool to the specific needs of your application, and in doing so, offering an unparalleled user experience. With custom modules and event handling, the world is your oyster in terms of what you can achieve with this powerful editor.

Performance Optimization Tips for react-quill

Performance matters. In today’s fast-paced digital ecosystem, users expect swift, responsive experiences. Ensuring your react-quill powered editor runs efficiently isn’t just about improving speed, but also about providing a seamless user experience. As you scale and customize your rich-text editor, it’s paramount to keep an eye on performance. Let’s dive into best practices and tips to achieve optimal performance with react-quill.

Best Practices to Ensure Smooth Performance

  1. Limit the Use of Inline Styles: Quill, by default, might generate content with inline styles. While these are okay in moderation, they can slow down rendering times when overused. Consider configuring Quill to use classes instead of inline styles wherever possible.
  2. Be Mindful with Event Handlers: If you’ve added multiple event listeners, especially to the ‘text-change’ event, ensure that the attached functions are performant. Debouncing or throttling these functions can significantly boost performance.
import debounce from 'lodash.debounce';

// ...

this.quill.on('text-change', debounce(handleTextChange, 300));
  1. Optimize Image Handling: Instead of embedding large base64 encoded images directly into the editor (default behavior), consider implementing an image upload module. This ensures images are uploaded to a server, and the editor only deals with the image URL, which is far more performance-friendly.
  2. Lazy Load react-quill: If react-quill isn’t a primary feature displayed immediately on page load, consider lazy loading the component. Using React’s built-in lazy loading can reduce initial load times.
import React, { Suspense, lazy } from 'react';
const LazyLoadedQuill = lazy(() => import('react-quill'));

function MyComponent() {
  return (
    <Suspense fallback={<div>Loading...</div>}>
      <LazyLoadedQuill />
  1. Minimize Re-renders: Using tools like React’s memo or shouldComponentUpdate lifecycle method can prevent unnecessary renders, especially in larger applications where state changes frequently.

Tips on Avoiding Common Pitfalls

  1. Beware of Uncontrolled Components: Ensure that your react-quill editor is either fully controlled or uncontrolled. Mixing the two can lead to unpredictable behavior and performance hiccups.
  2. Optimize Custom Modules: If you’re extending Quill with custom modules, it’s easy to introduce performance issues inadvertently. Regularly profile your modules, especially if they interact with the DOM directly.
  3. Avoid Inline Function Definitions in Render: This is more of a general React tip, but it’s particularly pertinent for components like react-quill which might re-render often.

Instead of:

<ReactQuill onChange={(content) => handleContentChange(content)} />


<ReactQuill onChange={handleContentChange} />
  1. Sanitize Content Efficiently: If you’re sanitizing content before inserting it into Quill, ensure your sanitization methods are optimized. Using well-maintained libraries like DOMPurify can help.
  2. Avoid Overusing Formats: While Quill supports a plethora of formats, it’s best to limit your toolbar to only those that are essential for your application’s use case. Overloading the editor with unnecessary formats can impact rendering times.

Performance optimization isn’t just about speed; it’s about delivering a frictionless experience to your users. By keeping these practices and tips in mind, you can ensure that your react-quill implementation remains efficient, even as you scale and customize to fit your application’s demands.

Common Issues and Troubleshooting with react-quill

Every tool, no matter how finely crafted, comes with its set of quirks. react-quill is no exception. As powerful and flexible as it is, developers might occasionally run into hitches. Fortunately, many of these issues have known solutions. In this segment, we’ll explore some of the most common challenges developers face with react-quill and provide solutions to get you back on track.

Common Problems and Solutions

  1. Editor Not Displaying Properly

    Symptoms: The editor might appear broken or doesn’t render the toolbar.

    Solution: This is often related to CSS. Ensure you’ve imported Quill’s stylesheet, usually found in ‘quill/dist/quill.snow.css’ or ‘quill/dist/quill.bubble.css’, depending on the theme you’re using.

  2. Cursor Jumping to the End on State Change

    Symptoms: When using the editor as a controlled component and updating state, the cursor moves to the end of the content after each keystroke.

    Solution: Avoid updating the editor’s content prop on every change. Instead, utilize a debounced function or only update the state when the user is done editing.

  3. Image Embeds Result in Huge Data URLs

    Symptoms: When adding images, they get embedded as base64, making the editor content extremely long.

    Solution: Implement a custom image handler that uploads the image to a server and then inserts the image URL into the editor.

  4. Missing Formats or Toolbar Options

    Symptoms: Certain formatting options are missing from the toolbar or aren’t working.

    Solution: Ensure that the formats prop includes all the formats you need. The toolbar configuration should also match these formats.

  5. react-quill Throws Warnings in StrictMode

    Symptoms: Console warnings appear when wrapping your app or react-quill in React’s StrictMode.

    Solution: As of my last update in September 2021, react-quill wasn’t fully compatible with StrictMode. You might have to wait for an update or consider removing StrictMode.

  6. Custom Formats or Modules Not Working

    Symptoms: Custom formats/modules aren’t recognized or cause errors.

    Solution: When defining custom formats or modules, ensure they are correctly registered with Quill before initializing react-quill. Use Quill.register() to achieve this.

  7. Editor Content Not Updating on Prop Change

    Symptoms: The content inside react-quill doesn’t update even if its parent component’s state changes.

    Solution: Double-check if the component containing react-quill is re-rendering. Use React’s key prop to force a re-render if necessary.

Like with any library or framework, encountering issues is part and parcel of the development journey. But remember, communities thrive on shared knowledge. So if you stumble upon an issue not listed here, a quick search or query in the react-quill community might yield the solution you need. Embrace the hiccups; they’re valuable stepping stones to mastering react-quill.

Conclusion and Further Reading

Integrating and optimizing rich-text editors into web applications can seem daunting, but with tools like react-quill, the process becomes not only feasible but also enjoyable. Throughout this tutorial, we traversed the intricacies of setting up react-quill, customizing its appearance and functionalities, handling content effectively, harnessing advanced features, troubleshooting common pitfalls, and ensuring smooth performance.

Whether you’re developing a sophisticated content management system, a blogging platform, or any other application that requires rich-text capabilities, react-quill offers a robust, React-friendly solution. It combines the power of the Quill editor with the flexibility of React, simplifying the complex process of rich-text editing.

Dive Deeper with These Resources:

  1. Official Documentation: The official react-quill repository on GitHub is a goldmine of information. Here, you’ll find comprehensive documentation, examples, and an active community ready to assist with queries.
  2. Quill’s Documentation: Understanding the core of Quill itself can provide invaluable insights when you’re looking to expand upon the default functionalities or face any non-React-specific challenges.
  3. react-quill Extensions: Explore various extensions crafted by the community, offering additional modules, formats, and functionalities. Sites like npm or GitHub are excellent starting points to discover these gems.
  4. Performance Analysis: For a deeper understanding of performance aspects in React-based libraries, consider resources like React’s official documentation on optimization.
  5. Community Forums: Platforms like Stack Overflow have dedicated tags for react-quill, making them invaluable spaces for troubleshooting, sharing experiences, and learning from real-world scenarios.
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