Breadcrumbs On Rails

BreadcrumbsOnRails is a simple Ruby on Rails plugin for creating and managing a breadcrumb navigation for a Rails project. It provides helpers for creating navigation elements with a flexible interface.

Build Status Code Climate


  • Rails 4 or Rails 5

For older versions of Ruby or Ruby on Rails, see the CHANGELOG.


Add this line to your application’s Gemfile:

gem "breadcrumbs_on_rails"

And then execute bundle to install the dependencies:

$ bundle

Use Bundler and the :git option if you want to grab the latest version from the Git repository.


Creating a breadcrumb navigation menu in your Rails app using BreadcrumbsOnRails is really straightforward.

In your controller, call add_breadcrumb to push a new element on the breadcrumb stack. add_breadcrumb requires two arguments: the name of the breadcrumb and the target path.

```ruby class MyController

add_breadcrumb “home”, :root_path add_breadcrumb “my”, :my_path

def index # …

add_breadcrumb "index", index_path   end

end ```

See the section “Breadcrumb Element” for more details about name and target class types.

The third, optional argument is a Hash of options to customize the breadcrumb link.

ruby class MyController def index add_breadcrumb "index", index_path, :title => "Back to the Index" end end

In your view, you can render the breadcrumb menu with the render_breadcrumbs helper.

```html <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC “-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN” “”> <html xmlns="" xml:lang="en" lang="en">

untitled <%= render_breadcrumbs %>

</html> ```

render_breadcrumbs understands a limited set of options. For example, you can pass change the default separator with the :separator option.


<%= render_breadcrumbs :separator => ' / ' %>


Current possible options are:

  • :separator
  • :tag

To use with Bootstrap you might use the following:



More complex customizations require a custom Builder.

HTML Escaping

The text of the breadcrumb is html-escaped by default unless it is a SafeBuffer, to prevent XSS attacks.

```ruby class MyController add_breadcrumb “This is the Main page”.html_safe

def profile add_breadcrumb “#@user_name Profile”, users_profile end end ```

In this case, if @user_name is <script>, it will output:

This is the <b>Main</b> page > &lt;script&gt; Profile

A breadcrumbs menu is composed by a number of Element objects. Each object contains two attributes: the name of the breadcrumb and the target path.

When you call add_breadcrumb, the method automatically creates a new Element object for you and append it to the breadcrumbs stack. Element name and path can be one of the following Ruby types:

  • Symbol
  • Proc
  • String


If the value is a Symbol, the library calls the corresponding method defined in the same context the and sets the Element attribute to the returned value.

```ruby class MyController

# The Name is set to the value returned by # the :root_name method. add_breadcrumb :root_name, “/”


def root_name
  "the name"

end ```


If the value is a Proc, the library calls the proc passing the current view context as argument and sets the Element attribute to the returned value. This is useful if you want to postpone the execution to get access to some special methods/variables created in your controller action.

```ruby class MyController

# The Name is set to the value returned by # the :root_name method. add_breadcrumb { |c| c.my_helper_method }, “/”

end ```


If the value is a String, the library sets the Element attribute to the string value.

```ruby class MyController

# The Name is set to the value returned by # the :root_name method. add_breadcrumb “homepage”, “/”

end ```

Restricting breadcrumb scope

The add_breadcrumb method understands all options you are used to pass to a Rails controller filter. In fact, behind the scenes this method uses a before_filter to store the tab in the @breadcrumbs variable.

Taking advantage of Rails filter options, you can restrict a tab to a selected group of actions in the same controller.

```ruby class PostsController < ApplicationController add_breadcrumb “admin”, :admin_path add_breadcrumb “posts”, :posts_path, :only => %w(index show) end

class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base add_breadcrumb “admin”, :admin_path, :if => :admin_controller?

def admin_controller? =~ /^Admin(::|Controller)/ end end ```

Internationalization and Localization

BreadcrumbsOnRails is compatible with the standard Rails internationalization framework.

For example, if you want to localize your menu, define a new breadcrumbs node in your .yml file with all the keys for your elements.

```yaml # config/locales/en.yml en: breadcrumbs: homepage: Homepage first: First second: Second third: Third


it: breadcrumbs: homepage: Homepage first: Primo second: Secondo third: Terzo ```

In your controller, use the I18n.t method.

```ruby class PostsController < ApplicationController add_breadcrumb I18n.t(“breadcrumbs.first”), :first_path add_breadcrumb I18n.t(“breadcrumbs.second”), :second_path, :only => %w(second) add_breadcrumb I18n.t(“breadcrumbs.third”), :third_path, :only => %w(third) end

class ApplicationController < ActionController::Base add_breadcrumb I18n.t(“breadcrumbs.homepage”), :root_path end ```


BreadcrumbsOnRails was created and is maintained by Simone Carletti. Many improvements and bugfixes were contributed by the open source community.


Direct questions and discussions to Stack Overflow.

Pull requests are very welcome! Please include tests for every patch, and create a topic branch for every separate change you make.

Report issues or feature requests to GitHub Issues.

More Information


Copyright (c) 2009-2015 Simone Carletti. This is Free Software distributed under the MIT license.