GitDown Parsing Markdown in PHP


March 8th, 2019

GitDown is a simple package for parsing (GitHub-flavored) Markdown in PHP by Caleb Porzio. It works by sending the provided markdown to a public GitHub API that parses it as HTML.

If you aren’t using Laravel, you can still use this package by Here’s the basic usage in a Laravel project:


// Will be cached forever. (suggested)

// Will be cached for 24 hours. (minutes in Laravel < 5.8, seconds otherwise)
GitDown::parseAndCache($markdown, $seconds = 86400);

// Pass in your own custom caching strategy.
GitDown::parseAndCache($markdown, function ($parse) {
    return Cache::rememberForever(sha1($markdown), function () use ($parse) {
        return $parse();

You don’t have to use Laravel to use GitDown—you can create a GitDown\GitDown instance and bring your own caching strategy:

$gitDown = new GitDown\GitDown(
    $token = 'foo',
    $context = 'your/repo',
    $allowIframes = false


// Pass in your own custom caching strategy.
$gitDown->parseAndCache($markdown, function ($parse) {
    return Cache::rememberForever(sha1($markdown), function () use ($parse) {
        return $parse();

It’s important to remember that without caching the results, you are going to run into GitHub rate limiting quickly and your pages will load super-slow.

On the frontend, you can benefit from the @gitdown directive in Laravel projects to the <head> of your layout, wrapping the markdown content in a .markdown-body class:

    <div class="markdown-body">
        {!! GitDown::parseAndCache($content) !!}

If you’re not using Laravel, you can use the following:

<style><?php echo GitDown\GitDown::styles(); ?></style>

Check out the project’s README for detailed instructions on rendering styles.

To learn more about GitDown and the gory details of why you might want to use it, read Caleb’s writeup Parsing Markdown: The Easy Way (With Code Highlighting).

You can learn more about this package, get full installation instructions, and view the source code on GitHub at calebporzio/gitdown.

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Paul Redmond

Full stack web developer. Author of Lumen Programming Guide and Docker for PHP Developers.