Usage Without a Build Step

While it is common to build Vue applications using tools Webpack to bundle the application, vue-loader to leverage Single File Components, and Jest to write expressive tests, it is possible to use Vue Test Utils with much less. The minimal requirements for Vue Test Utils, aside from the library itself are:

  • Vue
  • vue-template-compiler
  • a DOM (be it jsdom in a Node environment, or the DOM in a real browser)

In this example, we will demonstrate how to write a simple test using nothing but the minimal dependencies described above. The final code can be found here.

Installing the Dependencies

We need to install some dependencies, as explained above: npm install vue vue-template-compiler jsdom jsdom-global @vue/test-utils. No test runner or bundler is needed for this example.

Requiring the Libraries

Now we need to require the libraries. There is a slight caveat, explained in a comment, and in depth below the snippet.

// jsdom-global must be required before vue-test-utils,
// because vue-test-utils expects a DOM (real DOM, or JSDOM)
// to exist.

const assert = require('assert')

const Vue = require('vue')
const VueTestUtils = require('@vue/test-utils')

As the comment says, jsdom-global must be required before @vue/test-utils. This is because Vue Test Utils expects a DOM to be present to render the Vue components. If you are running the tests in a real browser, you will not need jsdom at all. Vue must also be required before @vue/test-utils for obvious reasons - Vue Test Utils expects to be available, as well. We also require assert from the node standard library. Normally we would use the matchers provided by a test runner, often in the format of an expect(...).toEqual(...) assertion, but assert will serve this purpose for this example.

Writing a Test

Now everything is set up, all we need is a component and a test. To keep things simple, we will just render some text and assert it is present in the rendered component.

const App = Vue.component('app', {
  data() {
    return {
      msg: 'Hello Vue Test Utils'

  template: `
    <div>{{ msg }}</div>

const wrapper = VueTestUtils.shallowMount(App)

assert.strictEqual('Hello Vue Test Utils', wrapper.text())

It's as simple as it looks. Since we do not have a build step, we cannot use Single File Components. There is nothing to stop us using Vue in the same style you would when including it from a CDN via a <script> tag, however.