AdonisJS ships with an official package for sending emails. It internally uses nodemailer to send emails but removes the boilerplate for manually constructing transports and allows trapping emails during tests, so that they are not sent to the real recipients.

By the end of this guide, you will know:

  • How to install and configure the mail package
  • How to create and use multiple mailers
  • Trapping emails during tests
  • Previewing emails on a dummy SMTP server


Install the @adonisjs/mail package from npm registry using the following command.

The @adonisjs/mail package relies on @adonisjs/view package. Make sure the view package is installed and configured correctly.

npm i @adonisjs/[email protected]
yarn add @adonisjs/[email protected]

Invoke Generator

AdonisJS packages can configure themselves by running the post install instructions. Run the following command to setup @adonisjs/mail package.

node ace invoke @adonisjs/mail

#   create    config/mail.ts
#   create    contracts/mail.ts
#   update    .env
#   update    tsconfig.json { types += @adonisjs/mail }
#   update    .adonisrc.json { providers += @adonisjs/mail }
# ✔ create    ace-manifest.json

Supported drivers

The mail module out of the box supports the following drivers.

  • smtp ( Uses the SMTP protocol )
  • ses ( Uses AWS SES )
  • mailgun ( Uses mailgun service )
  • sparkpost ( Uses sparkpost service )


The configuration for the mail package is stored inside the config/mail.ts file. Inside the config file, you can define one or more mailers, along with the default mailer to use.

import Env from '@ioc:Adonis/Core/Env'
import { MailConfig } from '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail'

const mailConfig: MailConfig = {
  mailer: 'smtp',

  mailers: {
    smtp: {
      driver: 'smtp',
      host: Env.get('SMTP_HOST') as string,
      port: Env.get('SMTP_PORT') as string,

    ses: {
      driver: 'ses',
      apiVersion: '2010-12-01',
      key: Env.get('SES_ACCESS_KEY') as string,
      secret: Env.get('SES_ACCESS_SECRET') as string,
      region: Env.get('SES_REGION') as string,
      sslEnabled: true,
      sendingRate: 10,
      maxConnections: 5,

    mailgun: {
      driver: 'mailgun',
      baseUrl: '',
      key: Env.get('MAILGUN_API_KEY') as string,

    sparkpost: {
      driver: 'sparkpost',
      baseUrl: '',
      key: Env.get('SPARKPOST_API_KEY') as string,

export default mailConfig

Points to note

  • You can create multiple mailers using the same underlying driver. For example: A mailer to send promotional emails and another one to send transactional.

  • When defining a new mailer inside the config file, it needs to be first registered inside contracts/mail.ts file. Otherwise, the typescript compiler will complain.

    declare module '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail' {
      import { MailDrivers } from '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail'
      interface MailersList {
        smtp: MailDrivers['smtp'],
        ses: MailDrivers['ses'],
        mailgun: MailDrivers['mailgun'],
        sparkpost: MailDrivers['sparkpost'],
  • To switch between mailers, you can use Mail.use('<MAILER NAME>') method.

  • Finally, feel free to remove the configuration for the mailers you are not planning to use.

Mailgun config

The mailgun configuration block optionally accepts the following options.

Config optionMailgun variant

All of the options except oDkim can be passed during the Mail.send call as well.

await Mail.use('mailgun').send((message) => {
  message.subject('Welcome Onboard!')
}, {
  oTag: ['signup'],

Sparkpost config

The sparkpost configuration block optionally accepts the following options.

Config optionSparkpost variant

All of the configuration options can also be defined at runtime during the Mail.send call.

await Mail.use('sparkpost').send((message) => {
  message.subject('Welcome Onboard!')
}, {
  transaction: true,
  openTracking: false,


Once done with the setup, you can import the Mail module and send emails using the Mail.send method.

import Mail from '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail'

Mail.send((message) => {
    .from('[email protected]')
    .to('[email protected]')
    .subject('Welcome Onboard!')
    .htmlView('emails/welcome', { name: 'Virk' })
  • The Mail.send method accepts a callback function.
  • Inside the callback, you can configure the mail message by calling the appropriate methods.
  • At bare minimum, you must define from, to, subject and the content of the email using the htmlView method.

Defer email sending

Most of the times, you will be sending emails in respond to some action. For example: Send email after user registration or during the password reset flow.

import User from 'App/Models/User'
import Mail from '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail'

export default class UsersController {

  public async store () {
    const user = await User.create({})

    await Mail.send((message) => {      // ...configure message    })
    return user


In the above example, the HTTP request to create the user will have to wait until the email is sent and hence makes your application appear slower.

To change this behavior, you need to make sure that the email is sent in the background and not during the HTTP request and the same can be achieved using the Mail.sendLater method.

The Mail.sendLater method uses an in-memory queue to send emails in the background. For critical emails, you may want to use a real queue server, since an in-memory queue will loose all the jobs when server goes down.

export default class UsersController {

  public async store () {
    const user = await User.create({})

    // Pushed to in-memory queue    await Mail.sendLater((message) => {      // ...configure message

    return user


Creating email templates

You can make use of standard edge templates for defining email content. The templates lives inside the same resources/views directory. For better organization, you can move them inside a sub-directory called emails. For example:

node ace make:view emails/welcome

# ✔  create    resources/views/emails/welcome.edge

Open the newly created template file and paste following contents inside it.

<h1> Welcome {{ user.fullName }} </h1>
  <a href="{{ url }}">Click here</a> to verify your email address.

Finally, you can use this view as the content for the email by calling the following method.

await Mail.sendLater((message) => {
  message.htmlView('emails/welcome', {
    user: { fullName: 'Some Name' },
    url: '',

Similarly, you can also define the plain text content, along with the content for the Apple watch.

Plain text
message.textView('emails/welcome.plain', {})
Apple watch
message.watchView('emails/', {})

Sending attachments

You can send attachments in email using the message.attach or message.embed methods.

import Application from '@ioc:Adonis/Core/Application'

await Mail.sendLater((message) => {
  • The message.attach method needs an absolute path to the file.
  • Application.publicPath returns an absolute path for the public directory inside your project root.
  • The public directory is used just as an example. You can attach files from any directory.

CID attachments

There are multiple ways to render images inside the email body. One of them is sending the image as an attachment and then adding it to the HTML using it's Content-Id (CID).

await Mail.sendLater((message) => {
Email template
<img src="cid:a-unique-id-for-the-attachment" />

Points to note

  • You have to use message.embed method and not message.attach.
  • Each embedded image must have a unique id, so that you can later reference it inside the template.
  • The img[src] needs the unique id, along with the cid: prefix.
  • Learn more about CID attachments.

Switching mailers at runtime

You can make use of the Mail.use() method to switch between the mailers.

The use method accepts the mailer name and not the driver name. Remember, you can create multiple mailers using the same underlying driver.

Mail.use('mailgun').send(() => {})
Mail.use('smtp').send(() => {})

SMTP server previews

Emails are tricky and hence there are dozens of tools/products to help you find issues with your emails. AdonisJS also provides a handy way to test your emails by sending them to a dummy SMTP server.

Consider the following example:

const { url } = await Mail.preview((message) => {
    .from('[email protected]')
    .subject('Welcome Onboard!')

console.log(`Preview url: ${url}`)
  • You just need to replace the Mail.send method with the Mail.preview method.
  • The response contains the URL to view the email on

Debugging email calls

The mail module emits adonis:mail:sent event that you can listen to observe email calls. Let's begin by creating start/events.ts file by running the following ace command.

node ace make:prldfile events
# ✔  create    start/events.ts

Open the newly created file and paste the following contents inside it.

import Event from '@ioc:Adonis/Core/Event'
import Mail from '@ioc:Adonis/Addons/Mail'

Event.on('adonis:mail:sent', Mail.prettyPrint)

Now, if you send an email, it will be pretty printed on the terminal.

The Mail.prettyPrint method is just one way to handle the event. You are free to define your own event listener and handle the event. The event listener receives only a single argument of MailEventData type.