Email previews with Rails

Ruby on Rails has built-in mechanism for previewing emails (HTML and text variants) in the browser. The list of all available previews is available at http://app.localhost:3000/rails/mailers/ (server must be running).

It will display a blank page if there are no previews yet.

To implement an email preview, create a new file (e.g. user_mailer_preview.rb) in /test/mailers/preview (for MiniTest) or /spec/mailers/previews/ directory (for RSpec):

# /spec/mailers/previews/user_mailer_preview.rb (for MiniTest)
# /spec/mailers/previews/user_mailer_preview.rb (for RSpec)

class UserMailerPreview < ActionMailer::Preview
  def welcome_email
    UserMailer.with(user: User.first).welcome_email

Now /rails/mailers/ should show:


  * welcome_email

Once welcome_email is clicked, it will render the preview of the welcome email for the first User (variant can be changed via Format dropdown).

Keep in mind that previewing feature requires a data to generate, and does not intercept email delivery flow. If email should be previewed instead of sent (e.g. during development), letter_opener_web is one of the solutions.