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ELL Blog

Creating a Blog With GitHub Pages and Hugo

I created this blog using Hugo and host it on GitHub Pages. In this tutorial, I’ll teach you to do the same. The resources I had used to create a working blog left out some important details that I will include in my tutorial. I’ve also done the brunt of the work to perfect the theme and workflow. If you are like me, you can follow the tutorial that forks my site rather than making a blog site from scratch.


  1. Hugo is “installed” and can be used (test hugo version)
  2. git is installed and can be used (test git version)
  3. If either test fails (i.e. not on PATH), learn from how to add to PATH
  4. VS Code + Hugo Helper extension

Forking My Blog

  1. Web UI fork with repository name blog and use your own description
  2. Go to
  3. Select the source as gh-pages (you may need to create this branch)
  4. For folder select /
  5. Click save
  6. Add a custom domain if you want later since it takes 5+ minutes
  7. Edit the About section in and change the website to or a domain
  8. Clone your repo using git clone --recurse-submodules -j8 or GitHub desktop
    • also set git config --global submodule.recurse true
  9. Delete content/posts and static/images
    • Add your own favicon.ico to static/images
  10. Edit config.yaml and replace my information with yours
    • set baseUrl to the one shown by GitHub
    • change the author, email, utterancesRepo, and social
    • install Utterances to your github repository to enable comment section
  11. You can remove # to enable certain features (the about section requires uses content/ and content/
  12. Read content/ in your new repo to help you write, edit, and publish posts

From Scratch

  1. Create a repository in GitHub
  2. Ensuring your articles publish
    • Click “Actions” (beside Pull Request), “New workflow”, “Set up…”
    • Enter the name “gh-pages.yml”
    • Copy sample workflow from my repo
    • If you’re default branch name (e.g. main) is not master, replace the two occurrences of master with your default branch name
    • Save
  3. Clone your repository using git clone https://...
  4. Get the GitHub link for a theme
  5. Add the theme using git submodule add GitHubURL.git themes/themeName
  6. Read the theme instructions for basic configuration (i.e. config.yaml or config.toml)
  7. Edit config.yaml or config.toml
    • Also add your own favicon.ico to static/images
  8. Use hugo new content/posts/ to create a new post
    • Alternative: use the hugo helpers, “Hugo: create content” command
  9. Use hugo serve -D when drafting the post and see your changes at http://localhost:1313/
  10. Set draft: false after you are done drafting a post
  11. Add with git clone --recurse-submodules -j8 clone instructions
  12. Commit and push to origin (GitHub)
  13. To update your themes, use git submodule update --remote --merge

Look into Utterances for comment section.

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