In Jekyll, you can use SCSS as a preprocessor - this helps for nest styles, handling variables and allowing imports.

The way you apply it is using .scss files in the assets/ and in _sass/ (Jekyll’s default SCSS directory).

Import notes

Import in assets

If you add an @import in assets, you’ll get a result that uses a url() call in the browser to load additional CSS Files.

Import in SASS

If you do any imports within the _sass directory, you’ll get your styling bundled in a single large file. This file can be more easily compressed and browser only has to do one request, but if you only need one portion of the file you’ll end up over-fetching.

See Assets in step 7 of the tutorial in the Jekyll docs. And see my Jekyll Blog Demo repo which is the result of following the tutorial.

Instructions below are collected from themes.

Minima theme styling guide

How to customize a site using the Minima theme.

Version 2.5

Based on the README, create a file like this.

Note the filename, frontmatter, import and then custom content.

This will bundle the theme’s SASS files with your own content to produce a single plain CSS assets/main.css file.

  1. Override the theme’s SASS variables before the theme is imported
  2. Load the theme from _sass/minima.scss.
  3. Then any custom styling using SASS or CSS>

Note you do not have to add to the _sass directory, just assets.

  • assets/main.scss simple example.
      @import "minima";
      a {
        color: blue;
  • assets/main.scss with SASS overrides.
      $base-font-family: HelveticaNeu;
      $brand-color: orange;
      @import "minima";
      h1 {
        padding-bottom: 2px;
        color: blue;

Here is the doc reference for Minima’s SASS files:

Refers to .scss files within the _sass directory that define the theme’s styles.

  • minima.scss — The core file imported by preprocessed main.scss, it defines the variable defaults for the theme and also further imports sass partials to supplement itself.
  • minima/_base.scss — Resets and defines base styles for various HTML elements.
  • minima/_layout.scss — Defines the visual style for various layouts.
  • minima/_syntax-highlighting.scss — Defines the styles for syntax-highlighting.

Version 3.X

See this part of the Minima docs for customizing.

Overriding just color variables is covered here for _sass directory:

In Minima 3.0, if you only need to customize the colors of the theme, refer to the subsequent section on skins. To have your CSS overrides in sync with upstream changes released in future versions, you can collect all your overrides for the Sass variables and mixins inside a sass file placed at _sass/minima/custom-variables.scss and all other overrides inside a sass file placed at path _sass/minima/custom.scss.

It is not clear from the docs, but it looks like in addition to the above, you must create a styles file under assets.


  • assets/css/styles.scss
      @import "minima/skins/{{ | default: 'classic' }}";
      @import "minima/initialize";


  • Front matter dashes at the very beginning (can be empty).
  • Directive to import a skin.
  • Directive to import the base styles (automatically loads overrides when available)

Architect themes tyling guide


  • assets/css/style.scss
      @import "{{ site.theme }}";

Add any custom CSS (or Sass, including imports) you’d like immediately after the @import line

Note: If you’d like to change the theme’s Sass variables, you must set new values before the @import line in your stylesheet.