Format click help output nicely with Rich.

  • Click is a “Python package for creating beautiful command line interfaces”.
  • Rich is a “Python library for rich text and beautiful formatting in the terminal”.

The intention of rich-click is to provide attractive help output from
click, formatted with rich, with minimal customisation required.


Native click help With rich-click


You can install rich-click from the Python Package Index (PyPI) with pip or equivalent.

python -m pip install rich-click


There are two main ways to set up rich-click formatting for your tool.
Which you choose will depend on your use-case and your personal disposition:

The path of least typing

Monkey patching is probably bad
and you should only use this method if you are a Responsible Developer.
It’s also good if you’re lazy, as it requires very little typing.
In fact, the whole thing can be done in just four lines:

import click
import rich_click
click.Group.format_help = rich_click.rich_format_help
click.Command.format_help = rich_click.rich_format_help

This overwrites the default click methods with those from the rich-click package.
As such, no other changes are needed – just continue to use click as you would
normally and it will use these custom methods to print your help output.

The good and proper way

If using monkey-patching in your project makes your palms sweaty and your pulse race,
then you’ll be pleased to know that you can also use rich-click in a nicely
declarative and verbose manner:

import click
import rich_click

class RichClickGroup(click.Group):
    def format_help(self, ctx, formatter):
        rich_click.rich_format_help(self, ctx, formatter)
class RichClickCommand(click.Command):
    def format_help(self, ctx, formatter):
        rich_click.rich_format_help(self, ctx, formatter)
@click.option('--debug/--no-debug', default=False)
def cli(debug):
    click.echo(f"Debug mode is {'on' if debug else 'off'}")

def sync():

(example based on the click docs)

Here we are making new Group and Command child classes that are based on click.
We define our custom format_help() functions and then tell click to to use these classes with the cls argument.


There isn’t really much you can customise yet, but this is planned.
I’m thinking:

  • Colours
  • Whether to print positional arguments or not
    • Could maybe provide custom args to give help text to these
  • The ability to break up commands and options into multiple named panels


Contributions and suggestions for new features are welcome, as are bug reports!
Please create a new issue
or better still, dive right in with a pull-request.


This package was put together hastily by Phil Ewels (@ewels),
but the hard work was really done by Will McGugan (@willmcgugan)
who not only is the author of Rich
but also wrote the original code that this package is based on.