20 Best Ruby on Rails Gems to be Used in Web Development

Ruby on Rails is an outstanding framework for developing web applications with influential features that aid to increase the speed of your web app development utilizing an MVC pattern.

It is intended in such a manner that it can be simply prolonged employing the most popular Ruby gems presented by the Rails community.

Ruby on Rails is valued for its manifold ready-made solutions that facilitate rapid software development.Such speed is primarily obtained through utilizing Ruby on Rails gems – libraries with explicit functionalities that permit you to prolong and customize your Rails application.

In Rails, there are gems for every purpose, from authorization and authentication to testing and payment processing.

Let’s understand the Ruby on Rails concept and its feature-rich gems.

Ruby on Rails at a Glance

Source: Ruby on Rails

Ruby on Rails (RoR) is a server-side application framework that is written in Ruby under MIT License.

Rails is a model-view-controller (MVC) framework that provides default arrangements for a web service, database, and web service. It reassures and simplifies the usage of web standards, such as XML or JSON for the data transfer and CSS, JavaScript, and HTML for user interfacing.

In addition to the MVC pattern, Rails accentuates the employment of other popular software engineering designs and paradigms, comprising active record pattern, don’t repeat yourself (DRY), and convention over configuration (CoC).

Some of the popular companies that use Ruby on Rails are –

  1. Shopify
  2. GitHub
  3. Netflix
  4. Hulu
  5. Airbnb
  6. Groupon

Important Features of Ruby on Rails

Rails is opinionated software.It makes the notion that there is a better method to do things, and it is intended to encourage that technique and in certain cases to discourage options.

If you understand ‘The Rails Way’, you will increase your productivity.

If you continue to bring old behaviours from other languages to your Rails project development and strive to utilize designs you have learned somewhere else, you may get fewer contented experiences.

Therefore it is advised to develop websites with experienced developers. If you have a web app idea, it is best to outsource Ruby on Rails development to a RoR development company like us.

The Rails philosophy comprises two main guiding philosophies:

  • Don’t Repeat Yourself (DRY):

    DRY is a philosophy of software development that describes that ‘Every portion of information must have an unambiguous, single, and authoritative depiction within a scheme.’ By not writing similar information again, the code is more extensible, more sustainable, and less buggy.

  • Convention over Configuration (CoC):

    Rails has estimations about the greatest way to do several things in any web application, and defaults to the set of conventions, rather than necessitating that you specify details through infinite configuration files.

What Are Gems in Ruby on Rails?

Many of the programming languages like HTML, JavaScript, SQL, and CSS do not cover both backend and frontend.

Nevertheless, RoR language allows full-stack web application development and permits the developers to develop custom Rails apps. This makes Rails one of the most popular web frameworks as it has transformed the web development ecosphere through its practical method.

With Rails, every function, which you need for web app development can be found at your fingertips. You can excerpt what you need to continue ahead.

What Are Gems in Ruby on Rails

RubyGems is a package administrator for Ruby programming language that facilitates a standard arrangement for allocating Ruby libraries and programs in a self-sufficient format known as a ‘gem’, for developers interested in web scraping with Ruby, there are gems available that streamline the process of extracting data from websites, enhancing the capability to gather and process information efficiently. A tool intended to simply administer the installation of Ruby gems, and a server for dispensing them.

Rails Gems was produced by Jim Weirich, Chad Fowler, Richard Kilmer, David Alan Black, and Paul Brannan during RubyConf 2004.

For Ruby on Rails gems, an interface is a command-line tool termed gem which can install and administer the libraries.The gems incorporates a Ruby runtime loader to assist in finding and loading installed gems from uniform library folders.

Even though it is possible to use private RoR gems repositories, the open repository is most usually employed for gem management. The public repository aids the users to find Ruby gems, resolve the dependencies, and set up them.

A Ruby gem is bundled with a standard Ruby package as Ruby 1.9.

Want to Create a Web App in Limited Time?

Deadlines are tough. But using Rails Gems, you can develop a feature-rich web app within no time.

20 Top Ruby on Rails Gems to Use in 2022

We have curated a list of the most popular Rails gems for simplifying the development of custom Rails web applications. The 20 top RoR gems are –

  1. Pry

    Developers generally face the integration of library difficulties or issues in binding these Ruby gems while creating the code. During that moment, they have to transact with abundant errors.

    Therefore, it is better to hire RoR developers with a good amount of experience.With a view to eradicate these concerns and debug the blunders, Pry is considered to be a perfect choice.

    This gem permits its developers to make the breakpoints and device a code debugging gradually. Pry has an exclusive collection of traits, which comprises runtime invocation, syntax highlighting, exotic object support, command shell integration, flexible and influential command scheme.

  2. Draper

    To develop decorators around the model, the developers utilize the Draper gem. Drapers present attributes and encompass approaches for the object.

    Incorporating this gem, the view can be prepared cleaner and developers can easily describe a decorator without having to transcribe the helpers.

  3. ActiveRecord Import

    One more of the best Rails gems, ActiveRecord Import can be used to simply implant almost all of the records. It functions as per ActiveRecord associations while producing marginal SQL insert statements as necessary.

    With this gem, if you appoint a devoted Ruby on Rails developer with sufficient knowledge, they would not have to deal with the N+1 insert issue. ActiveRecord is a perfect option to upload ten records.

    Uploading numerous records with this Rails gem can validate to be an intimidating task. Though, it is tremendously beneficial for the import of exterior data. The transformation time is considerably reduced with ActiveRecord Import.

  4. Figaro

    One of the most popular RoR gems, Figaro is a Heroku-based Rails gems application arrangement.

    We require a YAML and an Environment Variables (ENV) record for a secure configuration of the web applications that are formed by using Rails.

    This gem exhibits a show, which is likely enough to retain the arranged data and SCM detached from one other. It analyses the YAML file and loads its value in the ENV.

  5. RSpec Rails

    Developers prefer RSpec Rails gem whenever they have to transcribe unit test cases, it enables the developers the incorporation of RSpec framework into a Rails assignment.

    This famous Ruby gem is utilized in test-driven web application development and behaviour-driven development environments, and it also displays descriptive and arranged syntax.

  6. Ahoy

    Ahoy, an analytics platform, is exercised to trace the events and visits in innate apps like Ruby and JavaScript.

    Ahoy is measured to be more of a Ruby instrument rather than a Ruby gem, accountable for making visit tickets that entails the client device information, traffic source, and location. The users can also examine the UTM parameters of site visits.

  7. Devise

    When building an application on any social media network or eCommerce solution, the developers typically require to log in to the social media page. They will be required to deliver authentication and authorization for a certain application.

    Where a few Rails developers favour utilizing their coding for the motive, other developers choose to employ a Ruby on Rails gem for verification.

    Devise gem is one of the best Ruby on Rails gems of 2019. It makes the work easy and operative.

    Devise take account of 10 modules, namely, Database Authenticatable, Omniauthable, Confirmable, Registrable, Trackable, Lockable, Recoverable, Rememberable, Timeoutable, Validatable, and FriendlyId.

    The resource URLs are effortlessly recognized by the main key (database ID) of every module.

    Nevertheless, the Rails developers may have to work with the non-optimized URL of the web page. FriendlyId simply converts the URL to an easy to recollect and much responsive web page URL.

    The greatest part is that it does not need any code amendments in the web application and that makes it a prominent Ruby gem.

  8. Delayed Job

    Delayed Job is one of the best gem Rails with context to taking caution of the more strained out consecutive activities for the background tasks. It can very well be extracted from Shopify, where several errands are taken into consideration by the job table.

    Delayed Job pearl is one of the best Ruby diamonds of 2019 when it comes to managing extensive running activities.

    A part of the new highlights of Delayed Job integrates sending an immense number of newsletters, image resizing, spam checks, group imports, updating smart collections, and HTTP downloads.

  9. Paperclips

    Functioning with the file attachments can be a cumbersome task, as it takes much effort and time for the developers to make protected employment of the assignment.

    And this is where Paperclip gems save their day. It keeps a close watch on the complete procedure in the Ruby applications.It can also alter the images into thumbnails for custom Rails application development.

  10. Cancancan

    Cancancan is perfect for building multifaceted applications. It allows the clients to have several rules, yet the developers require to restrain access for particular users.

    This gem presents the easiness of setting up the user access boundaries, and the entireness of this can be supervised in one spot only.

    The ‘Approvals definition library’ module of Cancancan sanctions the developers to form the strategies for clients. Similarly, it delivers the easiness of getting to innumerable objects to the assistants, given that they have to examine those permissions before any access.

  11. Kaminari

    With approximately 5 million downloads, Kaminari gets the top position in the list of most standard Rails Gems.

    You can paginate everything by employing this gem.Such pagination can be executed from ActiveRecord imports to simpler arrays by utilizing an easy-to-use scope-based application programming interface (API).

  12. Active Merchant

    This Ruby gem is possessed and retained by Shopify. The essential aim of Active Merchant is to inspire the users with an integrated API that presents access to the copious payment gateways employing dissimilar internal APIs.

    Though it was built particularly for RoR web applications, Active Merchant can similarly be utilized as the plugin. Additionally, it is also exercised as an autonomous library.

  13. Active Admin

    This framework develops the interfaces of management style. Active Admin excerpts the business application designs and makes it simple for software engineers to device wonderful and rich interfaces with less exertion.

    Its varied features include scopes, user authentication, global navigation, action items, filters, sidebar sections, downloads, APIs, and index styles.

  14. Webpacker

    On this Ruby gem list, Webpacker is explicitly envisioned for serving JavaScript. It provides benefits like CSS, textual styles, and pictures recognized with the component-oriented JavaScript.

    Webpacker can similarly be exercised for all the assets of Rails web applications.Normally, it presents an astonishing response for Rail application progression.

  15. Bullet

    The Bullet is intended for aggregating the functioning of an application by diminishing the inquiries.It keeps a close watch on the inquiries during the procedure of web app development.

    This gem of Ruby informs the users when (N+1) inquiries are required.The users are also informed when the counter cache is to be employed.

  16. Slim

    There are abundant format frameworks available in the market.Ruby on Rails employs the eRuby format framework.It is repeatedly something that the users will choose to replace.

    Slim is a distinctive replacement since it sanctions you to retain a simple-to-scrutinize arrangement because of its simple linguistic construction while keeping up rapid compilation times.

  17. Pundit

    It is crucial to understand the difference between authorization and authentication.

    The device endorses users and scrutinizes what their characteristics are, while the authorization assures that the client is allowed to act out any movement or access the features.

    Pundit works with this complete cycle by imparting a direct technique of portraying approved frameworks by employing Ruby classes only.

  18. FriendlyId

    The resource URL is typically found by their main key, which is generally its database ID. This can result in non-optimized page URLs which are not easy to comprehend.

    FriendlyId can certainly alter your URL to be a lot more friendly and easy to recall URL for practically no-code alterations in your web application.

  19. Sidekiq

    Sidekiq is one of the most widespread background processing tools in Ruby on Rails.This is the reason that its API is very simple and even has a better ascending capability than the rest of the background processors.

  20. Cells

    You will frequently reuse several components of your application.The partials are generally employed for this type of behaviour, but you must ensure that your controllers call the partials and all have congruent behaviour.

    Cells allow you to take the portions of your controller and exemplify them into their miniature controller. This assists you make your code clean and keep away from the long helper or partial or filter mess.

This was our collection of the 20 best Ruby Gems for developing a full-stack web application or website using Ruby on Rails. For more such best Rails gems, check out the official Ruby gem repository.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What are gems in Ruby on Rails?

    Ruby Gems is known as the package administrator for Ruby language that presents a classic format for dispensing Ruby libraries and programs. It distributes in an independent format termed as a ‘gem’, a tool that is designed to manage the fitting of gems and a server for allotting them. The interface for Ruby Gems is the command-line tool named gem which can set up and administer the libraries.

  2. How does Ruby gem work?

    Ruby Gems software permits you to download, install, and employ Ruby software packages on your scheme easily. Here, the software package is known as ‘gem’ which comprises a packaged Ruby application or library. Some of the gems deliver command-line efficacies to aid automate errands and speed-up the work.

  3. What is Ruby on Rails used for?

    Rails is an app development tool that renders the web developers a framework and provides a pattern for all the coding they do. The RoR framework aids developers to develop applications and websites, as it abstracts and streamlines the common repetitive errands.


Employing Ruby on Rails gems is the standard practice when building Ruby on Rails web apps.

The above-mentioned gems are effective enough to resolve any common issue in Rails app development.These can effortlessly solve the issues related to uploads, file testing, authentication, and authorization.

Moreover, these gems eradicate the requirement to redevelop the wheel for every app.

Nevertheless, the gems would not solve all of your application development complications. When you hire a dedicated ROR developer, he or she will need to work on them a little to build custom RoR web applications.

Monocubed being a custom website development company has experienced developers who are proficient with Ruby on Rails development. Contact us to get a free consultation with our RoR expert and discuss your web app idea with us.

Jeel Patel

Written by

Jeel Patel

Jeel Patel is the Founder of Monocubed and is the main curator & writer of the content found on this site. With ideals of quality, commitment, and perseverance, he believes in creating lasting business relationships with the clients.