Setup the Recent Posts Plus widget with thumbnails

By default you get a basic recent posts widget that simply displays text only which usually is the post title that is linked and perhaps the date. The Recent Posts plugin gives you a very flexible widget to display your latest posts with several optional settings that includes enabling or disabling elements, adding thumbnails, control your excerpts, and more. I would recommend you check out the developer’s documentation for this plugin. 

  1. Go to Plugins >> Add New
  2. Search for “Recent Posts Plus” to install and activate

The Demo Site Settings

Settings for this plugin can be used as an option which will match those of the live demo site for Circumference. First, you will need to drag a Recent Posts Plus widget into the location you want; in this case, the Right Sidebar. Now you can set your options as follows:

  1. Title your widget
  2. Choose the number of posts you want to display
  3. Include Post Thumbnail
  4. Include Post Excerpt
  5. Show Excerpt options
    1. Limit Post Title = 30 char
    2. Limit Post Excerpt = 80 char
    3. Limit Ellipsis = …
    4. Post Date Format = F j, Y
    5. Thumbnail Size = 80 x 80
    6. Set your Query as with the code I’ve provided you (see below)
    7. Set your Widget Output Template I’ve provided you (see below)
  6. Click Save

Query Code

Change the category ID’s 1,2,3, etc., to your own categories because everyone will have different ID’s. Separate each ID with a comma.

{"cat": "1,2,3"}

Widget Output Template Code

<li>{THUMBNAIL}<div class="rpp-box"><h4><a title="{TITLE_RAW}" href="{PERMALINK}">{TITLE}</a></h4>
<div class="rpp-date">{DATE}</div>{EXCERPT}</div></li>


Please note that in order to display a thumbnail, your post needs to have a “Featured Image” attached to it.

Screencast Tutorial