The Best Recent Post Widget: Display Posts, by Bill Erickson

Search no more! “Display Posts”, a plugin by Bill Erickson, allows you to display recent posts in widgets and to customize them in almost every single way you want.

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With this amazing plugin you can, for instance:

  • display recent post of one specific category
  • display them as a grid
  • display the category next to the title
  • show thumbnails!

Check out the full documentation and read carefully its Parameters to see all you can do.

Here’s a quick guide on how to install it and customize it with CSS.

How to Install “Display Posts by Bill Erickson”

Go to your WP Dashboard > Plugins > Add New. In “Keyword” search box, write “Display Posts”. Click on Install, and that would be all.

Note: Even though it hasn’t been updated for a year, it works perfectly.

How to Add a Recent Posts Widget

To use this plugin, all we need is a “Text Widget” and using Bill’s shortcodes.

Head over to Appearance > Widgets, and drag a “Text Widget” to your sidebar, and then:

  1. Name your widget (for instance: “Recent Posts”)
  2. Write down your Shortcode using the parameters (mentioned above)
  3. Save it and click on done.

Now, let’s see some examples ?

Display all posts with: title, date and category

Here’s how my widget looks on my footer up to this date:

To achieve it, I used the following Shortcode:

[display-posts category_display="true" category_label="In " posts_per_page="5" include_date="true" date_format="F j, Y" wrapper="ul"]

However, it won’t look like that without some CSS. Here’s what I did in the snippets:

  1. I removed the bullets and the margin (I tried using the div wrap in the shortcode, but it didn’t look good; so, I did this instead)
  2. I displayed the category links and dates as blocks, to have them in separate lines
  3. I added the default font of the Twenty Twenty Theme to: the span elements and the widget if we put it on the footer
  4. I changed the color of the title links and made them bold
  5. I set a new size of font for the title that won’t be applied on the footer
  6. I changed the color of the date and the category label; and then, also the color of the category link
  7. I resized the font of the date, category label and category link
  8. I made the category label and category link look italic
/* -------------------------------------------------------------------------- */

/*	Widget Display Posts by Eric
/* -------------------------------------------------------------------------- */
.display-posts-listing {

.display-posts-listing .category-display,
.display-posts-listing .date {

.display-posts-listing span,
.footer-widgets .display-posts-listing {
		font-family:"Inter var", -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, "Helvetica Neue", Helvetica, sans-serif;

.display-posts-listing .title {

.display-posts-listing .title:not(.footer-widgets .display-posts-listing .title) {

.display-posts-listing .date,
.display-posts-listing .category-display-label {

.display-posts-listing .category-display a {

.display-posts-listing .date,
.display-posts-listing .category-display-label,
.display-posts-listing .category-display

.display-posts-listing .category-display,
.display-posts-listing .category-display-label {

I’ll add another example asap. Stay tune!