Embrace the Future of Serverless: Integrating Next.js with AWS Amplify and Tailwind CSS

Serverless technologies have been getting a lot of attention in the web development world lately, and for good reason. With serverless architecture, you can focus on writing code instead of worrying about the underlying infrastructure. Plus, it's highly scalable and cost-effective. In this tutorial, we will show you how to build a modern full-stack application using Next.js, AWS Amplify, and Tailwind CSS.

What is Next.js?

Next.js is a popular React framework that provides server-side rendering and automatic code splitting, making it easy to build fast, responsive, and SEO-friendly web applications. It also supports static site generation, which can boost performance by pre-rendering pages at build-time and serving them directly from a CDN.

What is AWS Amplify?

AWS Amplify is a set of development tools and services that make it easy to build scalable and secure cloud-powered applications, including serverless functions, APIs, and authentication. It also provides a developer-friendly CLI and a web-based console for managing your infrastructure and deploying your code.

What is Tailwind CSS?

Tailwind CSS is a utility-first CSS framework that makes it easy to design responsive and customizable user interfaces without writing any custom CSS. It provides a set of pre-defined classes that you can use directly in your HTML, as well as an optional JIT compiler that generates optimized CSS on-the-fly.

Setting up Your Development Environment

Before we dive into the code, let's make sure we have everything we need to get started. We assume that you already have Node.js and npm installed. If not, please visit the Node.js website and download the latest LTS version for your platform.

First, we want to create a new Next.js project:

$ npx create-next-app my-app

Then we want to install the AWS Amplify CLI:

$ npm install -g @aws-amplify/cli

Finally, we want to install Tailwind CSS and a few other dependencies:

$ npm install tailwindcss postcss-preset-env autoprefixer

Now we're ready to start coding!

Creating a New AWS Amplify Project

The first thing we want to do is to create a new AWS Amplify project:

$ amplify init

Follow the prompts and choose the default settings for most of the options. When you are prompted to choose the type of app that you are building, select javascript and react. When you are prompted to choose the AWS profile, select the profile that you want to use.

After the initialization is complete, you should see a new amplify/ directory in your project:

$ tree -L 1 -d
├── .next
├── amplify
├── node_modules
├── pages
├── public
├── styles
└── utils

Now we're ready to add some AWS Amplify services to our project!

Adding AWS Amplify Services

Let's start by adding authentication to our project:

$ amplify add auth

Again, follow the prompts and choose the default settings for most of the options. When you are prompted to choose the authentication provider, select default settings. When you are prompted to configure advanced settings, select No, I am done.

After the authentication is added, you should see a new aws-exports.js file in your project. This file contains the AWS credentials and configuration that your application needs to interact with the AWS services:

// aws-exports.js
export default {
  aws_project_region: "us-east-1",
  aws_cognito_identity_pool_id: "us-east-1:xxxxxxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxxxxxxxxxx",
  aws_cognito_region: "us-east-1",
  aws_user_pools_id: "us-east-1_xxxxxxx",
  aws_user_pools_web_client_id: "xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx",
  oauth: {},
  aws_appsync_region: "us-east-1",
  aws_appsync_authenticationType: "API_KEY",
  aws_appsync_apiKey: "xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx",
  aws_cloud_logic_custom: [
      name: "mylambda",
      endpoint: "https://xxxxxxxxxx.execute-api.us-east-1.amazonaws.com/dev",
      region: "us-east-1"

Now let's add a GraphQL API to our project:

$ amplify add api

Select the following options:

  • GraphQL
  • API key
  • No authorization
  • Single object with fields (e.g., “Todo” with ID, name, description)
  • Enter a name for your GraphQL API:
  • Use amplifyPush to build and deploy our frontend
  • Do you want to generate code for your newly created GraphQL API?
  • Yes, I want to generate CRUD operations
  • Do you want to enable real-time data?
  • No

After the API is added, you should see a new src/graphql directory in your project, containing the GraphQL schema and generated code:

$ tree -L 1 -d src/
├── graphql
├── pages
└── utils

Now we can start building our application!

Building the Application

First, let's create a new page for our application:

$ touch pages/index.js

Then we can add some sample code to the page:

// pages/index.js
import { withAuthenticator } from '@aws-amplify/ui-react';

function HomePage() {
  return (
      <h1>Hello, World!</h1>

export default withAuthenticator(HomePage);

The withAuthenticator higher-order component (HOC) wraps our HomePage component and adds authentication features to it. It will redirect unauthenticated users to the sign-in page and handle authentication events for us.

We can now start the development server:

$ npm run dev

Open your browser and go to http://localhost:3000/. You should see your application running!

Styling the Application with Tailwind CSS

Now let's add Tailwind CSS to our project and use it to style our application. First, create a new tailwind.config.js file in your project:

$ npx tailwindcss init -p

The -p flag tells Tailwind CSS to generate a postcss.config.js file for us. Open the postcss.config.js file and add the postcss-preset-env and autoprefixer plugins:

// postcss.config.js
module.exports = {
  plugins: [

Now we can import the Tailwind CSS styles in our page:

// pages/index.js
import { withAuthenticator } from '@aws-amplify/ui-react';
import 'tailwindcss/tailwind.css';

function HomePage() {
  return (
    <div className="max-w-md mx-auto p-4 bg-white rounded-md shadow-md">
      <h1 className="text-3xl font-bold text-gray-800 mb-4">Hello, World!</h1>
      <p className="text-gray-600">Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Suspendisse suscipit mauris id arcu euismod, vel fermentum augue tincidunt.</p>

export default withAuthenticator(HomePage);

The max-w-md, mx-auto, p-4, bg-white, rounded-md, and shadow-md classes are predefined utilities provided by Tailwind CSS. They control the maximum width, horizontal centering, padding, background color, border radius, and shadow of the container div.

The text-3xl, font-bold, text-gray-800, and mb-4 classes are predefined utilities provided by Tailwind CSS. They control the font size, font weight, text color, and margin bottom of the heading.

The text-gray-600 class is also a predefined utility provided by Tailwind CSS. It controls the text color of the paragraph.

Save the file and refresh your browser. You should see your application styled with Tailwind CSS!

Deploying the Application to AWS Amplify

Now we're ready to deploy our application to AWS Amplify. First, commit your changes to your repository:

$ git init
$ git add .
$ git commit -m "Initial commit"

Then, create a new repository on GitHub or your preferred version control system and push your changes:

$ git remote add origin <git-repository-url>
$ git push -u origin master

Finally, use the AWS Amplify console or CLI to deploy your application:

$ amplify push

Follow the prompts and choose the default settings for most of the options. When you are prompted to choose the environment, select dev.

After the deployment is complete, you should see your application running on the AWS Amplify console. You can also access it using the URL provided by the console.


In this tutorial, we have shown you how to build a modern, full-stack application using serverless technologies like Next.js, AWS Amplify, and Tailwind CSS. We have discussed how to set up an easy and efficient development workflow that allows seamless collaboration. We hope that you found this tutorial informative and that you are excited to explore the world of serverless web development further!