A seamless JWT implementation for Laravel

v1.5.0 2020-09-09 16:21 UTC

This package is auto-updated.

Last update: 2022-12-09 21:49:38 UTC


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Laravel JWT provides a seamless JWT (JSON Web Tokens) implementation that integrates directly with Laravels authentication library allowing for stateless API authentication.

Table of Contents


To install this package simply run the following command.

composer require sprocketbox/laravel-jwt

This package uses auto-discovery to register the service provider but if you'd rather do it manually, the service provider is:



There are no extra configuration files required, but there are a few extra options when configuring a guard in config/auth.php.

Here's an example configuration for a JWT guard.

'api' => [
    'driver'   => 'jwt',
    'provider' => 'users',
    'key'      => env('JWT_KEY_API'),
    'signer'   => Lcobucci\JWT\Signer\Hmac\Sha256::class,
    'ttl'      => 'P1M',

Quick configuration

If you don't care to dive into all the extra bits you can create a very minimal JWT guard config by:

  • Changing the driver to jwt
  • Add 'key' => env('JWT_KEY_GUARD'), where GUARD is the name of your auth guard
  • Run php artisan jwt:generate guard where guard is the name of your auth guard
  • Make sure to duplicate the env variable, but not the value, into your .env.example file


If you wish to use the JWT driver, just set the driver option to jwt.


If you wish for your tokens to be signed you must, at the very least, provide a key using the key option. As the default signature uses a SHA256 HMAC, I recommend a 64 character key.

It's best you place this key in your env file as JWT_KEY or something similar.


By default this package will create a signature using a SHA256 HMAC, but if you wish to change that you can set the signer option to be the class name of a valid signer.

The default is Lcobucci\JWT\Signer\Hmac\Sha256 but there are other options in the Lcobucci\JWT\Signer namespace. If you wish to keep the default you can omit this option.


By default this package will set the TTL (total time to live) to 1 month, or more precisely P1M. If you wish to change this you can set the ttl config value to be a valid interval spec.

Custom generation

If you wish to generate the token yourself you can provide a custom generator like so:

Auth::guard('api')->setTokenGenerator(function (\Illuminate\Contracts\Auth\Authenticatable $user, \Sprocketbox\JWT\JWTGuard $guard) {
    return $instanceOfBuilder;

The generator must return an instance of Lcobucci\JWT\Builder.

Custom validation

If you wish to provide custom validation for your token you may provide it like so:

Auth::guard('api')->setTokenValidator(function (\Lcobucci\JWT\Token $token, \Sprocketbox\JWT\JWTGuard $guard) {
    return $validationState;

If the validation fails you must return false. Any other return type, including null will be treated as a pass.

Custom token signature generation

In some situations you may find that the static signing method and key in the config isn't sufficient. If that is the case, you can provide an override like so:

Auth::guard('api')->setTokenSigner(function (\Sprocketbox\JWT\JWTGuard $guard): array {
    return [
        new config('auth.guards.api.signer'), 
        new \Lcobucci\JWT\Signer\Key(config('auth.guards.api.key'))

This must return an array with two indexes, the first being the signer and the second being the key.

Generating keys

You can generate a key per guard by running the jwt:generate command with the name of the guard. The commands signature is:

jwt:generate {guard}
    {--length : The length of the key, defaults to 32}
    {--show : Display the key instead of modifying files}
    {--force : Force the operation to run when in production}


This package functions in an almost identical way to Laravels session authentication, with a few exceptions.

Providing the token

The token is loaded as a bearer token, so you must provide it as a bearer token in the HTTP authorization header.

Authorization: Bearer TOKEN_HERE

If you passed true as the second argument for attempt() the token will be automatically provided by the cookie, removing the need to manually pass the token.

Getting the token

The Auth::attempt($credentials) method is missing the second parameter (remember me) and instead of returning a boolean, returns an instance of Lcobucci\JWT\Token. Casting this object to a string will give you the actual JWT token.

If you wish to get the token currently being used, as in, the currently authenticated token, you can call the token() method on the guard, the same way you would call user()


Take the following code as an example:

$input = $request->only('email', 'password');
$token = Auth::guard('api')->attempt($input);

if ($token !== null) {
    return response()->json(['token' => (string) $token]);

return response()->json(null, 401);

Avoiding XSS

If you pass true as the second argument for attempt() the guard will create a HTTP only (Not accessible via javascript) cookie. This will prevent you from having to store the token in the browsers localStorage.

To make sure that the cookie is added to the response you need to add the following middleware to your routes.


It makes sense to add this to the api group. Though it's not technically required, I recommend that you also add the following middleware to encrypt the cookies.


It's also advised to simply return a 204 response when using this method so that the token data isn't output anywhere.


The login and authenticated events are called just like with the session guard.

The token

By default the token generation is somewhat opinionated, but that is because this is the initial version of this package.

The following covers how the claims are populated.

  • Issued by/Issuer (iss) is set to config('app.url')
  • Permitted for/Audience (aud) is also set to config('app.url')
  • Identified by/ID (jti) is a UUID4 generated with the token
  • Issued at (iat) is set to the current timestamp
  • Expires at (exp) is set to the current timestamp + the value of ttl (defaults to P1M)
  • Related to/Subject (sub) is set to the value of Authenticatable::getAuthIdentifier()

The token is generated using the lcobucci/jwt package.

The future

There are a couple of things that I wish to add into later versions of this package. I've made an attempt to list them all here, as a sort of roadmap.

  • HTTP Only cookie support (XSS)
  • Custom token generation
  • Custom token validation
  • Custom token signature
  • Database driven log of jti, aud and exp to blacklist and revoke tokens
  • Provide auth scaffolding for generating JWTs