Frequently Asked Questions

Here's a list of frequently asked questions (FAQ) and how to resolve common issues in Panda.

Why do I get a "Cannot find X module from 'styled-system'" error?

This error seems to be caused by process timing issues between file writes. This has been fixed recently but if you experience this persistently, consider the following workarounds:

  • Check the code to git: Remove the styled-system folder from the .gitignore file to enable git tracking. Technically, the files emitted will remain the same if the Panda config does not change.

  • Use the emitPackage: true option and write the files to the node_modules directory.

Why are my styles not applied?

Check that the @layer rules are set and the corresponding .css file is included. If you're not using postcss, ensure that styled-system/styles.css is imported and that the panda command has been run (or is running with --watch).

How can I debug the styles?

You can use the panda debug to debug design token extraction & css generated from files.

If the issue persists, you can try looking for it in the issues (opens in a new tab) or in the discord (opens in a new tab). If you can't find it, please create a minimal reproduction and submit a new github issue (opens in a new tab) so we can help you.

Why is my IDE not showing styled-system imports?

If you're not getting import autocomplete in your IDE, you may need to include the styled-system directory in your tsconfig.json file.

How do I get a type with each recipe properties?

You can get a config recipe properties types by using XXXVariantProps. Let's say you have a config recipe named button, you can import its type like this:

import { button, type ButtonVariantProps } from '../styled-system/recipes'

You can get an atomic recipe properties types by using RecipeVariantProps. Let's say you have a atomic recipe named button, you can get its type like this:

import { cva, type RecipeVariantProps } from '../styled-system/css'
export type ButtonVariantProps = RecipeVariantProps<typeof buttonStyle>

How do I split recipe props from the rest?

You can split recipe props by using xxx.splitVariantProps. Let's say you have a recipe named button, you can split its props like this:

import { css, cx } from '../styled-system/css'
import { ButtonVariantProps, button } from '../styled-system/recipes'
interface ButtonProps extends ButtonVariantProps {
  children: React.ReactNode
export function Button(props: ButtonProps) {
  const { children, ...rest } = props
  const [buttonProps, cssProps] = button.splitVariantProps(rest)
  return (
    <button className={cx(button(buttonProps), css(cssProps))}>

The same xxx.splitVariantProps method is available for both config recipes and atomic recipes.

How do I reference a token value or css var?

You can reference a token value or it's associated css variable using the token function. This function allows you to access and use the values stored in your theme tokens at runtime.

import { token } from '../styled-system/tokens'
function App() {
  return (
        background: token('colors.blue.200')

Should I commit the styled-system folder?

Just like the node_modules folder, you most likely don't want to commit the styled-system folder. It contains code that is auto-generated and can be re-generated at any time.

How does Panda work?

When running pnpm panda, here's what's happening under the hood:

  • Load Panda context:
    • Find and evaluate app config, merge result with presets.
    • Create panda context: prepare code generator from config, parse user's file as AST.
  • Generating artifacts:
    • Write lightweight JS runtime and types to output directory
  • Extracting used styles in app code:
    • Run parser on each user's file: identify and extract styles, compute CSS, write to styles.css.

I'm seeing a "Could not resolve xxx" error with esbuild/tsup. What should I do?

In such a case, check the outExtension in your panda.config and set it to "js". This will ensure your modules are resolved correctly.

How should I use emitPackage with yarn PnP?

When using emitPackage: true with yarn PnP, set the nodeLinker to 'node-modules' in your .yarnrc.yml. This tells Yarn to use the traditional way of linking dependencies, which can solve compatibility issues.

Why does importing styled not exist?

You should use config.jsxFramework when you need to import styled components. You can then use the jsxFactory option to set the name of the factory component.

Why is my preset overriding the base one, even after adding it to the array?

You might have forgotten to include the extend keyword in your config. Without extend, your preset will completely replace the base one, instead of merging with it.

Why is my base condition not working in this example?

css({ color: { _base: 'red.600', _dark: 'white' } })

You used _base instead of base, there is no underscore _.

What's the difference between using defineConfig() vs definePreset()

defineConfig is intended to be used in your app config, and will show you all the config keys that are available. definePreset will only show you the config keys that will be merged into an app's config, the rest will be ignored.

How can I completely override the default tokens?.

If you want to completely override all of the default presets theme tokens, you can omit the extends keyword from your theme config object.

If you want to keep some of the defaults, you can install the @pandacss/preset-panda package, import it, then specifically pick what you need in there (or use the JS spread operator ... and override the other keys).

How do I make a design system / component library with Panda?

There is a detailed guide on how to do this here.

Can I use dynamic styles with Panda?

Yes, you can use dynamic styles with Panda. More on that here.

Should I use atomic or config recipes ?

Config recipes are generated just in time, meaning that only the recipes and variants you use will exist in the generated CSS, regardless of the number of recipes in the config.

This contrasts with Atomic recipes (cva), which generates all of the variants regardless of what was used in your code. The reason for this difference is that all config.recipes are known at the start of the panda process when we evaluate your config. In contrast, the CVA recipes are scattered throughout your code. To get all of them and find their usage across your code, we would need to scan your app code multiple times, which would not be ideal performance-wise.

When dealing with simple use cases, or if you need code colocation, or even avoiding dynamic styling, atomic recipes shine by providing all style variants. Config recipes are preferred for design system components, delivering leaner CSS with only the styles used. Choose according to your component needs.

Why does the panda codegen command fails ?

If you run into any error related to "Transforming const to the configured target environment ("es5") is not supported yet", update your tsconfig to use es6 or higher:

  "compilerOptions": {
    "target": "es6"

Can I set an alpha / add an opacity modifier on a color?

Currently, setting an alpha on a color like css({ color: "blue.200/40" }) is not possible. We are planning to implement this feature using the color-mix function.

However, note that color-mix is a CSS native function and is not yet supported in all browsers. You can follow the discussion about this topic on this GitHub link (opens in a new tab).

How can I generate all possible CSS variants at build time?

While it's possible to generate all variants, even unused ones, by using config.staticCss (opens in a new tab), it's generally not recommended to use it for more than a few values. However, keep in mind this approach compromises one of Panda's strengths: lean, usage-based CSS generation.

Can I use one-off media query and other at rules?

Yes, you can! You can apply one-off media queries and other at rules (such as @container, @supports) in your CSS as shown below:

  containerType: 'size',
  '@media (min-width: 10px)': {
    fontSize: 'xl',
    color: 'blue.300'
  '@container (min-width: 10px)': {
    fontSize: '2xl',
    color: 'green.300'
  '@supports (display: flex)': {
    fontSize: '3xl',
    color: 'red.300'