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How to Disable Gutenberg Editor in WordPress: 4 Easy Ways

Last Updated on January 12th, 2024

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WordPress is the leading content management system (CMS) used by millions of users across the globe. In 2018, WordPress released version 5 with the Gutenberg Editor, also known as Block Editor. 

The new block editor provides many unique features, like changing background images, creating modern layouts, and more. However, many website owners struggle to transition from the Classic editor to Gutenberg and get frustrated. Hence, they often ask if it is possible to disable Gutenberg altogether and revert to the classic WordPress editor. 

Secondly, various WordPress plugins are not compatible with the Gutenberg editor. Hence, they want to use Classic Editor. 

Disabling Gutenberg can be a valuable solution for those who want to continue using the classic editor or need to maintain consistency across their website. Here, we will explore 4 different ways to disable the Gutenberg editor in WordPress and switch to Classic editor in WordPress. 

Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced WordPress user, our guide helps you disable Gutenberg editor in WordPress and customize your content editing experience.

Before we move on with that, we will look at some basics of the Gutenberg editor.

What is Gutenberg Editor?

Gutenberg is a block-based editor available as default in WordPress since Version 5.0. It has replaced the old Classic WordPress editor, developed on TinyMCE. The primary purpose of the block editor is to enhance the WordPress writing experience. 

The editor works similarly to a page builder plugin, enabling you to drag and drop items on the page. As the name suggests, the block editor offers a wide range of blocks, which are nothing but individual units of content that be added, rearranged, or customized to provide vibrant & engaging web pages. 

It offers various types of blocks like media & text, image, gallery, video, audio, etc., that one can utilize to create pages or posts as needed. 

Overall, the Gutenberg editor is designed to make it easier for users to create and manage content in WordPress, with a more intuitive and visual editing experience.

Why Do You Want to Disable Gutenberg Editor in WordPress?

Even though the Gutenberg editor was released a few years back, it is still progressing. Many users who have expertise with Classic editor don’t want to utilize the Gutenberg editor. 

Besides this, various WordPress plugins are not compatible with the Gutenberg editor. Due to these reasons, they want to disable Block editor in WordPress. 

Surprisingly, there are different ways to disable the block editor in WordPress. Here, we will explain four ways to disable Gutenberg editor.

So, let us start.

How to Disable Gutenberg via Plugins – Method 1

Plugins that switch back from Gutenberg to the classic WordPress Editor work either by disabling Gutenberg or installing the classic editor.

The great thing about most of the plugins is that they allow you to switch between the two editors. That is ideal if you have different users working in your site’s backend, each with different preferences, or you may find one editor good for specific tasks but not others.

Here we present five plugins that will allow you to switch back to the classic editor.

1. Disable Gutenberg

disable gutenberg editor in wordpress

This lightweight, easy-to-use plugin can hide all traces of Gutenberg if you so desire, plus it has plenty of other features, including:

  • Disable Gutenberg in WordPress either entirely or selectively (posts, pages, roles, post types, theme templates)
  • Disable the Gutenberg admin notice (the ‘nag’)
  • Restores original Edit Post screen
  • Hide or display the plugin menu item
  • Adds a classic editor link to each post on the Posts screen
  • Adds a ‘Add New (Classic)’ item to the WordPress admin panel sidebar
  • Enable Custom Fields Meta Box for ACF
  • For each post, you can choose which editor to use
  • Whitelist any post title, slug, or ID
  • Disables frontend Gutenberg stylesheet
  • GDPR compliant
  • One-click restore plugin default options
  • Translation ready

It is an entirely free plugin and a great option allowing you to choose which editor to use for each post. There have been over 700,000+ installs of it to date, and its 5.0/5.0-star rating shows users really appreciate what it can do for them.

Get Disable Gutenberg

2. Remove Gutenberg

remove gutenberg editor in wordpress

Remove Gutenberg is a basic plugin that will remove the Gutenberg Editor from your WordPress, allowing you to switch to classic editor in WordPress. It features:

  • It enables you to switch your site between Classic and Gutenberg editors via an option available under the ‘Reading’ section of the WordPress settings menu.
  • It is incredibly lightweight code-wise and will not slow your site down.

The best feature of this free plugin is its amazing simplicity – it does exactly what it says. You install and activate it, and you’re ready to rock. It’s a relatively little-known plugin, with only around 700 installs to date, but it boasts an unbeatable 5.0/5.0 user score and is up to date.

Get Remove Gutenberg

3. Classic Editor

classic editor - switch to classic editor wordpress

When Gutenberg was first introduced, people were not ready for it. As such, WordPress was put under tremendous pressure to soften the blow a little. Their answer was to introduce their own official plugin allowing people to revert to the editor they were already familiar with.

What they came up with was the aptly named Classic Editor plugin. As you will have guessed, it reinstates the old classic editor that we know and love, including the ‘Edit Post’ screen. That means you can add the old-style meta boxes and basically do everything you could pre-Gutenberg.

This free plugin offers the following features:

  • It hides all Gutenberg functions by default.
  • Admins can select the default editor for all users.
  • Allow users to change the default editor to suit their preferences.
  • Users can be allowed to choose which editor to use for each post.
  • To maintain consistency, whenever a post is reopened, it defaults to the last editor used, irrespective of who last edited it.
  • It offers filters to allow other plugins to control the settings and the editor’s choice per post/post type.

Over five million active downloads of this plugin exist, and users rated it 4.9/5.0 stars, demonstrating that people were not fully ready for Gutenberg.

According to WordPress, this plugin will be “fully supported and maintained until at least 2024, or as long as is necessary,” so clearly, they anticipate that everyone will have transitioned to Gutenberg by then. However, the developers of the this plugin discussed earlier do not share that opinion, as they proudly declare that they will continue to update and support their plugin beyond 2024.

Get Classic Editor

4. Classic Editor Addon

classic editor addon - switch to classic editor wordpress

Classic Editor Addon is not a plugin that will remove Gutenberg and restore the classic editor per se. In fact, it is an addon that extends the functionality of WordPress’s Classic Editor plugin discussed above. As such, both plugins need installation, as Classic Editor Addon will not work in isolation.

The features of this addon are as follows:

  • Removes all residual Gutenberg settings that remain even after the Classic Editor plugin has been installed.
  • It removes the redundant style added to the <head> section of WooCommerce sites left by the Classic Editor plugin.
  • GDPR compliant.

So if you want to switch to the classic editor with no traces of Gutenberg, we recommend installing this addon along with the official WordPress Classic Editor plugin. Over 30,000 people have already installed the plugin, and it has got 4.9/5.0 stars, so it is clearly useful.

Get Classic Editor Addon

5. Enable Classic Editor

enable classic editor plugin- switch to classic editor wordpress

Enable Classic Editor has to be the lightest plugin code-wise for switching back to the classic editor, weighing in at a mere 3 KB. Of course, it is a super simple but basic plugin that will:

  • Disable Gutenberg
  • Reinstate the classic editor

This plugin has absolutely no bells and whistles whatsoever. Once installed, you will be working using the classic editor only – there’s no facility to switch between the two editors, but that will not be a problem for most people. That said, if you want to revert to Gutenberg for any reason, you have to disable or remove the plugin (something which applies to all plugins we have mentioned in this article.)
Over four thousand active installs of Enable Classic Editor exist, and users have given it full 5.0/5.0 stars. So it’s perfect if you want to turn your back on Gutenberg completely, and the fact that it contains so little code means no impact on your site’s performance.

Get Enable Classic Editor

All listed plugins have been updated within the last four months and tested up to WordPress version 5.7.2.

How to Disable Gutenberg Manually – Method 2

If you are worried about adding another code-laden plugin to your site, you’ll be pleased to know that manually disabling Gutenberg is super simple. All that is needed is to cut and paste some basic code into the functions.php file of WordPress, a job even the least tech-savvy people should be able to do.

We will now go through the most basic process – which will be suitable for most people, particularly beginners – to manually disable block editor in its entirety:

1. Log in to WordPress and head to the theme editor

Firstly, you need to log into your site’s WordPress admin panel. Once in, scroll down to ‘Appearance’ and click on ‘Theme Editor’ in the dropdown box:

how to disable gutenberg manually method 1 step 1

A warning message advising you not to meddle with the theme’s backend will probably pop up, but you can click on ‘I understand.’ If editing your theme freaks you out, hit ‘Go back’ and use a plugin to disable Gutenberg instead:

theme editor heads up!

2. Locate the Theme Functions

On the far right-hand side of the screen beneath ‘Theme Files,’ click on ‘Theme Functions (functions.php)’:

how to disable gutenberg manually method 1 step 2

At the top of the code that will now appear, you should see ‘<?php’ in the very first line:

how to disable gutenberg manually method 1 step 3

3.  Add the necessary code

Put your cursor at the end of this first line and press enter to add a new line. Next, copy the following code into that new line:

add_filter(‘use_block_editor_for_post’, ‘__return_false’, 10);

how to disable gutenberg manually method 1 step 4

Scroll down the screen and click the ‘Update File’ button.

Your theme should now be back to the classic editor, so all you need to do now is make sure everything is working as it should be. We highly recommend you make a backup of your site before doing any manual changes, as if you make any errors in the php code, it will cause significant issues with your site.

How to Disable Gutenberg Manually – Method 3

If the thought of tinkering with your site’s backend freaks you out, you can use a plugin instead to add the necessary code to your functions.php file. Such plugins allow you to efficiently run PHP code snippets on your site without having to mess directly with the PHP of your theme.

Several plugins are available, but we will use Code Snippets as an example. It is entirely free, and once it is installed and activated in the usual way, the process for disabling Gutenberg is very straightforward:

1. Login to WordPress and head to the Snippets editor

Firstly, you need to log into your site’s WordPress admin panel. Scroll down to ‘Snippets and click on ‘Add New’ in the dropdown box:

how to disable gutenberg manually method 2 step 1

You will see a blank form for the new snippet:

Add New Snippet

2. Name your snippet and add the code

Give your snippet an easy-to-recognize name in the ‘Enter title here’ field, then add the following code into the ‘Code’ field:

add_filter(‘use_block_editor_for_post’, ‘__return_false’, 10);

Make sure ‘Only run in administration area’ is selected and then hit ‘Save’:

how to disable gutenberg manually method 2 step 3

That’s it; you have added the necessary code to disable Gutenberg via a snippet. All that is left to do now is check everything is working as it should be.

Some More Ways for Disabling Gutenberg Manually – Method 4

If you are more familiar with coding, below are a few more suggestions on how you can get rid of Gutenberg, either in full or in part, by adding extra code to your site’s function.php file:

1. Conditional Disabling

WordPress versions less than 5.0 (beta) need slightly different code compared to what we mentioned earlier. Using conditional disabling, we can automatically check what version of WordPress is in operation, and accordingly apply the correct filter hook:

// Disable Gutenberg
if (version_compare($GLOBALS['wp_version'], '5.0-beta', '>')) {
	// WP > 5 beta
	add_filter('use_block_editor_for_post_type', '__return_false', 10);
} else {
	// WP < 5 beta
	add_filter('gutenberg_can_edit_post_type', '__return_false', 10);

2. Disable Gutenberg for Custom Post Types

Adding the following code to the theme will allow you to disable Gutenberg for specific post types:

function digwp_disable_gutenberg($is_enabled, $post_type) {
	if ($post_type === 'xxxx') return false; // change xxxx to your post type return $is_enabled;
add_filter('use_block_editor_for_post_type', 'digwp_disable_gutenberg', 10, 2);

If your site is still using an older version of Gutenberg (before 4.1) and WordPress before 5.0, then the code you should use to disable Gutenberg for custom post types is:

function digwp_disable_gutenberg($is_enabled, $post_type) {
	if ($post_type === 'xxxx') return false; // change xxxx to your post type
	return $is_enabled;
add_filter('gutenberg_can_edit_post_type', 'digwp_disable_gutenberg', 10, 2);

In either case, remember to replace xxxx with whatever your post type is.

3. Disable Gutenberg for Meta Boxes

One of the most unwelcome changes Gutenberg forces on developers and site owners relates to meta boxes, which no longer operate as they did in pre-Gutenberg days. It is a significant issue if your site has many plugins that use meta boxes, as revamping your site could be a considerable headache.

One workaround is to use the following code in your function.php to disable Gutenberg on any screens which use the meta box:


Remember, the WordPress Codex is the holy grail for all things relating to your site’s backend. You will find pretty much everything you need to know about functions, hooks, classes, and methods there.

Wrapping It All Up!

If you are a WordPress newbie, you may have never experienced the classic editor, in which case you may be happy sticking with Gutenberg. However, if you were weaned on the classic editor, transitioning away from it can be a real shock. As we have explained in this article, it’s not the end of the world, though, and there are some very workable solutions to allow you to revert back and forth between the two.

Which do you prefer, Gutenberg or the classic WordPress editor? Do you use a particular one exclusively or switch between the two depending on what you are doing? If you are using the classic editor, how did you switch back to it? Have you experienced any technical issues caused by switching? As always, we really love hearing about your experiences.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I completely disable Gutenberg?

You can disable the Gutenberg editor using plugins like disable Gutenberg, remove Gutenberg, Classic editor, etc. Besides this, you can manually disable the editor using code.

How do I disable new editor in WordPress?

You can disable the new editor in WordPress by going to the settings -> Writing page. Here, you get an option to switch back to the classic editor.

A team of WordPress experts that love to test out new WordPress related software, WordPress plugins and WordPress themes.