Top 6 Best Golang Testing Frameworks in 2024

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Relia Software


6 popular Golang testing frameworks are: Testify, Go Testing, Ginkgo, Gomega, Httpexpect, and GoConvey. Go testing frameworks include various tools and utilities.

Top 6 Best Golang Testing Frameworks in 2024

Table of Contents

All programming languages require a testing platform for developers trying out a combination of codes, testing run their latest programs, and experimenting with possibilities that boost software development inventiveness. Golang developers also have a variety of options when it comes to testing their code before they package it into publicly available software.

This article will talk in depth about various Golang testing frameworks, the procedure for testing Golang code, and help you decide what testing platform and method you should choose for the programs you write on Golang.

>> Read more about Golang:

What are Golang Testing Frameworks?

Golang Testing Frameworks are software platforms that allow Golang developers to test and experiment with their program before releasing it to the market. What sets Golang apart from other programming languages is its ability to multi-thread. Golang was primarily designed to compile software in significantly less amount of time compared to languages like C++ and Java.

Just like other programming languages, Golang requires rigorous testing before the application can be considered bug-free. In order to accomplish this, developers use a variety of testing methods, and testing platforms to run tests, and experiments and check the stability and usability of the program.

Dedicated VS Language-Agnostic Testing Frameworks 

Most programming languages either come with a dedicated testing environment or rely on a third-party tool for testing and debugging the code. Golang testing, to be particular, can be done in two different kinds of environments. The first is testing Golang code in a framework that’s designed specifically for Golang. The other is using a language-agnostic testing environment that can be used to test a variety of programming languages. 

Language-Specific Framework

There are Golang testing frameworks that are dedicated to the Go programming language and are beneficial for testing a wide range of Golang features. This testing environment is best for you if your projects almost always are based on Golang and you need a complex testing system for all of your applications. Organizations that purely use Golang or have a separate department for writing in Golang often promote these frameworks. 

Language-Agnostic Framework

If your organization or your projects work with Golang combining with other languages, a language-agnostic testing framework would be the ideal choice for debugging your code. These frameworks also provide you with great flexibility and support when you require any assistance with your code. One major benefit of a language-agnostic framework is that it isolates the original codebase and testing. This means that your code will remain pristine while you run tests and you can always revert back if anything goes wrong.

6 Popular Golang Testing Frameworks

There are various testing frameworks available for Golang that programmers use for various reasons. The choice of testing platform depends on the developer’s skill level and project requirements. Here are the 6 popular Golang testing frameworks that you should consider for your Go project:


Testify is one of the best Golang testing frameworks. Testify comes loaded with a ton of features that will make debugging your code a lot easier. There are assertion functions and mock objects pre-loaded into the testing environment which is a bonus.

On top of that, developers can even collect test data and create a shared testing setup with Testify to perform comparative analysis with their code. However, it doesn’t come without some drawbacks. Here are some pros and cons of Testify as a Golang testing framework:


  • User Friendly Interface: Testify has a very intuitive and user-friendly UI making it easy for beginners to test and debug their code. 
  • Mock Objects: Mock Objects allow developers to test with third-party dependencies and the ability to make assertions with messages makes testing more detailed. 
  • Supportive Community: Testify has a huge community of contributors and active users. There are channels on Slack where experts provide instant help to anyone with a query, so troubleshooting won’t be so difficult. 


  • No Coverage Report: Unlike most testing tools, Testify does not have its own custom coverage reporting. This means it relies on default go commands to generate reports which are sometimes not very thorough. 
  • Sparse Updates: Testify is not updated very often so testers will have to wait a long time for a cutting-edge code testing feature. The last update for Testify was released in August 2021.


package main

import (

func TestCalculate(t *testing.T) {
    if Calculate(2) != 4 {
        t.Error("Expected 2 + 2 to equal 4")

The test can be run by calling: go test ./... -v

Go Testing

Go Testing is the default Golang testing framework. While being fairly limited, Go Testing still provides some advantages to developers which makes it a good choice to debug your code. Especially, it is an ideal choice if you want things happening in a single place. We have listed some advantages and features of Go Testing below:


  • Benchmarking: Go testing is a simple and efficient way to benchmark your application code. If you want to design a quick and simple test to verify application behavior, Go Testing can be a good choice. 
  • Well-documented: Go Testing is very well documented and supported by the creators of the language from day one while it used to be a proprietary language. Ever since Golang became open-source, documentation has become more streamlined. 


  • Less Descriptive Reports: Test reports generated by Go Testing are not very detailed. Sometimes running complex tests can leave you with vague outcomes, especially if the test fails.
  • No Assertions: There are no assertions in Go Testing like in other languages, as it was not considered ‘best practice’ by the developers. Instead, Go moderators recommend that coders use table-driven tests (Unit Tests) which are not efficient to test the complexity of most applications.


package main

func hello() string {
     return "Hello there!"

func morning() string {
     return "Good morning!"


Gingko is a behavior-driven application testing framework designed for Golang. It is a feature-packed testing platform that makes the life of a developer a lot easier compared to our previously listed testing frameworks. Ginkgo provides them with fine control and organization of tests by various means. Here are some pros and cons of Ginkgo:


  • Container Nodes: Ginkgo has container nodes that assist the developer in organizing specifications and making assertions in their testing process. 
  • Custom Reports: There are several options and formats to choose from when it comes to report generation in Ginkgo that a developer can use based on the level of detail they want. 
  • CLI Tool: Ginkgo comes with a CLI tool that allows developers to filter, profile, generate test suites, and monitor test codes. If any changes are made to the code, the tests are re-run very quickly. 
  • Active Community: Ginkgo has a very active community of users and contributors who provide quick assistance to people in need. Also, the updates are released more often than other testing frameworks. 


  • No Parallel Testing: Despite having many features, Ginkgo does not allow running parallel tests which is sometimes required to make a comparative analysis of the codebase.
  • Assertions: While not exactly a con, the use of assertions goes against the very principle of Golang. It is considered bad practice, but this still is quite popular among developers.


var _ = Describe("Continent", func() {
   var (
       continent Continent
       err error
   BeforeEach(func() {
       continent, err = BiggestContinentFromJSON(`{
           "population":"4.4 billion people",
   Describe("loading from JSON", func() {
       Context("when the JSON parses successfully", func() {
           It("should populate the fields correctly", func() {
               Expect(continent.Population).To(Equal("4.4 billion people"))
           It("should not error", func() {

The above example uses multiple functions like BeforeSuite(), AfterSuite() and BeforeEach(), the test can be run using the command ginkgo generate.


Gomega is an assertions library that allows you to create custom assertions and matches and also provides complex test data as output. While it is not used popularly as a standalone testing environment, it sure comes with some notable features which are listed below:


  • Asynchronous Matchers: Gomega has the ability to run asynchronous matches that wait until a ‘promise’ is fulfilled until it provides the output for a test run. This is a great feature for developers who are looking for conditional outputs. 
  • Supports HTTP: Gomega also supports HTTP clients using the ghttp package which allows tests to share the same setup for multiple tests but specify different status code. 
  • Easy to Use: Gomega is a library and not a complete testing platform on its own, so it is pretty easy to use. You just need to install it as a package and set up your testing environment to start working.


  • Not Standalone: Gomega is not used as a testing framework but in combination with Ginkgo as an assertion and marker library to improve assertions. This makes it not very efficient by itself. 
  • Steep Learning Curve: Getting started to use Gomega can be a challenge to new programmers as it has a learning curve, especially when testing with things like HTTP clients and buffers.


This example is designed to watch certain events (CREATE, WRITE) and then take appropriate actions based on that.

go func() {
        for {
            select {
            case event := <-w.Event:
                fmt.Println(event) // Print the event's info.
            case err := <-w.Error:
            case <-w.Closed:


Unlike most Golang testing frameworks listed above, httpexpect is a specific framework that focuses on REST API and HTTP traffic in general. However, this is still a popular framework to test your Golang code as it has some unique features needed for application development and testing. Some of the features of httpexpect are: 


  • Assertions Support: Like Gomega and Ginkgo, httpexpect also supports assertions and makes it easy for developers to reach their intended outcome in less time compared to table-based testing. 
  • Chainable Builders: httpexpect has chainable builders that help create a detailed HTTP request adding various queries and parameters including cookies and payload. These builders are reusable and allow maximum flexibility to the tester. 
  • HTTP Support: Since httpexpect is primarily designed to test HTTP requests with Golang, there are numerous assertions that help developers check for status, payload and HTTP response codes. 
  • Detailed Reporting: The reporting in httpexpect is verbose and detailed. The failure in the codebase is proimply reported in a readable manner and response dumps are available right within the testing tool itself.


  • Infrequent Updates: Infrequent Updates: Despite being a popular HTTP focused testing framework, httpexpect is not updated frequently. It often falls behind when implementing the latest tools and methods to make testing more streamlined. 


Here is a simple example showcasing httpexpect test case.

func TestFruits(t *testing.T) {
   // create http.Handler
   handler := FruitsHandler()
   // run server using httptest
   server := httptest.NewServer(handler)
   defer server.Close()
   // create httpexpect instance
   e := httpexpect.Default(t, server.URL)
   // is it working?


GoConvey is a powerful BDD testing framework for Golang. This is another behaviour-driven testing framework that takes a different approach to application testing as it uses a Domain-specific language. Here are some unique features of this testing framework: 


  • DSL: GoConvey uses domain-specific language to test Golang applications which means it is not as complex as other general-purpose languages like C or Java. This makes debugging Golang pretty easy for new programmers as it's less technical. 
  • Self-Documenting Tests: GoConvey allows developers to design self-documenting tests that are provided with detailed reports. This makes it easy to keep track of the progress and functionality of the program. 
  • Web UI: One amazing benefit of GoConvey is its WebUI which means you can debug your Golang program right from your browser window from anywhere in just a matter of few clicks. 
  • Assertions: GoConvey also allows you to make assertions and things like Convey functions that allow you to set up the context for the debug test. 


  • Infrequent Updates: Infrequent Updates: GoConvey is popular both among programmers and project managers and is loved by many users around the world. However, the updates to this Golang testing environment are not very frequent.


Here is a simple GoConvey testing example that uses the Convey function and So function to make assertions.

func TestSpec(t *testing.T) {
   // Only pass t into top-level Convey calls
   Convey(&quot;Given some integer with a starting value&quot;, t, func() {
   	x := 1
   	Convey(&quot;When the integer is incremented&quot;, func() {
       	Convey(&quot;The value should be greater by one&quot;, func() {
           	So(x, ShouldEqual, 2)

>> Read more about software testing:


In the end, choosing the best Golang testing environment for your application is a completely individual decision. Choosing a testing framework depends on your specific project requirements, the level of expertise of the team members, and their familiarity with said tools.

Golang environment offers a wide range of frameworks that you can choose from, to debug and test your codes and all have some pros and cons. While some testing frameworks may provide a feature unique just to themselves, almost all of them get the job done for you in most cases.

Make sure to make an informed decision on your Golang testing environment and make use of it in the best way possible to make your software development journey fun and enjoyable.


What is the Role of Testing in Golang?

Like any other programming language, Golang codes need to be tested to make sure they work as intended to across all devices and platforms. The language itself comes bundled with a powerful library for coding and testing. However, the increasing complexity of modern software makes it difficult for Go’s testing library to do everything that’s demanded of it. Developers use a Golang testing framework to debug their code faster by cutting down on various repetitive tasks, making the entire software development process smoother and more efficient. 

Some advanced Golang Testing Frameworks come with a web UI that allows the developer to run tests and see live results on a browser window. Many frameworks also allow you to run parallel test runs and provide extended filtering on your codebase.

What are Testing Formats in Golang?

Golang developers focus on three particular testing formats for their code, which are listed below:

Unit testing:

Unit Testing is the most used level of testing that’s used by Golang developers worldwide. Unit testing software includes writing various individual-function tests, cross-function tests, and other tests that check the integrity and function of all the packages that are being used by the program. The idea behind unit testing in Golang is to check the performance and functionality of individual units present in the codebase.

Integration testing

Integration tests in Golang are the second step in testing the viability of the codebase. This test module checks the function and usability of various features and packages as a whole. It then checks if they are working as a unit in a proper way to make the application work as the developer has coded it. Module interface and interaction are the goals behind integration testing as this is one of the most significant parts of any modern-day application.

For instance, an inventory management system needs a frontend that needs to interact with an ‘inventory API’, and integration testing makes sure it does as planned. 

End-to-end testing:

End-to-end testing is a more advanced form of Golang testing. It combines integration tests from a part of the program into a series of combined test functions. This is a very complex testing mechanism and is often skipped by developers as it is very intensive and often not necessary if results with Unit and integration testing are satisfactory.

>> Read more: Top 10 Best End-to-End Testing Tools and Frameworks

Does Golang Have Its Own Testing Framework?

Yes! While Golang comes with its own testing framework for developers, it’s limited in terms of resources and use. This is why developers turn to other Golang testing frameworks for advanced features and testing criteria.

Golang testing frameworks include various tools and utilities for software developers like assertions and matchers which do not come with the default Golang test library. Most Golang testing frameworks come with features like reporting tools, automated testing, and mocking external dependencies with mock code. 

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