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I'm working on a fallback menu for a WordPress theme I'm working on. The main menu's menu_class renders a ul which is what I want.

However, if I use the menu fallback, the menu_class renders a div instead. Is there a way to make Wordpress render a ul for the fallback menu instead of a div?

Here's my code:

 function clarity_main_nav_fallback() {


    'show_home' => true,
    'container' => false,                           // remove nav container
    'container_class' => 'menu clearfix',           // class of container (should you choose to use it)
    'menu_class' => 'nav navbar-nav'              // adding custom nav class


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up vote 3 down vote accepted

First, I think you're confusing the wp_nav_menu() args. The 'menu_class' parameter defines the class added to the menu element, which by default is <ul>, as per the 'items_wrap' parameter. The default 'menu_class' is 'menu', which results in <ul class="menu">.

The real issue is actually the fallback_cb - the callback used when no menu is defined - which defaults to wp_page_menu().

Now, both wp_nav_menu() and wp_page_menu() output an unordered list (<ul>) wrapped by a container (<div>) by default. In your call to wp_nav_menu(), you have: 'container' => false, which overrides the menu list being wrapped by a container <div>. But that parameter does not get passed to the default wp_page_menu() callback output.

The easiest solution would be to define your own callback:

wp_nav_menu( array(
    // Add your normal args here
    'fallback_cb' => 'wpse116656_nav_menu_cb'
) );

Then declare your callback function:

function wpse116656_nav_menu_cb() {
    wp_page_menu( array(
        // Args here
    ) );

Now, here's the caveat:

  • wp_nav_menu() applies the 'menu_class' parameter to the unordered list

    (<div><ul class="$menu_class"></ul></div>)

  • wp_page_menu() applies the 'menu_class' parameter to the wrapper container outside the menu list

    (<div class="$menu_class"><ul></ul></div>)

So, you'll need to account for that with your CSS.

share|improve this answer
You are right @Chip Bennet! I was totally confused. – Johann Oct 3 '13 at 16:44

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