I am trying to display code in my WordPress page and it isn't working. Everything I read says that you should be able to just use pre tag with code tag and it would be good but when I try to display a shortcode, it renders the shortcode rather than displaying the code.

The codex says that using pre and code would work but it isn't for me. Has anyone had this issue? Am I missing something in functions.php that makes this work?

5 Answers 5


To display a shortcode instead of rendering it you have two options:

  1. Write [[shortcode]]. WordPress will show this as [shortcode].
  2. Escape the [, write it as as [ or [.
  • Hi, mmy problem with the [shortcode] is that each time I edit the page they are changed to brackets characters..BTW, the 1st solution works fine for me
    – TOPKAT
    Feb 1, 2017 at 13:31
  • If you have a shorcode with content, put the extra brackets around the whole shortcode, not the beginning and end tags, ie [[shortcode]content goes here[/shortcode]]
    – SteJ
    Jan 8, 2019 at 18:20

Using &#91 tag will not work if you switch between the text and visual editor.

The [[shortcode]] solution does not work either with WP 4.1.1.

Instead, the following solution works:

Hello World

Worked for me: [shortcode] where &#91 is [ and ] is ] html codes.

Don't worked for me the one suggested by toscho: Write [[shortcode]]. WordPress will show this as [shortcode].


I tried all suggested answers, none worked for me.

Here is my (strange) way of showing [solr_search_shortcode]:

See it live here.


Wrapping brackets with <span>[</span> also seems to work

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