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TypeScript & GraphQL

In this tutorial, we will explore how to create a GraphQL API using TypeScript. We will cover the basic concepts of GraphQL and demonstrate how to use TypeScript to create a strongly typed and maintainable server-side application.

Introduction to GraphQL

GraphQL is a query language for your API and a runtime for executing those queries against your data. It provides a more efficient, powerful, and flexible alternative to the traditional REST API. GraphQL allows clients to request only the data they need, making it a perfect fit for modern, data-driven applications.

Setting Up the Project

To start, we will create a new TypeScript project and install the necessary dependencies.

mkdir typescript-graphql
cd typescript-graphql
npm init -y
npm install typescript ts-node @types/node --save-dev
npm install express apollo-server-express graphql type-graphql --save

Create a tsconfig.json file to configure TypeScript:

"compilerOptions": {
"target": "ES2020",
"module": "commonjs",
"rootDir": "src",
"outDir": "dist",
"strict": true,
"moduleResolution": "node",
"esModuleInterop": true,
"skipLibCheck": true,
"forceConsistentCasingInFileNames": true

Creating a GraphQL Schema

In this step, we will create a simple GraphQL schema using the type-graphql library. Create a new folder named src and a file named schema.ts inside it.

// src/schema.ts
import { ObjectType, Field, ID, Int, Resolver, Query } from 'type-graphql';

class Movie {
@Field(() => ID)
id: string;

title: string;

@Field(() => Int)
year: number;

class MovieResolver {
private movies: Movie[] = [
{ id: '1', title: 'Inception', year: 2010 },
{ id: '2', title: 'The Matrix', year: 1999 },

@Query(() => [Movie])
movies(): Movie[] {
return this.movies;

export { MovieResolver };

Setting Up the Server

Create a file named server.ts inside the src folder.

// src/server.ts
import express from 'express';
import { ApolloServer } from 'apollo-server-express';
import { buildSchema } from 'type-graphql';
import { MovieResolver } from './schema';

async function main() {
const app = express();
const schema = await buildSchema({
resolvers: [MovieResolver],

const server = new ApolloServer({ schema });
server.applyMiddleware({ app });

app.listen(4000, () => {
console.log(`Server running at http://localhost:4000${server.graphqlPath}`);


Running the Server

Add the following script to your package.json file:

"scripts": {
"start": "ts-node src/server.ts"

Run the server using the following command:

npm start

Visit http://localhost:4000/graphql

Querying the GraphQL API

Now that our server is running, we can use GraphQL Playground to interact with the API. Open your browser and visit http://localhost:4000/graphql. In the left pane, you can write queries to fetch data. Try the following query:

query {
movies {

Press the "Play" button to execute the query. The right pane will display the results, which should look like this:

"data": {
"movies": [
"id": "1",
"title": "Inception",
"year": 2010
"id": "2",
"title": "The Matrix",
"year": 1999


In this tutorial, we covered the basics of creating a TypeScript-based GraphQL API. We introduced the type-graphql library, which allows us to define GraphQL schemas in a strongly typed and maintainable way. We also demonstrated how to set up an Express server and use the Apollo Server middleware to serve the GraphQL API.

As you continue exploring TypeScript and GraphQL, consider learning more about mutations, subscriptions, and advanced schema concepts like input types, interfaces, and unions.