Enhanced Embed Block for YouTube


If you care about performance, privacy, and user experience, this block is for you.

This plugin enhances the default YouTube block—including any existing blocks—and changes their behavior to only load the video thumbnail until a visitor chooses to play the video.


  • Load YouTube videos faster (uses the lite-youtube custom-element)
  • Loads videos from nocookie.youtube.com for enhanced privacy
  • Works without JavaScript (shows link to YouTube video instead)
  • No plugin lock-in! Automatically improves all YouTube embeds. Turn it off and the behavior goes back to the WordPress default.

Want more features?

I’m considering building a PRO version with the potential following features:

  • Options to set a custom start and end time
  • Custom thumbnail images for videos
  • Custom aspect ratios for videos
  • Support for YouTube shorts
  • Control whether to load video from nocookie.youtube.com or not
  • Adjust the image quality of the thumbnail
  • Support for playlists, not just single videos
  • Full support for all YouTube query parameters (https://developers.google.com/youtube/player_parameters)
  • Classic Editor / [embed] shortcode support
  • Support similar features for Vimeo and other embed sources where possible

If enough people express interest, I’ll build it! Let me know if you’re interested!

Contribute on Github

Enhanced Embed Block is on Github for pull requests and bug reports.


This plugin uses the lite-youtube custom-element under the MIT license. Thank you to Paul Irish and Justin Ribiero for their work on that project.


  1. From your WordPress site’s dashboard, go to Plugins > Add New.
  2. Search for “Enhanced Embed Block for YouTube”
  3. Click “Install”
  4. Click “Activate”
  5. That’s it! You’re done! There are no plugin settings and the enhancements immediately apply to all YouTube video embeds.


Does this create a new block?

No. It enhances the default WordPress embed block for YouTube videos.

Does it automatically enhance all my YouTube embeds?

It works for any embeds using the YouTube block. Embeds using the [embed] shortcode or literal YouTube embed code in HTML are not enhanced. Using the core WordPress YouTube Embed block is highly recommended!

Why doesn’t Google load all videos this way by default?

Great question! It sure seems like they should. If I had to guess, they are prioritizing usage tracking over fast load times and privacy.

What happens if I deactivate the plugin?

Your embed blocks go back to how they were before.

Does this support the Classic Editor / the [embed] shortcode?

Not right now. If you’d pay for a PRO version with this feature, let me know.


There are no reviews for this plugin.

Contributors & Developers

“Enhanced Embed Block for YouTube” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.




  • Fix missing file on WordPress.org version of plugin due to misconfigured Github deployment
  • MAJOR CHANGE: The default poster image is now the highest quality possible. There is a new eeb_posterquality filter to change that, if desired. (#5)
  • Add experimental patch to the lite-youtube web component that detects missing YouTube poster images and fallsback to different format / lower quality (#4)
  • Add !important to all CSS styles to improve theme compatibility. Add custom properties to make color changes to fallback styles easier. (#8)
  • Add eeb_nocookie filter to customize domain for loading the YouTube iframe (defaults to nocookie) (#7)
  • Don’t use lite-youtube embed in feeds (#9)
  • Props to @cbirdsong for numerous issues on Github that led to most of these changes


  • Initial release to the WordPress repository!