go – Goquery loads empty document from distinctly not empty response-ThrowExceptions

Exception or error:

I’ve been trying to load a response into a goquery document, but it appears to be failing (though it throws no errors).

The response I’m trying to load comes from:


and while it doesn’t throw any errors, when I call fmt.Println(goquery.OuterHtml(doc.Contents())) I get the output:


Meanwhile, If I don’t attempt to load it into a goquery document, and instead call

s, _ := ioutil.ReadAll(resp.Body)

I get:

<!doctype html>
<!--[if IE 7]>    <html class="no-js lt-ie9 lt-ie8 no-touch" lang="en"> <![endif]-->
<!--[if IE 8]>    <html class="no-js lt-ie9 no-touch" lang="en"> <![endif]-->
<!--[if gt IE 8]> <html class="no-js gt-ie-8 no-touch" lang="en"> <![endif]-->
<!--[if !IE]><!-->
<html class="no-js no-touch" lang="en">

    <meta charset="utf-8">
    <title>Search | BBC Good Food</title>
    <!--[if IE]><![endif]-->
    <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8" />
    <link rel="prev" href="https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/search/recipes?page=3&amp;sort=created&amp;order=desc" />
    <link rel="next" href="https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/search/recipes?page=5&amp;sort=created&amp;order=desc" />
    <meta name="robots" content="noindex" />
        .async-hide {
            opacity: 0 !important
    ... etc

The basic logic of what I’m doing is as follows:

package main

import (

func main() {
    baseUrl := "https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/search_api_ajax/search/recipes?sort=created&order=desc&page="
    i := 4

    // Make a request
    req, _ := http.NewRequest(http.MethodGet, fmt.Sprintf("%s%d", baseUrl, i), nil)

    // Create a new HTTP client and execute the request
    client := &http.Client{}
    resp, _ := client.Do(req)

    // Print out response
    s, _ := ioutil.ReadAll(resp.Body)

    // Load into goquery doc
    doc, _ := goquery.NewDocumentFromReader(resp.Body)

The full response can be found here. Is there any particular reason why this won’t load?

How to solve:

Go’s html parser doesn’t seem to like the html you’re getting – the <html> tags are all within comments, so I think it’s just never getting going on the parsing.

If you prepend the document with <html> everything works fine from there. One way to do that would be with a reader-wrapper, something like the following, which writes the html tag the first time Read is called and delegates to resp.Body on subsequent calls.

import "io"

var htmlTag string = "<html>\n"

type htmlAddingReader struct {
    sentHtml bool
    source io.Reader

func (r *htmlAddingReader) Read(b []byte) (n int, err error) {
    if !r.sentHtml {
        copy(b, htmlTag)
        r.sentHtml = true
        return len(htmlTag), nil
    } else {
        return r.source.Read(b)

To use this in your sample code, change the final section like so:

    // Load into goquery doc
    wrapped := &htmlAddingReader{}
    wrapped.source = resp.Body
    doc, _ := goquery.NewDocumentFromReader(wrapped)

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