Python Tkinter Menu


The goal of this widget is to allow us to create all kinds of menus that can be used by our applications. The core functionality provides ways to create three menu types: pop-up, toplevel and pull-down.

It is also possible to use other extended widgets to implement new types of menus, such as the OptionMenu widget, which implements a special type that generates a pop-up list of items within a selection.


Here is the simple syntax to create this widget:

 w = Menu ( master, option, ... )


  • master: This represents the parent window.

  • options: Here is the list of most commonly used options for this widget. These options can be used as key-value pairs separated by commas.

activebackgroundThe background color that will appear on a choice when it is under the mouse.
activeborderwidthSpecifies the width of a border drawn around a choice when it is under the mouse. Default is 1 pixel.
activeforegroundThe foreground color that will appear on a choice when it is under the mouse.
bgThe background color for choices not under the mouse.
bd The width of the border around all the choices. Default is 1.
cursorThe cursor that appears when the mouse is over the choices, but only when the menu has been torn off.
disabledforeground The color of the text for items whose state is DISABLED.
font The default font for textual choices.
fg The foreground color used for choices not under the mouse.
postcommandYou can set this option to a procedure, and that procedure will be called every time someone brings up this menu.
reliefThe default 3-D effect for menus is relief=RAISED.
imageTo display an image on this menubutton.
selectcolorSpecifies the color displayed in checkbuttons and radiobuttons when they are selected.
tearoffNormally, a menu can be torn off, the first position (position 0) in the list of choices is occupied by the tear-off element, and the additional choices are added starting at position 1. If you set tearoff=0, the menu will not have a tear-off feature, and choices will be added starting at position 0.
titleNormally, the title of a tear-off menu window will be the same as the text of the menubutton or cascade that lead to this menu. If you want to change the title of that window, set the title option to that string.


These methods are available on Menu objects:

add_command (options)Adds a menu item to the menu.
add_radiobutton( options )Creates a radio button menu item.
add_checkbutton( options )Creates a check button menu item.
add_cascade(options)Creates a new hierarchical menu by associating a given menu to a parent menu
add_separator()Adds a separator line to the menu.
add( type, options )Adds a specific type of menu item to the menu.
delete( startindex [, endindex ])Deletes the menu items ranging from startindex to endindex.
entryconfig( index, options )Allows you to modify a menu item, which is identified by the index, and change its options.
index(item)Returns the index number of the given menu item label.
insert_separator ( index )Insert a new separator at the position specified by index.
invoke ( index )Calls the command callback associated with the choice at position index. If a checkbutton, its state is toggled between set and cleared; if a radiobutton, that choice is set.
type ( index )Returns the type of the choice specified by index: either "cascade", "checkbutton", "command", "radiobutton", "separator", or "tearoff".


Try the following example yourself:

from Tkinter import *
def donothing():
   filewin = Toplevel(root)
   button = Button(filewin, text="Do nothing button")
root = Tk()
menubar = Menu(root)
filemenu = Menu(menubar, tearoff=0)
filemenu.add_command(label="New", command=donothing)
filemenu.add_command(label="Open", command=donothing)
filemenu.add_command(label="Save", command=donothing)
filemenu.add_command(label="Save as...", command=donothing)
filemenu.add_command(label="Close", command=donothing)


filemenu.add_command(label="Exit", command=root.quit)
menubar.add_cascade(label="File", menu=filemenu)
editmenu = Menu(menubar, tearoff=0)
editmenu.add_command(label="Undo", command=donothing)


editmenu.add_command(label="Cut", command=donothing)
editmenu.add_command(label="Copy", command=donothing)
editmenu.add_command(label="Paste", command=donothing)
editmenu.add_command(label="Delete", command=donothing)
editmenu.add_command(label="Select All", command=donothing)

menubar.add_cascade(label="Edit", menu=editmenu)
helpmenu = Menu(menubar, tearoff=0)
helpmenu.add_command(label="Help Index", command=donothing)
helpmenu.add_command(label="About...", command=donothing)
menubar.add_cascade(label="Help", menu=helpmenu)


When the above code is executed, it produces the following result:

TK Menu