Dockerize Your FastAPI and Celery Application

May 9, 2024 5 min read
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A while ago I wrote a tutorial about how to use Celery with FastAPI to run asynchronous tasks. In this post, I will explain how to dockerize the application and simplify the deployment with Docker Compose.

Make sure you already have Docker installed on your system.

The source code to deploy

To recap, here is the source code from my previous FastAPI and Celery tutorial. We have three files:

The contents of requirements.txt:


The contents of

from fastapi import FastAPI
from .tasks import celery, square_root

app = FastAPI()'/square_root')
def process(num: float):
  task = square_root.delay(num)
  return {'taskId':}

def status(task_id: str):
    task = celery.AsyncResult(task_id)
    if task.ready():
        return {'status': 'DONE', 'result': task.get()}
        return {'status': 'IN_PROGRESS'}

The contents of

import math
import time
import os

from celery import Celery

REDIS_HOST = os.getenv('REDIS_HOST', 'localhost')
REDIS_PORT = os.getenv('REDIS_PORT', 6379)

celery = Celery(

def square_root(num: float):
    return math.sqrt(num)

In short, this simple application provides two endpoints:

When you make POST request to /square_root, it will return a task ID and run the background task to do the calculation. The background task simply use delay to simulate long-running code.

To check the status of the task, make a GET request to /status/<task_id>.

Writing the Dockerfile

In this scenario, we only need one Dockerfile for both the API and the worker code. Create a new file named Dockerfile and put the following content:

FROM python:3.12-slim


COPY . .

RUN pip install --no-cache-dir -r requirements.txt

Let’s break down the contents of the Dockerfile step by step:

  1. FROM python:3.12-slim This line specifies the base image for the Docker image. In this case, it uses the Python 3.12-slim image as the base, which is a lightweight version of Python.

  2. WORKDIR /app This line sets the working directory inside the container to /app. It means that all subsequent commands will be executed in this directory.

  3. COPY . . This line copies the entire contents of the current directory (where the Dockerfile resides) to the /app directory inside the container. It includes your application code and any other necessary files.

  4. RUN pip install --no-cache-dir -r requirements.txt This line installs the dependencies specified in the requirements.txt file. The --no-cache-dir flag ensures that pip doesn’t cache the downloaded packages, reducing the size of the final Docker image.

Writing the Docker Compose file

The Docker Compose file allows you to define and manage the services required for your application in a single configuration file. By using Docker Compose commands, you can easily build and run the entire application stack with just one command.

Create a new file named docker-compose.yml and put the following contents:


      context: .
      dockerfile: Dockerfile
      - 8000:8000
      - worker
      - REDIS_HOST=redis
      - REDIS_PORT=6379
    command: uvicorn main:app --host --port 8000 

      context: .
      dockerfile: Dockerfile
      - redis
      - REDIS_HOST=redis
      - REDIS_PORT=6379
    command: celery -A tasks worker --loglevel=info

    image: redis:latest

Let’s briefly summarize the file.

The api service is responsible for running the FastAPI application. It depends on the worker service, which means it will only start after worker is running. The environment variables REDIS_HOST and REDIS_PORT are set to connect to the Redis service.

The worker service is responsible for running the Celery worker. It depends on the redis service and sets the REDIS_HOST and REDIS_PORT environment variables to connect to Redis.

The redis service uses the redis:latest image to run a Redis server. It provides the message broker for the Celery worker and the API.

Run the application

Now that everything is in place, you can run the application by using this command:

docker compose up
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