Call API Gateway with Step Functions - Amazon Step Functions
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Call API Gateway with Step Functions

Step Functions can control certain Amazon services directly from Amazon States Language (ASL). To learn more, see Working with other services and Pass parameters to a service API.

How the Optimized API Gateway integration is different than the API Gateway Amazon SDK integration
  • apigateway:invoke: has no equivalent in the Amazon SDK service integration. Instead, the Optimized API Gateway service calls your API Gateway endpoint directly.

You use Amazon API Gateway to create, publish, maintain, and monitor HTTP and REST APIs. To integrate with API Gateway, you define a Task state in Step Functions that directly calls an API Gateway HTTP or API Gateway REST endpoint, without writing code or relying on other infrastructure. A Task state definition includes all the necessary information for the API call. You can also select different authorization methods.


Step Functions supports the ability to call HTTP endpoints through API Gateway, but does not currently support the ability to call generic HTTP endpoints.

API Gateway feature support

The Step Functions API Gateway integration supports some, but not all API Gateway features. For a more detailed list of supported features, see the following.

  • Supported by both the Step Functions API Gateway REST API and API Gateway HTTP API integrations:

    • Authorizers: IAM (using Signature Version 4), No Auth, Lambda Authorizers (request-parameter based and token-based with custom header)

    • API types: Regional

    • API management: API Gateway API domain names, API stage, Path, Query Parameters, Request Body

  • Supported by the Step Functions API Gateway HTTP API integration. The Step Functions API Gateway REST API integration that provides the option for Edge-optimized APIs are not supported.

  • Unsupported by the Step Functions API Gateway integration:

    • Authorizers: Amazon Cognito, Native Open ID Connect / OAuth 2.0, Authorization header for token-based Lambda authorizers

    • API types: Private

    • API management: Custom domain names

For more information about API Gateway and its HTTP and REST APIs, see the following.

Request format

When you create your Task state definition, Step Functions validates the parameters, builds the necessary URL to perform the call, then calls the API. The response includes the HTTP status code, headers and response body. The request format has both required and optional parameters.

Required request parameters

  • ApiEndpoint

    • Type: String

    • The hostname of an API Gateway URL. The format is <API ID>.execute-api.<region>

      The API ID can only contain a combination of the following alphanumeric characters: 0123456789abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz

  • Method

    • Type: Enum

    • The HTTP method, which must be one of the following:

      • GET

      • POST

      • PUT

      • DELETE

      • PATCH

      • HEAD

      • OPTIONS

Optional request parameters

  • Headers

    • Type: JSON

    • HTTP headers allow a list of values associated with the same key.

  • Stage

    • Type: String

    • The name of the stage where the API is deployed to in API Gateway. It's optional for any HTTP API that uses the $default stage.

  • Path

    • Type: String

    • Path parameters that are appended after the API endpoint.

  • QueryParameters

    • Type: JSON

    • Query strings only allow a list of values associated with the same key.

  • RequestBody

    • Type: JSON or String

    • The HTTP Request body. Its type can be either a JSON object or String. RequestBody is only supported for PATCH, POST, and PUT HTTP methods.

  • AllowNullValues

    • Type: BOOLEAN – default value: false

    • With the default setting, any null values in the request input state will not be sent to your API. In the following example, the category field will not be included in the request, unless AllowNullValues is set to true in your state machine definition.

      { "NewPet": { "type": "turtle", "price": 123, "category": null } }

      By default, fields with null values in the request input state will not be sent to your API. You can force null values to be sent to your API by setting AllowNullValues to true in your state machine definition.

  • AuthType

    • Type: JSON

    • The authentication method. The default method is NO_AUTH. The allowed values are:

      • NO_AUTH

      • IAM_ROLE


      See Authentication and authorization for more information.


For security considerations, the following HTTP header keys are not currently permitted:

  • Anything prefixed with X-Forwarded, X-Amz or X-Amzn.

  • Authorization

  • Connection

  • Content-md5

  • Expect

  • Host

  • Max-Forwards

  • Proxy-Authenticate

  • Server

  • TE

  • Transfer-Encoding

  • Trailer

  • Upgrade

  • Via

  • Www-Authenticate

The following code example shows how to invoke API Gateway using Step Functions.

{ "Type": "Task", "Resource":"arn:aws:states:::apigateway:invoke", "Parameters": { "ApiEndpoint": "", "Method": "GET", "Headers": { "key": ["value1", "value2"] }, "Stage": "prod", "Path": "bills", "QueryParameters": { "billId": ["123456"] }, "RequestBody": {}, "AuthType": "NO_AUTH" } }

Authentication and authorization

You can use the following authentication methods:

  • No authorization: Call the API directly with no authorization method.

  • IAM role: With this method, Step Functions assumes the role of the state machine, signs the request with Signature Version 4 (SigV4), then calls the API.

  • Resource policy: Step Functions authenticates the request, and then calls the API. You must attach a resource policy to the API which specifies the following:

    1. The state machine that will invoke API Gateway.


      You must specify your state machine to limit access to it. If you do not, then any state machine that authenticates its API Gateway request with Resource policy authentication to your API will be granted access.

    2. That Step Functions is the service calling API Gateway: "Service": "".

    3. The resource you want to access, including:

      • The region.

      • The account-id in the specified region.

      • The api-id.

      • The stage-name.

      • The HTTP-VERB (method).

      • The resource-path-specifier.

    For an example resource policy, see IAM policies for Step Functions and API Gateway.

    For more information on the resource format, see Resource format of permissions for executing API in API Gateway in the API Gateway Developer Guide.


    Resource policies are only supported for the REST API.

Service integration patterns

The API Gateway integration supports two service integration patterns:

  • Request Response, which is the default integration pattern. It lets Step Functions progress to the next step immediately after it receives an HTTP response.

  • Wait for a Callback with the Task Token (.waitForTaskToken), which waits until a task token is returned with a payload. To use the .waitForTaskToken pattern, append .waitForTaskToken to the end of the Resource field of your task definition as shown in the following example:

    { "Type": "Task", "Resource":"arn:aws:states:::apigateway:invoke.waitForTaskToken", "Parameters": { "ApiEndpoint": "", "Method": "POST", "Headers": { "TaskToken.$": "States.Array($$.Task.Token)" }, "Stage": "prod", "Path": "bills/add", "QueryParameters": {}, "RequestBody": { "billId": "my-new-bill" }, "AuthType": "IAM_ROLE" } }

Output format

The following output parameters are provided:

Name Type Description
ResponseBody JSON or String The response body of the API call.
Headers JSON The response headers.
StatusCode Integer The HTTP status code of the response.
StatusText String The status text of the response.

An example response:

{ "ResponseBody": { "myBills": [] }, "Headers": { "key": ["value1", "value2"] }, "StatusCode": 200, "StatusText": "OK" }

Error handling

When an error occurs, an error and cause is returned as follows:

  • If the HTTP status code is available, then the error will be returned in the format ApiGateway.<HTTP Status Code>.

  • If the HTTP status code is not available, then the error will be returned in the format ApiGateway.<Exception>.

In both cases, the cause is returned as a string.

The following example shows a response where an error has occurred:

{ "error": "ApiGateway.403", "cause": "{\"message\":\"Missing Authentication Token\"}" }

A status code of 2XX indicates success, and no error will be returned. All other status codes or thrown exceptions will result in an error.

For more information see:

Amazon API Gateway concepts in the API Gateway Developer Guide.