The require-jsx plugin just performs the compilation when a module is loaded.
The other option, as I hinted at, is to precompile your JSX. This offloads the JSX transformation and allows Require’s optimizer to minify your entire client. React has a set of complementary tools, aptly named react-tools, which includes a command-line utility for performing this compilation.
The jsx tool can also watch directories, doing the compilation whenever the source changes, with the `–watch` option.
You can use whatever build tool you want to tie all these things together. I personally prefer Make because it’s simple and ubiquitous.
Running `make js` will install my Bower dependencies, perform JSX compilation, and then minify the client. This workflow works well and makes it easy to setup different build steps, such as pip installing Python requirements, running integration and unit tests, and performing deploys.