How to Save a Document as .txt File in TextEdit on Mac

TextEdit, the default text editor on Mac, is a powerful tool that allows you to create and edit a variety of file types. While it’s often used for rich text documents, you can also use it to save files in plain text (.txt) format. Here’s how you can do that.

How to Open and Create a Document in TextEdit

First, let’s go over how to open TextEdit and create a new document:

  • Navigate to the Finder, select ‘Applications’ from the sidebar, and then locate and open TextEdit. Alternatively, use spotlight by pressing command + space and then type in TextEdit.
  • Once TextEdit is open, you can create a new document by selecting ‘File’ from the menu bar at the top of your screen, and then clicking ‘New’. Alternatively, you can use the keyboard shortcut Command+N.
Mac TextEdit Txt File

How to Switch to Plain Text Mode

Before you can save your document as a .txt file, you’ll need to switch TextEdit into plain text mode. Here’s how:

  • With your document open in TextEdit, go to the menu bar and click on Format.
  • From the drop-down menu, select Make Plain Text. You can also use the keyboard shortcut Shift+Command+T.
make plain text textedit mac

Please note that switching to plain text mode will remove any rich text formatting from your document, such as bold or italic text, images, and links.

How to Save the Document as a .txt File

After switching to plain text mode, you can now save your document as a .txt file:

  • Click on File in the menu bar, then select Save or use the keyboard shortcut Command+S.
  • In the save dialog box, enter your preferred file name.
  • Make sure the If no extension is provided, use the “.txt” checkbox is checked. If you don’t see this checkbox, click on the arrow next to the file name field to expand the dialog box.
  • Choose your desired location to save the file and click Save.
txt file on mac textedit

Now, your document is saved as a .txt file!

Remember, TextEdit will remember your last used settings. So, if you create a new document after saving a .txt file, the new document will also be in plain text mode. To switch back to rich text mode, just go to Format in the menu bar and select Make Rich Text, or use the keyboard shortcut Shift+Command+T.

Using TextEdit to create and save .txt files is a simple and effective way to manage plain text documents on your Mac. Whether you’re drafting code, writing notes, or creating data for import into other programs, TextEdit has you covered.

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