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6 Best NotePad For Mac Alternatives (inc. M1 & M2 Macs)

NotePad for Mac does not exist but if you’ve just switched to Mac from PC we’ve looked at the best NotePad alternatives for Mac.

Firstly, although Windows NotePad doesn’t exist for Mac, you can install NotePad on a Mac by running Windows on a Mac.

The best way to run Windows on a Mac is using Parallels which allows you to run macOS and Windows side-by-side so you can switch between then whenever you want.

Parallels also works on the latest Apple Silicon M1 and M2 chip Macs as well.

If you don’t want to run NotePad on your Mac however, here we’ve looked at the best NotePad for Mac alternatives.

We’ve tried to focus on basic NotePad text editors here and avoided dedicated HTML editors for programmers such as NotePad++.

The apps here are in the order of free to paid options – there’s really no need to pay for a simple text editing app on Mac unless you need special formatting features or if you are programmer writing HTML.

All of them work on the latest M1 and M2 Macs too thanks to Rosetta which translates Intel only apps to work on Apple Silicon Macs.

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Here then is our list of the best alternatives to NotePad for Mac in order of ranking.

1. TextEdit

notepad for mac - textedit

The most obvious choice for those looking for a replacement for NotePad on Mac is TextEdit which is the default text editing app for Mac.

It’s free with any version of macOS but is very basic and there are other free and paid options out there with a few more advanced features.

TextEdit is the Mac equivalent of NotePad and is free with all versions of macOS. To find it, simply search for TextEdit in Spotlight or CMD click on your desktop and select “TextEdit”.

TextEdit is useful mainly as a simple text editing tool but you can even edit HTML in it. To open TextEdit in HTML mode, simply select “Ignore rich text commands in HTML files” from the File Menu.

Alternatively, to open in Plain Text by default just ensure that “Plain Text” is selected from the Format menu.

2. BBEdit

bbedit mac

BBEdit (formerly known as TextWrangler) is a very popular text editing tool and an excellent alternative to Notepad on Mac.

BBEdit is an advanced HTML editor although can be used for basic note taking. It can be used for checking prefs, html or xml files of all types.

BBEdit works natively on M1 and M2 Macs so performance is optimized for those Macs.

There is an advanced version of BBEdit which offers more coding tools although this isn’t free and requires you to purchase a license starting at $49.99.

3. Tincta

tincta html editor mac

Tincta is a very simple text editor for Mac. Excellent for taking notes or making lists, it can also be used for basic HTML coding.

Tincta works natively on M1 and M2 Macs so performance is optimized for those Macs.

The most unique thing about Tincta is it’s terms and conditions which actually request you to take steps to reduce global warming in order to use it!

4. NotePad

notepad for mac - notepad

Although NotePad isn’t free (not to be confused with NotePad for Mac below or the original NotePad on Windows), NotePad TXT Editor is just t $1.99 from the app store and is suitable for simple documents or notes without any formatting.

You can also open and edit Windows .TXT files with it.

5. iNotePad

notepad for mac alternatives - inotepad

iNotePad for Mac is a slicker, more powerful solution which allows you to cut and paste snippets and drag text from other applications into it.

It has various other useful features such as a Recents List and the ability to change fonts and text color. You can also protect notes with a password.

6. SubEthaEdit


SubEthaEdit is a more powerful alternative to NotePad that’s fine for just taking notes but also offers the possibility to edit HTML too.

One feature that’s a bit different with SubEthaEdit is the ability to collaborate on documents with other users over the web. SubEthaEdit also has a very slick interface for a note taking app that’s even won it an Apple Design award.

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2 Responses

    • MacHow2

      Charlie, Sublime Text wasn’t included in this article because it’s more heavily focused on coding than writing. Most people that want an alternative to NotePad on Mac want it for note taking and writing rather than programming. Also, Sublime Text 2 costs $70 which, for those that just want a simple note taking app, is quite expensive.


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