In most cases when I copy text from a source document or website and want to paste this text in Microsoft Office Outlook or Microsoft Office Word, I want the text to be formatted like the destination document (pasting as unformatted text). Previously I used two methods to accomplish this:

  • Paste > Paste Special > Unformatted Text > OK ( 4 clicks)
  • Notepad ctrl+a then ctrl+v the ctrl+a and then ctrl+c (1 click but many key presses)

Paste special dialog


In Microsoft Office 2010 (and perhaps in older Microsoft Office versions) you can now set default paste options to unformatted text. The pasted text will be formatted like the destination document

In Microsoft Office Word 2010

  • File > Options > Advanced > [Cut, copy and paste] section > Keep Text Only


In Microsoft Office Outlook 2010

  • Open a new mail message
  • File > Options > Mail > Editor Options > Advanced > [Cut, copy and paste] section > Keep Text Only


When you paste text in you’re mail or word document, it will be formatted like the mail or document.


Microsoft Office 2010 OneNote

  • In Microsoft Office 2010 OneNote, you can use the [Contenxt Menu Key] + T, instead of [CTRL + V] to paste unformatted text.
  • Or use alt + h + v + t

7 Replies to “Short cut for pasting unformatted text, with the default paste options in Microsoft Office 2010”

  1. Or you can use ctrl+alt+v which brings up the “paste special dialog” then click the paste you want. result: 1 keypress + 1 click. 🙂

  2. What about for Excel 2010? Microsoft didn’t think about that one did the?

  3. As JB notes, ‘paste special’ doesn’t exist as such in OneNote 2010, and (so) ctrl+alt+v doesn’t do anything in that app. Too bad they couldn’t retain consistency w other Office apps in this respect, but at least they *did* provide “Paste and Keep Text Only” (see details above, or do as I did and add it to the Quick Access toolbar (I use it every day multiple times a day)).

  4. I am so confused. I’m using MS Office 2010, and have all my defaults set to Keep Text Only, but it doesn’t work. Daily, I copy and paste headlines and hyperlinks to news stories into an e-mail for my boss, and I still have to right click and select Keep Text Only every time I paste a headline. What’s going on? I’m composing in HTML format, and can’t use plain text because it screws up my hyperlinks. Thanks so much for your help!

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