How to Strikethrough in Excel


Strikethrough is a horizontal line drawn through the center of the text, used to indicate that the text is no longer valid or the deletion of an error. Strikethrough formatting in Excel puts a line through the middle of cell contents, which could show tasks have been completed or to symbolize that the cell contents are no longer relevant.

Although Excel doesn’t provide us any direct Strikethrough option on the ribbon, you can still access the strikethrough effect by using any of the five methods described in this tutorial.

Strikethrough in Excel Using Shortcut Key

Let’s say you’re in hurry and don’t want to waste your time, then a shortcut key is best the option for you. 

Here’s the keyboard shortcut to apply the strikethrough in Excel: Ctrl + 5

Now suppose we have the below to-do list for which we need the strikethrough format.

To apply the strikethrough format, first select the cell or cells that you need to strikethrough. Once the cells are selected, then press the keyboard shortcut key that is Ctrl+5, and the data inside the cell will strikeout.

Note: Do this using the number along the top of your keyboard. This shortcut won’t with the number pad.

If you want to cross out a particular part of the cell value, then double-click the cell to enter the Edit mode, and select that part of the text, after that press the shortcut key (Ctrl+5).

To strikethrough, more than one cell, select the entire range or select the non-continues range of cells while holding the Ctrl key, and then press the strikethrough shortcut.

Strikethrough Text Using Format Cell Options

Another quick way to cross out a cell value in Excel is by using the Format Cells dialog box.

Select the cells where you want to apply the strikethrough format and then right-click, and choose ‘Format Cells’ from the context menu (or press Ctrl + 1 to open Format cells dialog).

Or you can click on the small arrow on the bottom-right corner of the Font section in the Home tab to open the Format Cells dialog box.

In the Format Cells dialog box, go to the ‘Font’ tab, and check the ‘Strikethrough’ option under the Effects section. Then, click ‘OK’ to save the change and close the dialog box.

Now you can see the result as shown in the below:

This method also gives access to many other formatting options in a single place. For example, you can also change font color, font type, font size, alignment, number format, etc., using this dialog box.

Add a Strikethrough Button to Quick Access Toolbar

Strikethrough button or option is not available in the Excel ribbon and in the Quick Access Toolbar (QAT) by default. So we can add a strikethrough button to the Quick Access Toolbar to always have it at your fingertips. Follow these steps to add a strikethrough icon in the QAT.

To add the strikethrough button to the QAT, click the small downward arrow in the upper left corner of the Excel window, and then click ‘More Commands…’ from the drop-down.

Alternatively, right-click anywhere on the ribbon and choose ‘Customize Quick Access Toolbar’ from the pop-up menu.

The Excel Options dialog box appears. From the ‘Choose commands from’ drop-down list, select ‘Commands Not in the Ribbon’ or ‘All Commands’.

Then, select ‘Strikethrough’ in the list of commands and click on the ‘Add’ button. This will add ‘Strikethrough’ to the list of commands on the right panel. Now the button is added to the Quick Access Toolbar. Click ‘OK’ to save the change and close the dialog box.

The up and down arrow buttons on the right side QAT commands can be used to change the position of the ‘Strikethrough’ button.

Now you’ll see the strikethrough button at the upper left corner of your worksheet again. Select the data which you want to strikethrough and click the ‘Strikethrough’ button, as shown in the below Screenshot.

Add a Strikethrough Button to the Ribbon

Since the strikethrough option is not available on the Excel ribbon by default, you can add a Strikethrough option/button on the ribbon with a few clicks. As with QAT, you only need to set it up once, then you can easily access the strikethrough command whenever you need it from the ribbon. Here’s how you do this:

First, right-click anywhere on the ribbon and select the ‘Customize the Ribbon…’ option from the pop-up menu.

It will open up the Excel Options window. Here, to create a new button, you need to first create a new custom group. New buttons cannot be added to the pre-existing group, they can be only added to the custom groups. So to create a new button, select the target tab (Home in our case) and click the ‘New Group’ button. This will add a custom group at the end of the ribbon in the Home tab. 

Then, click the ‘Rename’ button next to the New Group button to name the newly created group to your liking, like ‘My Formats’. In the Rename dialog enter the new name (My Formats) in the ‘Display name’ field and click ‘OK’.

Now with the new group selected, add a strikethrough command as we did for Quick Access Toolbar. From the ‘Choose commands from’ drop-down list, select ‘Commands Not in the Ribbon’, scroll-down, and choose ‘Strikethrough’ in the list of commands. Then, click the ‘Add’ to add the Strikethrough button to the ‘My Formats’ group.

Once the ‘Strikethrough’ button added to the My Formats group, click ‘OK’ to save the changes and close the dialog box.

Since strikethrough is a font formatting command, we want this group next to the Font group in the Home tab. By using the up and down arrow buttons on the right side, change the position of your custom group with the ‘Strikethrough’ button on the ribbon.

After that, you’ll see the ‘Strikethrough’ button on your Excel ribbon. You can now select the data and cross out text in Excel with a single button click as shown below.

Apply Strikethrough using Conditional Formatting

Suppose you have a to-do list or activities or task list you need to accomplish. You can use conditional formatting to cross out (strikethrough) the completed tasks.

Let’s assume we have this list of shows and movies to watch in column A and when we update the status for the show as ‘Watched’, Excel will automatically format the adjacent cell with Strikethrough.

To do this, first select the cell range you want to format. Then, go to the ‘Home’ tab, from the ‘Styles’ group select ‘Conditional Formatting’, from that choose ‘New Rule’ from the drop-down list.

In the New Formatting Rule dialog box, select ‘Use a formula to determine which cells to format’ and write the below Formula in the ’Format values where this formula is true box’:


Then, click on ‘Format’ to set the formatting.

In the Format Cells dialog box, switch to the ‘Font’ tab, and check the ‘Strikethrough’ option under the Effects section. Then, click ‘OK’ to save the change and click ‘OK’ one more time to close the dialog box.

Now, this formatting rule is applied to cell B2. To copy the formula to other cells, use fill handle to apply the formula to the cell range (B2:B9).

Now, whenever we update the status as ‘Watched’, Excel will automatically strike out the text as shown below.

To remove the strikethrough effect, select a cell (or cells), then repeat the process.