Strikethrough (a.k.a strikeout) is a horizontal line drawn through the center of the text, often used to indicate a revision or edit or the deletion of an error. Strikethrough formatting is represented by words with a horizontal line through their center, which could show tasks have been completed or that the text is wrong and irrelevant.

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

If you want to quickly strikethrough text in Excel, 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: Ctrl+5 and the data inside the cell will be crossed out.

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

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

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

Strikethrough Text Using Format Cell Options

Another easy method that you can use to strike out data in Excel is by using the Format Cells feature.

Select the cells that you want to strikethrough and then right-click, and choose the ‘Format Cells’ option (or press Ctrl + 1 to open Format cells dialog).

Or you can also 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.

Once the Format Cells dialog box is opened up, on the ‘Font’ tab, 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. You can also format font, number, borders, alignment, etc., using this dialog box.

Add a Strikethrough Button to Quick Access Toolbar

Strikethrough button or option is not available in Excel by default. However, we can add a strikethrough button to the Quick Access Toolbar and access it with a single mouse click whenever you deemed it necessary. Follow these steps to add a strikethrough button 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 the ‘Customize Quick Access Toolbar’ option from the drop-down.

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

Next, select ‘Strikethrough’ in the list of commands and click on the ‘Add’ button. Doing this will add ‘Strikethrough’ to the list of commands on the right panel and that means the button is added to the Quick Access Toolbar. Click ‘OK’ to save the changes and close the dialog box.

You can also use the up and down arrow buttons on the right side of QAT commands to change the position of the ‘Strikethrough’ button on the QAT toolbar.

Now you’ll notice the strikethrough button added to the upper left corner of your Excel window as shown in the below Screenshot. Select the data which you want to strikethrough and click the newly added ‘Strikethrough’ button and the text will be immediately strike out.

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 and click the ‘New Group’ button. Since its strikethrough is a formatting option, we are going to add the new button on the ‘Home’ tab, so choose ‘Home’ in this case. 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 group you just created. In the Rename dialog enter the new name (in our case ‘My Formats’ 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 of the Main Tabs panel, change the position of your custom group with the ‘Strikethrough’ button on the ribbon.

After that, you’ll see the ‘Strikethrough’ button in the ‘Home’ tab of your Excel ribbon. You can now select the cell and click the ‘Strikethrough’ button on the ‘Home’ tab to cross out that cell.

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, switch to the ‘Home’ tab, click the ‘Conditional Formatting’ in the ‘Styles’ group, and from the drop-down choose ‘New Rule’ option.

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

Now, this formatting rule is applied to cell B2. To copy the formula to other cells, use a 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, select a cell (or cells) that is crossed out, then follow one of the above methods to undo it.