How to Save and Use Messages as Templates in Apple Mail

A handy email template trick for Mac users

You don't need to reinvent a standard email every time you send one out. Although Apple Mail does not have a dedicated feature for creating and maintaining message templates, you can use drafts and some repurposing of other commands to keep your email at its most efficient.

Instructions in this article apply to Mac OS X Lion (10.7) and later.

Baking with love concept
Make as many as you fancy with rolling pin, love and macOS Mail. StockUnlimited

How to Save Emails as Templates in Apple Mail

To save a message as a template in Apple Mail:

  1. Open the Mail application on your Mac.

  2. Click Mailbox in the menu bar and select New Mailbox from the menu that appears. 

    new mailbox
  3. Select a Location for the mailbox and type "Template" into the Name field. Click OK to create the mailbox.

    You can name the new inbox whatever you want.

    name the new mailbox
  4. Create a new message by clicking the New Message button, selecting New Message from the File menu, or pressing Command+N on your keyboard.

  5. Edit the message to contain anything you want in the template. You can edit and save the subject and the message contents, along with the recipients and the message priority. As you work, Apple Mail saves your message in the Drafts mailbox.

  6. Close the message window and select Save if you receive a prompt.

    save message draft
  7. Open the Drafts mailbox.

    drafts folder
  8. Move the message you just saved from the Drafts mailbox to the Template mailbox by clicking on it and dragging to the destination. The Template folder may appear under the On My Mac folder group.

    Template mailbox

You can also use any message you previously sent as a template by copying it to your Template mailbox. To edit a template, create a new message using it, make the desired changes, and then save the edited message as a template while deleting the old template.

How to Use an Email Template in Apple Mail

To use a message template in Apple Mail to create a new message:

  1. Open the Template mailbox containing the desired message template.

    template folder
  2. Highlight the template you want to use for the new message.

  3. Select Send Again from the Message menu to open the template in a new window.

    The keyboard shortcut is Command+Shift+D.

    send again
  4. Edit and send the message.