The new Notes app is great but How do I create a new note without switching to the Notes app first?

Same goes for Reminders.app.

4 Answers 4



You can create a service using the Automator:

  1. Open Automator.app
  2. Select Service
  3. For Reminders: Add action Ask for Text to prompt for a new To Do
  4. Add action New Reminders Item
  5. Save Service
  6. Create Shortcut in:

    System Preferences → Keyboard → Keyboard Shortcuts → Services → Text

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See Mohamad Elwan's answer for notes

  • Does this still work for you ?
    – yunas
    Aug 25, 2017 at 23:12

For Notes,

Launch Automator --> Service

Add the action "Run AppleScript"

Replace (* Your script goes here *) with:

tell application "Notes" to activate
tell application "System Events"
    click menu item "Notes" of ((process "Notes")'s (menu bar 1)'s ¬
        (menu bar item "Window")'s (menu "Window"))
    click menu item "New Note" of ((process "Notes")'s (menu bar 1)'s ¬
        (menu bar item "File")'s (menu "File"))
end tell

This will work regardless if the Notes app is minimized or hidden.

Then, follow the above procedure to create the global shortcut.

Hope this helps :)

  • It works great! Bear in mind that the menu items must be localized according to the language of your system, i.e., replace "Window", "New Note", and "File" by the corresponding names in your language. I didn't need to change "System Events" and "Notes" (my system is in French).
    – Victor
    Apr 13, 2020 at 17:48
tell application "Notes"
end tell
tell application "System Events"
    tell application process "Notes"
        click menu item "New note" of menu "File" of menu bar item "File" of menu bar 1         
    end tell
end tell
  • 3
    It would be useful if explain what the script is doing. It helps people learn/understand how these things work.
    – Allan
    Jul 26, 2018 at 13:23

As of macOS 12 Monterey, there is a default shortcut for creating a Quick Note from anywhere: Fn Q.

You can change this shortcut in System Settings. (in macOS Ventura and up, the setting is in System Settings > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts… > Mission Control > Quick Note).

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