How to Right Click on a Mac

  Matt Cone       August 30, 2021      Tutorials Mac Hardware


Think you can’t right click while using a Mac? Let’s dispel that common rumor right away: You can right click on a Mac! Don’t let the single trackpad and mouse button fool you. Both the MacBook trackpad and Apple mouse can be configured to right click. In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to right click on a Mac.

What Right Clicking on a Mac Does

If you have a Mac and you haven’t been right clicking, you’ve been missing out on a lot of cool functionality. There are loads of options in the “contextual menus” — menus that appear when you right click - that you just can’t find anywhere else. Here are some examples:

Using a Keyboard Shortcut

One of the easiest ways to right click is to hold down the Control key before you click your mouse button or tap your trackpad. This works on any Mac!

Right click keyboard shortcut for Mac

Configuring Right Click Settings for Your Mac’s Trackpad

Your MacBook’s trackpad can be configured to detect and respond to right clicks. Here’s how to enable to enable right click for your Mac’s trackpad:

  1. From the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Click Trackpad, as shown below.

    Right click on Mac trackpad

  3. Select the Secondary click checkbox, as shown below. You can choose how to invoke right click on your Mac. The default is tapping or clicking with two fingers on the trackpad.

    Right click on Mac trackpad

You’ve successfully configured your Mac’s trackpad for right click! Now when you tap or click on the trackpad with two fingers, you’ll invoke the contextual menu.

Configuring Right Click Setting for Your Mac’s Mouse

An Apple mouse can be configured to detect and respond to right clicks. Here’s how to enable to enable right click for your Mac’s mouse:

  1. From the Apple menu, select System Preferences.

  2. Click Mouse, as shown below.

    Right click on Mac mouse

  3. Select the Secondary click checkbox, as shown below. You can choose how to invoke right click on your Mac’s mouse. The default is clicking on the right side of the mouse.

    Right click on Mac mouse

You’ve successfully configured your Mac’s mouse for right click! Now when you click on the right side of the mouse, you’ll invoke the contextual menu.

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© 2021. A Matt Cone project. CC BY-NC-SA 4.0. Made with 🌶️ in New Mexico.