The Google Sheets logo.

Google Sheets makes it easy to add and remove items from the existing drop-down menus in your spreadsheets. You can also change your drop-down settings, and even completely remove them if you want. Here’s how to do that.

Sheets lets you selectively make changes to your drop-downs. This way, you can select a drop-down and make changes to it, while keeping all other drop-downs as is.

RELATED: How to Create a Drop-Down List in Google Sheets

Add or Remove Items From the Drop-Down Menus in Google Sheets

To tweak the drop-down list items in your spreadsheets, first, launch a web browser on your computer and open Google Sheets. Then access the spreadsheet in which your drop-down lists are located.

On your spreadsheet screen, select the cells containing drop-down items that you want to tweak.

Select drop-down lists.

While your drop-down menus are selected, in Google Sheets’ menu bar, click Data > Data Validation.

Select Data > Data Validation from the menu bar.

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A “Data Validation” window will open where you’ll customize your drop-down list items.

The "Data Validation" window.

On this window, the “Criteria” menu defines the kind of items your drop-down menus have. To add or remove items, then use the box next to this menu.

You can add a new list item by typing a comma and then entering your item name. Or, you can remove an item by clearing it in the list. Feel free to change any other options you want on this window.

When you’re done, at the bottom of the “Data Validation” window, click “Save.”

Your spreadsheet will now display the updated items in your drop-down lists.

You’re probably wondering what happens to the cells where you’ve selected a list item that’s no longer available. In those cells, Sheets displays a warning message saying the entered item is invalid. You’ll want to select a new valid item from the drop-down list in these cells.

Invalid drop-down entries.

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If you’d like to remove a drop-down list from a cell, select that cell and choose Data > Data Validation in the menu bar. Then, on the “Data Validation” window, click “Remove Validation.”

Choose "Remove Validation."

Your drop-down list is now removed, but the values you selected previously are still there for you to use.

Drop-down list items removed.

And that’s how you edit your drop-down lists in Google Sheets to add new items as well as remove existing ones. Very useful!


You can edit existing drop-down menus in Microsoft Excel, too.

RELATED: How to Edit a Drop-Down List in Microsoft Excel

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Mahesh Makvana is a freelance tech writer who specializes in writing how-to guides. He has been writing tech tutorials for over a decade now. He’s written for some of the prominent tech sites including MakeUseOf, MakeTechEasier, and Online Tech Tips.
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