A Definitive Guide on How to Recall an Email

Suryanarayan Pal
BySuryanarayan Pal

4 mins read

All of us have sent emails with typos, forgotten attachments, or wrong recipients’ addresses at some point or another.

Fortunately, there is a technique to deal with such scenarios. It’s called recalling an email.

This guide will teach you what email recalling is, how it works, and strategies to prevent the need to recall an email.

  • What does it mean to recall an email?

  • Limitations that you might face while recalling an email

  • Steps to recall emails in Gmail and Outlook

  • How to prevent the need to recall an email?

  • Wrapping up

What does it mean to recall an email?

Simply put, the act of retrieving a sent mail is called recalling an email. If you successfully recall an email, you can delete the sent mail or replace it with a new one. This can be useful if you have sent an email with typos, wrong recipients’ addresses, wrong attachments, etc.

However, you should know that it’s not always possible to recall an email, as there are limitations. So let’s have a look at them.

Limitations that you might face while recalling an email

You can recall an email only under certain circumstances, such as:

  • You can recall the email only before the user opens it. Once the user opens your email, you can’t recall it.

  • In some email clients like Outlook, if the recipient has disabled your email recalling ability, you won’t be able to recall sent emails.

These are some significant limitations in recalling an email and different email clients handle it differently.

Let’s learn how you can do it in Gmail and Outlook.

Steps to recall emails in Gmail and Outlook

Gmail and Outlook handle email recalling differently.

For example, Gmail wants you to do some initial settings, while Outlook wants you to have a different type of email address. So let’s learn how they do it one by one.

How to recall an email in Gmail?

Till now, you learned that the act of retrieving a sent email is called recalling an email. However, the workings of Gmail recalling are different.

Gmail cannot recall an email that is already sent. Instead, you can configure Gmail to wait before actually sending the email, so you’ll have time to stop it from being sent.

Here’s our complete guide on how to recall an email Gmail.

How to recall an email in Outlook?

Similar to Gmail, you can’t recall a sent email in However, if you use the Outlook desktop client running on Microsoft 365 or Microsoft Exchange, you can recall the email even after it is sent.

However, if the recipient has already opened your email, you cannot recall it back. Therefore, you need to execute the recall request before the user opens it (basically as quickly as possible after sending it).

Here’s our complete guide on how to recall an email Outlook.

How to prevent the need to recall an email?

You can take some steps to avoid the need to recall an email which is as follows:

1. Use Grammarly extension

The Grammarly extension shows you any grammar mistakes you make while typing your email. Simply create an account, install the extension, sign in with your credentials, and you’re set. Now, Grammarly will show you the potential typos you’ve made while typing anything in your browser, including your emails.

You can also add Grammarly to Microsoft Word and Outlook desktop apps. Here’s how to do it: How to add Grammarly to Microsoft Word and Outlook?

2. Double-check your emails before sending them

Sometimes, even Grammarly can’t find some contextual word matchings. Only a human can do that. So that’s why you need to check one more time for any errors, missing words after Grammarly checks it.

Wrapping up

You need to be calm while writing an email because this will help you avoid sending embarrassing emails. We make most of our mistakes while we’re in a hurry. So being calm and double-checking the email will help you a lot. Using an extension to check your grammar is cool as well 😎

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