How to Download YouTube Videos on Mac in 5 Ways

There are five different ways to download YouTube videos on Mac. If you are looking for easy and quick ways on how to download videos from YouTube to your Mac, this article is for you.

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Jane Zhou

Updated on May 15, 2024

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After reading this article, you will know five easy and fast ways to download YouTube videos on Mac. Apply one of them to save YouTube videos to your Mac and then you can watch offline without an Internet connection.

As the biggest video site in the world, YouTube has a wide range of users who search, view, and upload videos every day. However, unlike you can freely view and upload videos on YouTube, you can't download YouTube videos directly on the site. That's why so many users are looking for a way to convert YouTube videos to MP4 on iPhone/iPad, save videos from YouTube to PC, download YouTube videos on Mac, and more.

Given that, here we provide five proven ways to download videos from YouTube to Mac, including using desktop software, online service, and other workable ways. Read on to learn how to download YouTube videos on Mac in different ways and carry out the one best suited to your needs.

Some of the ways below need you to download and install the desktop software, while others may not. Learn them in detail and you will know which one is the best YouTube downloader for you.

How to Download YouTube Videos on Mac Safely

100% no ads and no plugins, EaseUS Video Downloader is a reliable video downloader for Mac & Windows that you can use without any worries about bothering ads or add-ons. With it, you can download videos from, YouTube, Rumble, and more to your Mac. Here are some of its key features:

  • Multiple download formats - Downloads YouTube videos in MP4, MP3, or WAV format
  • High-quality videos - Downloads YouTube videos up to 8K
  • Batch downloads - Allows downloading videos in bulk
  • Subtitle downloads - Allows you to download the subtitles of the video you want

To download YouTube Videos on Mac easily:

Step 1. Open EaseUS Video Downloader and choose your preferred format and quality.


Step 2. Head to YouTube and find your favorite video that you wish to download, then click "Paste Link."The download of the YouTube video to your Mac will commence.


Step 3.  Once done, click "Open File Location" to locate and check the downloaded video.


Disclaimer: Please note that it's illegal to download copyrighted content and use them for commercial intensions without authorization. Before you download videos, you'd better check whether the sources are copyrighted.

If you find this is helpful tip, share this guide to help more.


Other than YouTube, EaseUS Video Downloader also supports many other video sites or social networking sites, including Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, Twitch, and more. If you always need to download online video or audio from various sites, it's advisable to use such a tool to help in various situations. The next time you need to download Facebook videos in HD or save Twitch clips to your Mac, you won't need to ask for help from the Internet anymore. 

How to Save YouTube Videos on Mac Online for Free

Don't want to install any software? If so, you may prefer online YouTube video downloaders compared with desktop software. Honestly speaking, although much more convenient, an online YouTube downloader may cause more trouble than a desktop program. According to my own experience, there are some issues that may occur while using an online tool to save YouTube videos on a computer, including:

  • Ads keep popping up
  • The users are redirected to another shopping site
  • The tool can't find the video according to the link

And more. Luckily, not all online YouTube downloaders are that troubling. Here is Keepvid that works well to get videos from YouTube onto your Mac.

Keepvid is one of the most popular online video downloaders that allows you to download YouTube videos on a computer by inserting the video link into the address bar. You will like it if downloading YouTube videos in different formats and quality is what you need. Besides, it also serves the function of an audio converter that will extract music or other audio files from a YouTube video for you.

To download a YouTube video on Mac with Keepvid:

Step 1. Go to YouTube and copy the URL of the video you want to download.

Step 2. Visit on your Mac and click the "Download" button.

Step 3. After an analyzing process, you will see the download options available, including videos in different quality and audio in varying formats. Choose the format and click "Download" to start downloading YouTube videos to your Mac.

How to download YouTube videos on Mac - Use Keepvid

How to Download YouTube Videos for Mac with Chrome/Firefox

Want to download a YouTube video with the browser? If that's exactly what you want, you can't miss the helpful browser extensions shown below, which allow you to save YouTube videos on a Mac using Chrome or Firefox for free.

To download videos from YouTube with Chrome:

Step 1. Go to visit YouTube Video and MP3 Downloader.

Step 2. The webpage will detect your browser automatically. Confirm your browser and click "INSTALL VIA CROSSPILOT".

Step 3. Download and install the extension. Afterward, restart the browser.

Step 4. Go to YouTube and play the video you want to download.

Step 5. Now you should see there is a Download button under the video. Click the Download button to save the YouTube video to your laptop directly or click the three dots next to it to choose other qualities available. (If you don't see the download button, click the icon of the YouTube Video and MP3 Downloader from the menu bar of the browser to download the video.)

How to download YouTube videos on Mac - Use Addon

To save a YouTube video on Mac with a YouTube video downloader for Firefox:

Step 1. Go to add the extension - Easy Youtube Video Downloader Express to Firefox.

Step 2. Restart Firefox.

Step 3. Go to YouTube and play the video you intend to download.

Step 4. Under the video, click the "Download" button and choose one of the versions (MP4 360p, MP4 720p, MP4 1080p, MP3...) to download.

How to download YouTube videos on Mac - Use Addon for Firefox

Of course, there are video download tools for Safari. You can search on the Internet and choose the one you like.

How to Download YouTube Videos to Mac with VLC Media Player

How can you download YouTube videos on your Mac for free? One of the answers is to use the VLC media player. VLC is known as a free and open-source portable cross-platform media player software and streaming media. It also enables you to download a YouTube video on your computer, be it Mac, PC, or laptop.

Step 1. Download and install the VLC media player on your Mac and launch the program.

Step 2. Go to YouTube and copy the link to the video you attempt to download.

Step 3. In VLC, choose "File" > "Open Network". In the "Open Source" window, paste the video URL in the address bar and click "Open". 

Step 4. Right-click the video and select "Media Information".

Step 5. Copy the content in the "Location" bar and paste the copied URL into the address bar. Then press "return" to begin to play on your browser.

Step 7. Right-click the video and select "Save Video as.." to start downloading videos from YouTube to your Mac. 

How to download videos from YouTube to Mac - Use VLC

How to  Capture Videos from YouTube to Mac with Screen Recording Features

Other than downloading videos from YouTube, you can choose to record the video and save it on your Mac. This method works best when you can't download a YouTube video due to copyright issues or other problems.

To capture the screen, you can either use the built-in screen recording feature in macOS or QuickTime Player.

  • To use the built-in screen recording feature: Press Command + Shift + 5.
  • To use QuickTime: Choose "File" in QuickTime and select "New Screen Recording".

Other Tips to Download YouTube Video & Audio

Other than downloading YouTube videos to Mac, there are times when you need to save video or audio files to other devices like an iPhone or Android phone. Given that, there is a full collection of ways to download items from YouTube. Whether you want to download YouTube videos to an iPhone or download MP3 from YouTube on Mac, you will find the way you need from the tips below.

Tip 1. How to Download YouTube Videos on iPhone/iPad

When it comes to downloading YouTube videos to an iPhone or iPad, there is an official way for you, which is to use YouTube Premium. With YouTube Premium subscriptions, you will be able to download YouTube videos to your mobile device for offline watching and keep them for 30 days. Although YouTube Premium disallows you to download YouTube videos to a computer, be it a Mac or PC, it allows you to save online videos to your mobile device directly. Check YouTube Premium here and select a plan if you need to.

Another common way to download YouTube videos to an iPhone or iPad is using an app called Shortcut. Get the app from the App Store and then follow the steps below to download YouTube videos to your iPhone or iPad.

Step 1. Visit on your mobile device and download Shortcuts.

Step 2. Click the "Share" button in any app on your iDevice, click "More", and then switch on "Shortcuts".

Step 3. Go to watch the video in the YouTube app, click "Share", and choose "Shortcuts" > "Download YouTube". Then the download will start.

Step 4. When it has done, select "Save to photo album".

Step 5. Now you can see the video existing in the Camera Roll of the Photos app on your iDevice.

By the way, if you have downloaded the videos you like to your Mac, you can also transfer videos from the Mac to your iPhone or iPad to get things done.

Tip 2. How to Download Videos from YouTube to Android

Similar to downloading YouTube videos to an iDevice, there are also three workable solutions to get videos from YouTube to Android devices. You can use YouTube Premium, a mobile app, or download the videos to your computer first and then transfer them to your Android device. Besides, it's relatively easy to transfer videos from a computer to an Android device, because it only requires a USB cable in most cases.

Tip 3. How to Download YouTube Live Streams

Unlike downloading uploaded videos, it's more difficult to download live streams from YouTube. Luckily, with EaseUS Video Downloader introduced above, you can also download YouTube live streams easily. Just copy the URL of the streaming video from YouTube, paste it into EaseUS Video Downloader, and then let it save the video to your computer.

Tip 3. How to Download Songs from YouTube Music

There is also a rich collection of music on YouTube and you may want to get them for offline listening at one time or another. You can use YouTube Premium to get permission to download YouTube songs or use EaseUS Video Downloader to download songs or playlists from YouTube Music.

Here are the steps:

Step 1. Open EaseUS Video Downloader on your computer. As for music playlist download, you should choose the format of audio between MP3 and WAV. Then, choose the quality you'd like to download with. 

download youtube music playlist choose format and quality

Step 2. Open the music or the playlist you want to download with. Copy its link. Then, press the "Paste URL" button in EaseUS Video Downloader. Choose "Download all files in Playlist/Channel" to continue. 

download whole music playlist

Step 3. Wait for downloading process to finish. You can find the downloaded playlist in the "Finished" menu.

Disclaimer: Please make sure that your download behavior is legal in your country! EaseUS does not advocate downloading any video/audio for sale, distribution, or other commercial purposes.

Tip 4. How to Convert YouTube Videos to MP3

Have you ever wanted to convert YouTube videos to MP3 to extract audio you like? This is actually quite easy to achieve. To download YouTube videos to MP3 directly, you can apply a tool like EaseUS Video Downloader or an online YouTube to MP3 converter. If you decide to use EaseUS Video Downloader, you just need to select MP3 as the target output format before the download start. While if you prefer an online tool, just search the Internet, and then you will find there are numerous choices for you.

Tip 5. How to Get YouTube Video Thumbnails

In addition to videos and songs, there is one more type you may want to get from YouTube - the video thumbnail. Yes, EaseUS Video Downloader also helps to download YouTube thumbnails. Since it will get the highest quality of the image by default, you can try other online YouTube thumbnail grabbers if you want to download YouTube thumbnails of other qualities.

Common Issues Related to YouTube Video Download

There are some frequently asked questions from users about YouTube video download:

"How do I download YouTube videos to my Mac for free?"

If you have read this article, you know now that most of the five methods detailed in this guide enable you to save YouTube videos to Mac for free.

"Can I download a video from YouTube with YouTube Premium?"

The YouTube Premium subscription allows you to download videos from YouTube, but only to mobile devices like phones and tablets. Thus, if you attempt to save a YouTube video to Mac, it won't help.

"Why can't I download YouTube videos?"

If you are going to download a private video or a video containing music, you may fail since these videos may give rise to copyright issues.

The Bottom Line

Now you not only know how to download YouTube videos to your Mac but also learn all the other tips to download video/audio files from YouTube to other devices. If you find this detailed guide helpful, don't hesitate to share it with others. By the way, if you want to do further editions on your downloaded videos, some of the best free video editing software with no watermark can make it easy. 

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