There is a little known feature in newer versions of Outlook. You can display favorite folders at the top of other folders and there are some special folders you can create – including an Unread Message folder and Here is how to do it:

  1. In the Navigation Pane, click the plus sign (+) next to Search Folders to display its subfolders.
  2. Click the Unread Mail folder.

Your unread items are displayed in the message list.

Tip To make the Unread Mail folder more visible, drag it to the Favorite Folders pane.