LC3/ATG8 plays an essential role in autophagy. Here the authors show that LC3B exhibits RNA-binding ability and induces rapid degradation of target mRNAs via autophagic activation, highlighting the interplay between autophagy and RNA biology. LC3/ATG8 has long been appreciated to play a central role in autophagy, by which a variety of cytoplasmic materials are delivered to lysosomes and eventually degraded. However, information on the molecular functions of LC3 in RNA biology is very limited. Here, we show that LC3B is an RNA-binding protein that directly binds to mRNAs with a preference for a consensus AAUAAA motif corresponding to a polyadenylation sequence. Autophagic activation promotes an association between LC3B and target mRNAs and triggers rapid degradation of target mRNAs in a CCR4-NOT-dependent manner before autolysosome formation. Furthermore, our transcriptome-wide analysis reveals that PRMT1 mRNA, which encodes a negative regulator of autophagy, is one of the major substrates. Rapid degradation of PRMT1 mRNA by LC3B facilitates autophagy. Collectively, we demonstrate that LC3B acts as an RNA-binding protein and an mRNA decay factor necessary for efficient autophagy.