How To Microwave a Potato

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
5 from 7 reviews

Kitchen Tips Side Dishes Vegetarian

Cook time Cook time: 12 minutes

Learn how to microwave a potato! The result is as fluffy as a baked potato, but with less hassle and quicker cooking time. It is perfect for busy weeknights!

Easy side dishes are a great option during the busy weekdays for the whole family to enjoy. We love to pair this with meaty main dishes like Grilled Steak, Mongolian Chicken, and Bacon Wrapped Jalapeno Popper Chicken.

Microwave Baked Potato

If you need a quick dinner or side dish on the table with zero delays, then a microwaved baked potato is pretty much the perfect solution. You can enjoy it in under 15 minutes with this recipe!

We have shared with you before how easy it is to achieve fluffy baked spuds in our recipes before using the Instant Pot, the Slow Cooker, and the conventional oven. However, this method is the quickest way to cook them at the fraction of the time. 

But nothing beats doing this dish in the microwave as it is extremely easy and uncomplicated. So, if the rest of your other kitchen appliances are preoccupied, and you still have the microwave free, then, make this dish!

I like how versatile baked spuds are. With their neutral flavor, you can just season them up with little salt and little olive oil, and you have a quick side dish to go with your pork chops or any main course. 

Ingredients needed:

  • Potatoes: Feel free to use your favorite type. I go with russet potatoes. However, feel free to use yellow potatoes, red potatoes, or sweet potatoes
  • Butter: There is nothing better than fluffy potatoes topped with melted butter! 🙂
  • For the topping: Cheddar cheese, sour cream, and chopped green onions.
  • Salt and black pepper to taste. 

How do you microwave a potato?

Follow these simple steps:

  1. Clean: First, scrub the surface thoroughly.
  2. Microwave: Put it on a microwave safe dish, and microwave on high for 5 minutes per side.
  3. Season: Take it out. Then, cut it in half lengthwise. Mash the inside a little with a fork, and season with salt and pepper. Top each half with cheese and butter. Put the halves back in to cook for another minute until the cheese melts.
  4. Serve: Top with sour cream and green onions, then, serve!

Are white potatoes healthy?

Yes! The topic has been quite controversial since many believed that it is not. A lot of people associate this vegetable with deep-fried French fries and chips that are high in fat. But that is not always the case.

Based on a USDA report, a medium spud baked with the skin on has considerable amounts of potassium, vitamin C, vitamin B6, and manganese. It also has negligible fat, 164 kcal, and 37 g of carbs.

What makes the spuds potentially unhealthy is the way they are prepared. Deep-frying and adding high-fat ingredients significantly increase the fat content.

Also, much of the nutrients are found on the skin and so, it is best to include that in your dishes. The key here is to scrub the surface clean to get rid of any dirt. In this recipe, we will do just that!

Is it safe to microwave a potato?

Yes! It is perfectly fine. What you need to do is poke it first to form vents around it so steam will not build up. If you skip this step, it might explode.

How long does it take to cook a potato in the microwave?

Note that this recipe is for a single spud. If you intend to cook more, then do so but the cooking time will vary.

To estimate the cooking time, multiply the number of spuds by 5 minutes. For example, start with 10 minutes for 2 pieces, or 15 minutes for 3 pieces. If the time is not enough, cook further until soft in increments of one minute.

How can you tell if a potato is cooked?

You can do so by poking the sides. It is cooked already if it can be poked effortlessly with a fork or if it can be squeezed easily.

Favorite toppings:

  • Parmesan cheese
  • Crispy bacon 
  • Olive oil
  • Chopped jalapeno
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Pesto sauce
  • Greek yogurt
  • Guacamole
  • Ranch dressing

What to serve with it?

This is the perfect side dish to enjoy with some of the following recipes:

How to store it:

  • To refrigerate: First, let them cool at room temperature. Then, refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container until 5 days.
  • To freeze: You can individually wrap each spud in aluminum foil and then plastic wrap, and freeze them for up to 3 months.
  • Reheat: Simply put it in the microwave safe plate and reheat until warm.

More potato dishes to try:

Recipe Tips:

  • Use oven mitts to remove them from the microwave oven along with a pair of tongs. 
  • Also, the size of the potato matter on how long to cook them. For larger potatoes, the cooking time will increase by a few minutes. 
  • If you are cooking many pieces of varying sizes at once, be ready to remove the smaller ones ahead of the bigger ones as they cook faster.
  • For uniform cooking, it is best to use similar size spuds. 
  • The outcome may not have skin as crispy as you like. What you can do to have crispy skin is to pop them quickly in a preheated oven at 425°F after microwaving.
  • In addition, for faster cooking time, simply poke holes into them. 
How To Microwave a Potato

How to Microwave a Potato

Learn how to microwave a potato! The result is as fluffy as a baked potato, but with less hassle and quicker cooking time. It is perfect for busy weeknights! 
5 from 7 votes
Save Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Servings: 1 potato
Calories: 343kcal
Author: Catalina Castravet


  • 1 large russet potato
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 tablespoons shredded Cheddar cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon sour cream
  • Chopped green onions


  • Scrub and wash the potato well, prick several times with a fork. Place on a plate.
  • Cook on full power in the microwave for 5 minutes. Turn over, and cook for another 5 more minutes.
  • When the potato is soft, remove from the microwave, and cut it in half lengthwise.
  • Season with salt and pepper, mash the inside with a fork. Top with butter and cheese. Return to the microwave, and cook for 1 minute to melt the cheese.
  • Top with sour cream and green onions, serve.


Calories: 343kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 12g | Fat: 21g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 320mg | Potassium: 879mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 0g | Vitamin A: 755IU | Vitamin C: 24.3mg | Calcium: 265mg | Iron: 6.9mg
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These are such helpful tips to get that potato ready to eat in no-time! I generally use the oven for the crispy skin, but if I'm hungry and want to eat that potato now this will be perfect!


rika livingston

This is a brilliant idea! Cooking potatoes in the oven or on the stove is very time-consuming!


Bohemian Babushka

Yummy AND fast? Si, Por Favor and Gracias! Will definitely be trying out this recipe.


Carl Dworman -Mexico# 55-322-309-4731

Follow the directions. It works!!


Carl Dworman -Mexico# 55-322-309-4731

Get a new microwave oven. 5 minutes is all It takes.



I have microwaved potaties for years, when pressed for time, or as a first step for faster home fries, but I find they often seem to have a gummy texture than oven baking does not produce. I usually use Yukon golds. I laugh when you talk of the health benefits of a potato and then load it up with butter, cheese and sour cream. What, no bacon?


You don't have to serve your potatoes loaded, I make recommendations and give options for all my readers :) choose what works best for you



I find putting the potato in a bit of water in a microwave safe Pampered Chef pot after poking does the trick. The steam keeps the skin moist and it doesn't dry out.


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