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How to Make Potatoes in the Microwave

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Three Ways to Make Potatoes in the Microwave

Wondering how to make potatoes in the microwave? Here are three delicious and healthy methods.

If you think you should avoid taters because they are starchy and fattening, think again. According to the U.S. Potato Board, a medium, skin-on potato has only 110 calories and is loaded with fiber and nutrients. You can enjoy a baked potato for lunch or roasted potatoes as a side dish for dinner without any guilt. When you make potatoes in the microwave, you can have them in a hurry as well.

Microwave Baked Potatoes

Perhaps the most popular way to make potatoes in the microwave is baking them. After washing one to four medium russets or other baking potatoes, use the tip of a sharp knife to poke slits 1/2" to 3/4" deep at various places around the potato. This allows steam to escape during baking for a dryer, fluffier tater.

Place on a microwave-safe plate and cook on high power for three to four minutes per potato. If you are making four potatoes, heat no longer than 12 minutes. Remove the hot baked potatoes using an oven mitt. Slice lengthwise at the top of the potato and fluff with a fork before adding your favorite toppings.

Microwave Mashed Potatoes

Who doesn't love mashed potatoes? This classic side dish is perfect for almost any meal. Once you learn how to make them in the microwave, you might never go back to boiling your spuds.

Wash four medium potatoes and put them in a microwave-safe casserole dish. Cover with plastic wrap, leaving a small corner uncovered for venting. Do not pierce or peel the potatoes before cooking. Heat on high power for 10 to 12 minutes. The microwave will heat the liquid in the potatoes, essentially steaming them from the inside out.

Remove the hot potatoes using an oven mitt and place in a large mixing bowl. Add 1/2 cup milk, 1/2 cup sour cream or yogurt, a tablespoon of butter or margarine and salt and pepper to taste. Mix using a potato masher or large fork. If the additional ingredients cool the potatoes too much, return the mixture to the microwave for a minute or two.

Microwave Roasted Potatoes

Roasted potatoes are delicious alongside a slow cooked chicken or roast on a lazy Sunday. Use your microwave to quickly enjoy them any day of the week. The secrets are olive oil and plastic wrap, which help brown the taters and cook them more quickly.

Wash four medium potatoes. You can peel them, too, if you like. Cut into one-inch cubes and place in a microwave-safe casserole or other dish. Drizzle with two tablespoons of olive oil and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and your favorite seasonings. Cover with plastic wrap, leaving a small corner uncovered for venting. Microwave on high for 10 minutes. The hot oil browns the potatoes, while the plastic wrap creates steam to cook the insides to tender perfection. Remove the hot potatoes using an oven mitt and serve hot.

Now that you know how to make potatoes in the microwave, experiment with your own techniques. Potatoes can be healthy, hearty option any time you want them. Avoid drowning them in fat- and calorie-laden toppings, such as gobs of butter or sour cream or handfuls of cheese and bacon. If you long for more flavor, experiment with herbs and spices, and add broccoli, salsa or turkey chili.

Potato Recipes

So, you've baked potatoes in the microwave. Now what will you do with them? You can eat them as they are, or use one of these delicious recipes to enhance them:

Here's the basic microwave-baked potato recipe described above:

What are your favorite nutritious tater toppings?

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