Microwave baked potatoes come out perfectly fluffy and tender every time - and only take about 10 minutes!
I’ve always had baked potatoes this way, made in the microwave. It never occurred to me growing up that they aren’t actually "baked."
I was well past college, well into my adult years, before I realized that not everyone made potatoes this way.
But everyone should!
These potatoes are perfectly fluffy and tender and steamy and so delicious! And they are ready in about 10 minutes. 🙌
Which is perfect because who has time to heat up an oven and let a couple of potatoes roast for an hour?!
(You can also check out Air Fryer baked potatoes, which are a bit faster than the oven method and get a crispy crust, but still not quite as quick as these.)
Plus, everyone can fix and top their microwave baked potato just as they please, so they work well for families with different tastes (aka picky eaters).
I even make them this way to cut down the time needed to make loaded twice baked potatoes, which are my daughter's fave.
So let's get cooking.
Now, I’ve got some notes and substitutions coming up on how to make microwave baked potatoes. Just tryin’ to be helpful.
(I've made these A LOT and want to share all the details so you can get them perfect, too!)
If you want to jump on down to the recipe, simply scroll right on through the rest of the text. The recipe card is near the bottom of the page, above the comments section.
How to make microwave baked potatoes:
- Scrub the potatoes and poke each potato 5-6 times with a fork - I do it a few times on each side. Place potatoes directly onto the microwave plate.
- The time depends on the number of potatoes and the size of your potatoes. See just below for an easy-to-read list.
- When the time is up, get a towel or oven mitt and gently squeeze the sides of the potato. If it gives without resistance and starts to open up, it's ready. If it still seems a bit firm, microwave for another minute at a time until tender. If your potatoes are different sizes, remove the ones that are tender from the microwave and continue cooking only the potatoes that need additional time.
- Carefully cut open your potato, add your favorite toppings and enjoy!
Let's talk specifics about the timing.
How long does it take to microwave potatoes?
- The exact timing will depend on your microwave power, potato size and the number of potatoes. Here's a general guide.
- For 2 medium-sized russet potatoes, start with 10-11 minutes of microwave time on 100% power. If the potatoes don't seem tender (give them a squeeze with an oven mitt; they should give readily), add another 1 to 2 minutes at a time.
- For 4 medium-sized russet potatoes, start with 15-16 minutes.
- For a single potato, start with 5-6 minutes.
- If your potatoes are especially large or fat - like the kind you'd get in a restaurant - you'll likely need an extra couple minutes of microwave time. Just put them back in the microwave and add more time until they get cooked through.
- It's not necessary to turn your potatoes over during the cook time; I usually don't because I'm busy doing something else for dinner. However, you certainly can and it can be helpful for larger or fatter potatoes to get them to cook evenly and a bit more quickly.
(Oh, and check out this post if you're looking for microwave sweet potatoes; the timing is just a little different.)
OK, let's really make these potatoes fun with the toppings! You know I love adding some toppings...
- Butter, sour cream or Greek yogurt
- Shredded cheddar cheese, crumbled blue cheese, or feta or goat cheese
- Crumbled cooked bacon
- Chopped chives or fresh herbs
- Guacamole or diced avocado
- Salsa or pico de gallo
- Hot sauce or sriracha
- Sprinkle of paprika or other seasonings
So many possibilities!
Any way you serve them, I love that potatoes are perfectly portion controlled. I tend to get a bit crazy when piling pasta or rice on my plate, but a potato? The whole thing is mine.
(I love when I don't have to share!)
And I’m one of those people who eats the entire potato, skin and all. I take after my dad that way. I'm a serious potato lover, and these microwave baked potatoes measure up beautifully. 👌
I hope you give these a try - they make dinner so easy and you end up with perfect, fast microwave "baked" potatoes every time.
P.S. You can sign up for my free e-newsletter and get my free e-cookbook with 10 easy weeknight dinners!
P.P.S. This is my favorite potato scrubber (and it's less than $5!)
- 1-4 medium russet potatoes
- Salt and pepper; butter, Greek yogurt or sour cream; shredded cheese, blue cheese, or feta or goat cheese; crumbled bacon; chopped chives or fresh herbs; hot sauce or sriracha; avocado or guac; salsa or pico de gallo; paprika or other seasonings, etc.
- Scrub the potatoes. Poke each potato 5-6 times with a fork - I do it a few times on each side. Place potatoes directly onto the microwave plate.
- Microwave on high. The time depends on the number of potatoes and the size of your potatoes. For 1 medium-sized potato, start with 5-6 minutes. For 2 medium-sized potatoes, start with 10-11 minutes microwave time. For 4 potatoes, start with 15-16 minutes in the microwave. When the time is up, get a towel or oven mitt and gently squeeze the sides of the potato. If it gives without resistance and starts to open up, it's ready. If it still seems a bit firm, return to the microwave for another minute at a time until tender.
- Remove from the microwave carefully (use an oven mitt to protect your hands), then slice open, fluffy the potato and add any desired toppings. Serve and enjoy!
If your potatoes are different sizes, they may finish cooking at slightly different times. Simply remove the ones that are tender and finished from the microwave and then continue cooking only the larger potatoes that need additional time.
It’s not necessary to turn your potatoes over during the cook time. However, you certainly can and it can be helpful for larger or fatter potatoes to get them to cook evenly and a bit more quickly.
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Serving Size:1 potato
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 110Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 0mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 2gProtein: 3g