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How to Microwave Sweet Potatoes

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When you are super hungry and looking for a snack, then microwaved sweet potatoes are the answer to your cravings. Microwave a sweet potatofor a quick fix that keeps you full for long time. 

How do you microwave a sweet potato? Wash and trim the sweet potato, then pat completely dry and pierce the skin a few times with a fork. Place the sweet potato on microwave-safe plate and microwave for 5 minutes in high, then flip it over and continue microwaving for 30 second increments until the flesh is soft and tender.

The simple to prepare recipe with a sweet potato is a perfect side dish or even a great meal after crowning with wholesome toppings. Baked sweet potatoes are indeed an inexpensive way of adding some weight on your food plate.

In addition, leftover sweet potatoes are a perfect meal prep that is easily snacked on after reheating sweet potatoes in the microwave. Whether you’re thinking of stretching the food dollar or have created a baked potato bar to have a fun mealtime, microwaved sweet potatoes are a great way to please your taste buds.

This article covers everything you need to know about microwaving sweet potatoes. Below are detailed answers to frequently asked questions about the best ways to microwave sweet potatoes and microwave tips that will make the process seamless.

Can you microwave a sweet potato?

Yes! It is totally possible to cook a sweet potato in microwave. Microwaving sweet potatoes helps them to retain more nutrients that often get lost in the lengthy process of baking.

The microwave method is renowned for its shorter cooking time compared to other forms of preparing food.

Microwaving sweet potatoes is not much different than baking the sweet potato inside the oven. However, microwaving is much faster and more convenient cooking process. 

While some people might avoid the crispy and dry skin possible through sweet potatoes that are oven baked, you get a similar outcome through popping the microwaved sweet potatoes inside the broiler for some time after it is nuked.

How many sweet potatoes can you microwave at once?

It is recommended to microwave 2 medium-sized sweet potatoes at once. However, they should be cooked individually if you are microwaving more than 2 or bigger size. Microwaving 2 sweet potatoes at once does take slightly more cooking time compared to one.

In general, it takes around five minute for cooking a single medium sized sweet potato inside the microwave. Add two minutes in microwave cooking time for each additional sweet potato

Quantity of 4 to 5 medium sized potatoes is an easy way to pack on some extra calories to the meal. By microwaving, the side dish also gets prepared in lesser time without have to pay close attention to the doneness.

Can you microwave a sweet potato before baking?

It is possible to microwave sweet potatoes before baking. The microwave can initiate the cooking, while oven baking will roast the outside and give the sweet caramelized flavor we all love.

Sweet potatoes are nutrient dense foods with high amount of beta-carotene and vitamin A. Though it may seem like they take forever to cook, the microwave oven reduces the cooking of a sweet potato within a fraction of the time compared to a conventional oven.

  1. Scrub sweet potatoes under running water for removing harmful chemicals and dirt. Use a paper towel to blot completely dry.
  2. Cut away any bruised or wooden sweet potato sections using a sharp knife.
  3. Use a fork for poking holes in the sweet potato to let steam pass freely upon cooking.
  4. Place sweet potatoes on a microwave-safe plate with equal distance between for even cooking.
  5. The microwave should be on high setting while cooking sweet potatoes for 3 to 5 minutes, depending on how many sweet potatoes, the actual weight and the wattage level of the microwave.
  6. Flip over the sweet potatoes with tongs when halfway through the desired cook time. Now reset the timer and continue microwaving the sweet potatoes for 3 to 5 minutes. It is recommended to check back every minute to verify the doneness so that they are not overcooked.

To check whether the microwaved sweet potatoes are fully cooked or not, you can push a fork, toothpick or paring knife towards the center of the thickest part to see whether the flesh is soft in the center. If not ready, put the potatoes back in the microwave for another one minute interval until all potatoes are soft in the center. 

Small ones are cooked quicker that larger, so you can remove the smaller ones and continue nuking the larger potatoes until they’re soft.

How long do you cook a sweet potato in the microwave?

As a rule of thumb, a single 8-ounce sweet potato will take around 5 minutes to microwave on high power. For larger sized sweet potatoes, the cooking time can range from 7 to 10 minutes.

The larger ones are known for taking longer time, therefore may prefer microwaving 1-minute intervals until the center is really cooked. After being cooking, the sweet potatoes can easily be pierced through the center with a paring knife or fork.

Always test whether they’re fully cooked or not before placing them on a plate to serve. 

Tips to microwave a sweet potato without drying it out

The last thing that we want to happen is serving a dried out sweet potato, that does not sound delicious. There are some helpful microwave tips to prevent drying out your sweet potato while nuking it.

Here are some essential tips that you need to know while cooking a sweet potato in the microwave oven without drying it out:

  • Avoid overcooking too long and only microwave until the center turns soft. 
  • Always place the sweet potato on a microwave safe plate when cooking.
  • Double check the doneness and flip over the sweet potatoes at the halfway of cooking time to avoid any crisp or dried up edges.
  • Different microwaves have slightly different cooking times. When using a powerful 1000-watt microwave that cooks fast, minimize the cooking time and keep a watchful eye on the doneness. Similarly if more cooking time is required, extend a few more minutes with short intervals and checking in between.
  • A damp paper towel can be used to keep the sweet potato moist and avoid drying up when microwaved. 
  • Some people wrap the sweet potato in microwaveable plastic wrap, but exercise caution when using this method because the intense steam may melt the plastic.
  • When sweet potatoes are cooked in a microwave, they tend to get soft and tender skins. If you wish to bring a little bit dryness and crispiness similar to an oven-baked sweet potato, you can slide the cooked potatoes under the broiler to allow the skin to turn crisp and dry.

Best way to microwave a sweet potato without drying it out

If you don’t prefer the sweet potato getting dried out from microwave cooking, the best thing to do is wrapping a wet paper towel around the sweet potato. Make sure that the sweet potato isn’t dripping wet, but it’s better to have it saturated rather than slightly damp.

By using a wet paper towel, the sweet potato will prevent from getting dried out inside the microwave. Place the wrapped sweet potatoes on a microwave safe plate, and even space them apart from each other. 

Use potholders or thongs for flipping over the sweet potatoes or removing them after being fully cooked. Otherwise, wait till they cool down and you can use hands.

Sweet potatoes are among the most versatile root vegetables packed full of nutrients. They pair well with almost every meal type, and even desserts as well. 

While oven baking process for sweet potatoes might take an hour or more, sweet potato cooked in a microwave only take around five minutes. Cook them quickly for a power packed, nutrient rich meal.

How to microwave a sweet potato

Microwaving Sweet Potatoes: Final Thoughts

Cooking sweet potato in the microwave is a quick and easy way to add side dishes or prepare the main ingredient to your recipe. But for the best results from microwave cooking, you need to follow these tips and instructions.

Under running water, use a scrubbing brush to clean the sweet potatoes and pat dry.

Pierce the sweet potato with a fork 5 to 6 times around all sides. 

Place the sweet potatoes on a microwave-safe plate and set up high for 5 to 10 minutes. To cook 1 sweet potato for 5 minutes and add 2 minutes per any additional sweet potatoes. 

Rotate and flip them over halfway through to heat equally on all sides.

Check with fork to see if you can spear the center easily. If it is still too firm, continue to nuke the sweet potatoes in the microwave in 1 minute increments until desired texture is reached.

When you wish to consume a nutrient packed treat, pop a sweet potato in the microwave and nuke for about 5 minute. That’s all that is required for a healthy bite to eat whenever you have a simple craving.