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How to Reheat Potatoes in Microwave

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The quickest method of reheating potatoes is to use a microwave. However, it is not easy to get the potatoes evenly heated throughout.

How to reheat potatoes in the microwave? Place the potatoes in a microwave-safe dish and adjust to the reheat setting or 50% power level. Nuke for about 5 minutes, stir occasionally and rotate the dish. Continue with 30 second intervals until the internal temperature reaches 74 degrees Celsius or 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Even as simple as it sounds, it is not easy to get the best results every time. Follow a special technique to use microwave to reheat potatoes to enjoy the meal that tastes like fresh cooked potatoes. 

In this article, learn how to reheat potatoes more easily and effectively to avoid any dried up results. Answered below are the frequently asked questions about reheating potatoes and everything you need to know about the process.

Is it dangerous to reheat potatoes?

Yes, reheating potatoes can be dangerous as the high moisture content may cause the potatoes to explode or the increased levels of steam can cause a severe burn.

Additionally, cooked potatoes are a potentially hazardous food item that must be properly stored and fully reheated before serving the leftovers.

According to experts, when you leave cooked potatoes to cool down at room temperature for a long time, then they can be infected by bacteria causing clostridium botulism. 

It can happen more easily if the potatoes are tightly wrapped in a foil or sealed in an airtight container while cooling. This type of bacteria cannot be killed by reheating cooked potatoes even on an extremely hot dish. 

If you frequently reheat potatoes in the microwave, then they can increase the risk of food poisoning. They must be properly cooled down and placed in the refrigerator right after serving.

To avoid food poisoning from reheating leftover potatoes, quickly cool and refrigerate them as soon as possible after cooking. Also, when cooking potato, remove the eyes and nooks in potato skins where bacteria can be found and starts rapidly multiplying after the cooking process. 

How to Store Leftover Potatoes

However, before reheating potatoes consider the proper ways to store leftover potatoes so that they are revived easily and safe to eat. If they are stored properly until you are going to reheat them, then you can easily reheat them in the microwave. 

But, if they are left on the counter to cool down for several hours, then food borne bacteria has a chance to multiply. It is not recommended to reheat them, even if they are wrapped in aluminum foil as they can be infected by bacteria.

The microorganisms can increase the risk of food poisoning due to the growth of botulism. This is not a risk worth taking.

Before storing the leftover cooked potatoes in the fridge, remove the aluminum foil wrapped on them and make sure they fully cool down to room temperature. Rewrap the baked potatoes in a piece of plastic wrap, aluminum foil or keep inside an airtight container.

Cooked potatoes should be wrapped tightly before refrigerating to prevent drying out while being stored. Cooked potatoes will lose moisture if refrigerated without being sealed tightly.

How do you reheat potatoes in the microwave?

Microwave is perfect way to reheat leftover foods, including potatoes. Though the use of the microwave can help in reheating potatoes quickly, it has a tendency to dry them out when microwaving without caution. 

To avoid drying out the potatoes while reheating in the microwave, cut them into halves and wrap each half with a damp paper towel and heat for 2-3 minutes.

Further instruction on how to reheat potatoes in the microwave, follow these steps:

  • Ensure to store leftover cooked potatoes in a fridge and take them out of the fridge let them come to room temperature for about 15 minutes. 
  • Put them on a microwave-safe plate. 
  • Reheat the pre-baked potatoes in a microwave for 2-3 minutes.
  • Check that the internal temperature reaches 74 degrees Celsius or 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Can you reheat potatoes the next day? Yes, you can definitely reheat potatoes the next day. In fact that is when they are at the freshest. 

It ultimately depends on how the potatoes are stored, but they may last 3 to 5 days after being prepared if kept under the right conditions.

How long do you heat a potato in the microwave?

Usually, it takes 3-5 minutes to heat a potato in the microwave. The size of the potato, quantity of potatoes and wattage of the microwave affect the timing.

The time taken to heat a potato in a microwave depends upon how the potato was stored. Is it already cooked, or baked or is it raw? If it is stored in the refrigerator then it may take a bit longer time to heat than if the potato is at room temperature.

In addition to the starting temperature, the amount of potatoes affect the heating time in the microwave. Two medium-sized potatoes may take a minute or two longer than a single large potato. 

Lastly, microwave appliances come in a variety of sizes and wattage levels. The energy output will also affect how quickly the microwave can reheat food.

Tips to microwave a potato without drying it out

Preserving moisture in a cooked potato is essential. First of all, the cooked potato must be cooked, cooled and stored properly to ensure it doesn’t dry out.

When reheating a potato, it can dry out very easily without exercising caution. 

To microwave a potato without drying it out, follow the tips briefly discussed here under:

  • Scrub the potatoes to clean the surface thoroughly and wash them under running water. After patting dry the potatoes, use a paring knife to trim away any marks on them, but never try to remove the eyes.
  • Use a fork to pierce the potatoes 4-5 times on each side. While baking the potatoes, these pricks will allow the steam to escape out of the potatoes so they don’t explode.
  • Rub all the potatoes with salt, pepper, and a little bit of olive oil. It will help in cooking the potatoes and add some delicious flavor.
  • Put the potatoes on a microwave safe plate to microwave them for 5 minutes at full power.
  • Flip the potatoes and continue microwaving for at least for 3-5 minutes more, depending upon the number of potatoes you are microwaving.
  • Check whether they are fully cooked or not by piercing a paring knife or fork to the center of each potato. If some of the potatoes are not cooked well, then you can continue microwaving for 1 minute intervals to let them cook thoroughly. 
  • Allow the potatoes to cool down for a couple minutes before serving. 
  • You can also cool down these potatoes completely if you have to store them in your fridge. When properly stored, cooked potatoes are good for up to 4 days by reheating them in a microwave.

Best way to microwave a potato without drying it out

Though reheating a potato in a microwave can be the easiest and fastest method, but it can dry out the potato if not reheated with the proper techniques.

To avoid drying out of the potatoes in the microwave the best way is to cut them into halves and wrap each half with a damp paper towel or microwavable plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out. 

Now put all the pieces of cut and wrapped halves of potatoes on a microwave-safe dish and put it in the microwave to reheat them for 2-3 minutes. It will help in preventing drying out of the potatoes by retaining their moisture levels as best as possible.

Also, prevent the baked potatoes from drying out, don’t store raw potatoes in the refrigerator. The natural starch from potato convert to sugars when stored at low temperatures. 

Always store raw potatoes in a cool dark place to avoid drying up when being microwaved.

How to reheat potatoes in microwave

Reheating Potatoes In Microwave: Final Thoughts

Using the microwave method, reheating potatoes is super easy and quickly achievable. However, it can result in dried out starch if not reheated correctly. 

Follow theses tips and steps to make your potatoes creamy and delicious every time you reheat in the microwave.

Transfer the potatoes into a glass or ceramic based microwave safe plate. It is not recommended to use regular plastic wrap or bag to microwave potatoes due to plastic melting and chemicals being absorbed into your food.

Reheat by adding a damp paper towel on top to maintain the moisture throughout the heating process. The warm steam surrounding can easily translate into moist potatoes.

Stir or rotate the potatoes so that heat distributes evenly. Always stop half way to stir and rotate to reheat all side.

After the internal temperature reaches 74 degrees Celsius or 165 degrees Fahrenheit, let it sit in the microwave for 2 minutes to let the heat distribute throughout the potato. 

Be mindful to store cooked potatoes properly so that you can safely enjoy them for the next meal. It will help you to avoid any bacteria growth that can potentially make you sick.

Whether you have leftover baked, roasted, mashed or scalloped potatoes, use these tips for reheating potatoes in the microwave the best way. Follow the tips and guidelines for perfect results each time.