There are over 200 types of potatoes in the world, but baby potatoes are certainly the most adorable and easiest to incorporate into a range of meals. This is mainly because they are one of the few potatoes available all year round.
Baby potatoes are essentially immature regular potatoes. As such, they are noticeably sweeter than mature potatoes and are creamier because of the lack of starch. Does this difference make baby potatoes the perfect potato to cook in the microwave?
To microwave baby potatoes, stab them with a fork, then pop them into a microwave-safe dish with a few knobs of butter. Microwave for 10 minutes, basting with butter midway through.
How to Microwave Baby Potatoes
Very little is needed to microwave baby potatoes, yet you can yield the same delicious results. No matter if you are a skilled or beginner chef, follow the method below for the best baby potatoes cooked using a microwave:
- Wash The Potatoes
No matter where you buy your baby potatoes, wash them well before you cook them using warm water.
- Pierce Holes
Using a fork, gently pierce several holes into each of your baby potatoes. The more holes there are for steam to escape, the less likely the potatoes will explode in the microwave.
- Place In A Bowl
Put all your baby potatoes into a deep enough bowl or plate to prevent the potatoes from rolling around your microwave.
- Cover In Butter
You could just cook the baby potatoes plain. But covering them in 1 – 2 tablespoons of butter and your seasonings of choice will make all the difference.
Set your microwave to 75% power and microwave your baby potatoes for 5 minutes.
- Recover In Butter
If you have chosen to butter the potatoes, remove the potatoes from the microwave and use a spoon to redistribute the melted butter back over the potatoes. This will stop them from drying out and make them even more flavourful.
- Microwave (Again)
Place the potatoes back in the microwave and allow them to finish cooking for a further 5 – 7 minutes. Or until soft.
How to Microwave Baby Potatoes Successfully
Baby potatoes are different in look, texture, and taste to a regular potato. They can also be more expensive, so when you are on a budget, it is often safer to buy regular potatoes in case the meal goes wrong.
Microwaving baby potatoes can often add to this wariness as it is not the typical method used to cook potatoes.
But you can save yourself a lot of stress by using these tips to ensure you successfully microwave baby potatoes every time:
- Cut Up The Potatoes For Quicker Results – Baby potatoes are already considerably smaller than regular potatoes (hence their name). But if you are in a rush and don’t want to wait 10 minutes for the potatoes to cook, cut them in half after washing them.
- Use A Toothpick – Poking holes in the potatoes and allowing heat to escape will save you a lot of mess. But if you find that using a fork to make the holes is too aggressive for the size of your baby potatoes, you can use a toothpick or kebab skewer instead.
Why You Should Microwave Baby Potatoes
Due to their smaller size and their creamier texture, baby potatoes are one of the few potato varieties that does well when cooked in a microwave.
There are several benefits to making the microwave your go-to cooking method the next time you are craving the sweetness of a baby potato. Such as:
Little Work, Lots of Taste
Using an oven to cook baby potatoes can put some people off from experimenting with different herbs and seasoning for fear of ruining the potatoes thoroughly.
It is much easier to burn the potatoes or dry them out when cooking them in the oven, so putting effort into their taste could be waste of time.
However, with a microwave, very few things can go wrong when cooking potatoes. So feel free to experiment with a range of flavours and combinations without the fear of the potatoes tasting gross.
The last thing you want to do on a hot summer day is have your oven cooking away for an hour. Microwaving your baby potatoes takes less than 15 minutes compared to the average 25 minutes when cooked in the oven.
Likewise, there is very little washing up to do when cooking baby potatoes in a microwave, saving you even more time that you can spend relaxing instead of in a hot kitchen.
Why You Shouldn’t Microwave Baby Potatoes
If you only want a quick side dish to bulk up your main meal, then the issues that may come from microwaving baby potatoes may not be problematic enough to outweigh the benefits.
However, if you are planning to service baby potatoes as a key part of your meal, then you should keep these few things in mind:
Each microwave operates at a different power level, producing slightly different heats.
Depending on your microwave, your baby potatoes may turn too soft and mushy or remain too hard to be pleasant.
Like regular potatoes, baby potatoes can develop a crispy skin if roasted. But this crispness is practically impossible to achieve when they are cooked in the microwave. So if you like your potato skins crispy, stick with the oven.
Microwaving Baby Potatoes FAQs
If you have specific questions about microwaving baby potatoes, then these might help. If they don’t, feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of the page.
Yes, you can use the microwave to part-cook baby potatoes before roasting them. This will help you to get crisp skin on the outside. Microwave for 3 minutes until the centre has softened.
Yes, all varieties and colours of baby potatoes can be microwaved. They will cook in the microwave within 10 minutes, especially when basted in plenty of butter.
Acacia may be a freelance writer by day, but they are a food fanatic by night. They are always trying out new recipes or finding different ways to elevate classical dishes. But their biggest culinary aim is to educate others on the basics of the kitchen so that they too can enjoy delicious food.