Can You Microwave Sweet Potatoes?

Although sweet potatoes cooked in the microwave can save you heaps of time, you do need to follow a tried-and-tested method if you want to have fluffy, soft sweet potatoes that are cooked to perfection:

How to Microwave Sweet Potatoes

The secret to success in cooking sweet potatoes in the microwave is the timing. The method below is for cooking one sweet potato but you can cook more than this. For every sweet potato, you add into the microwave add about two minutes of cooking time.

Let’s take a look at how to cook sweet potato in the microwave.

  1. Wash and Dry
    Wash your sweet potatoes thoroughly and pat dry with a clean kitchen towel.
  2. Prick Skins
    Prick the skin of the potato with a fork several times. This is to stop the potatoes from building up pressure and bursting while it cooks.
  3. Place Onto a Plate
    Put the sweet potato onto a microwave-safe plate and pop it into the microwave.
  4. Microwave for 5-10 Minutes
    Cook it for about five to ten minutes depending on the size.
  5. Rotate
    Rotate the potato and cook it for about five minutes.
  6. Check for Doneness
    Check to see if the potato is cooked by testing it with a knife. If it isn’t cooked pop it back in the microwave for a minute or two. Keep repeating this process leaving only a minute or two in the microwave at a time until the sweet potato is cooked.

3 Tips for Microwaving Sweet Potatoes

If you want to have the greatest success when microwaving sweet potatoes then take these three tips on board:

  • Finish in an Oven – Microwaving your sweet potato won’t result in crispy skin. The potato will be delicious and fluffy on the inside but the skins can end up a little chewy. If you want a crispy potato you can always pop them into a pre-heated oven for a few minutes to finish them off after microwaving. You will still save yourself a lot of time using this method.
  • Prick the Skins – Always prick the skins before microwaving. If you forget the potato could burst all over the microwave!
  • Try Mashing – Mashed sweet potato is the best type of potato to use a microwave for. The inside of the potato will be so fluffy and delicious it is easy to turn into a tasty and creamy mash.

Microwave Mashed Sweet Potatoes

Advantages of Microwaved Sweet Potatoes

There are plenty of reasons why you should opt for cooking sweet potatoes in the microwave versus a normal oven:

  1. Super Quick
    It is so much faster to cook sweet potatoes in a microwave rather than in an oven. You can reduce cooking time by up to forty-five minutes which is a considerable amount of time.
  2. Healthier
    It is thought that cooking veg in the microwave is a much healthier way of cooking. Because they are usually cooked quicker the vegetables don’t lose as much of their nutrition making it much better for you. You also don’t need to use any high-calorie fats in order to cook the potatoes so it is better for your waistline too.
  3. Fluffiest Flesh
    There are few better ways to ensure the flesh of the sweet potato is fluffy and light. It is perfect for mashing when cooked in a microwave.

Disadvantages of Microwaved Sweet Potatoes

Unfortunately, it’s not all good news. There are a handful of drawbacks that are worth being aware of:

  1. Don’t Expect Crispy Skin
    When you cook sweet potatoes in a microwave you don’t get crispy skin. If anything, the skin is rubbery and chewy in texture which isn’t to everybody’s tastes.
  2. Limited Space
    One disadvantage of using a microwave to cook sweet potatoes is the space. Most of us have fairly small microwaves and you can only fit one or two potatoes in at a time. This is perfect if you are only cooking small amounts of sweet potatoes but if you want larger portions it may be better to use the oven as usual.

How to Reheat Sweet Potatoes in the Microwave

You can reheat sweet potatoes easily using a microwave. All you need to do is pop the sweet potatoes onto a microwaveable plate or if they are mashed use a bowl instead. Put this into the microwave for two to three minutes and then check it is hot.

If you are reheating sweet potato mash then give it a stir to break up any clumps. You may need to put it back into the microwave for a little longer. Heat for thirty-second intervals and check the potato in between until it is hot enough. Then you can remove it from the microwave and serve it with a meal.

How to Defrost Sweet Potatoes in the Microwave

You can defrost your sweet potatoes using a couple of methods. One method is perfect if you have time to plan ahead. All you need to do is take the sweet potatoes out of the freezer and pop them into the fridge overnight.

If you need to speed up the process and thaw out your sweet potatoes a little quicker then you can do this in the microwave. Put them onto a plate that is suitable for the microwave and pop them into the microwave on a defrost setting for about two to three minutes.

Check to see if they are thawed, if not pop them back in for a minute then check again. Keep repeating this process until the sweet potatoes are fully thawed.

Final Summary

You could cook sweet potatoes using traditional methods in the oven but it is far quicker and easier to pop them in the microwave instead. It takes a fraction of the time and it makes them perfect for mashing.

The only snag is the skins. If you want to eat the skins and have them crispy then you do need to use an oven instead.