Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Oct 11, 2006 08:39 PM

Found a way to refresh stale tortilla chips

I'm sure this is not going to be revelatory for most of you expert cooks. Also, I'm sure someone's figured this out already, but:

...if you want to refresh stale tortilla chips to its formerly crunchy, brittle state; use the microwave!

Lay out a few chips on a paper towel, microwave on high for 30 seconds (watch out for scorching).**

During this time, marvel at how the moisture (which makes chips stale) is evaporated as if by magic by your oven.

When it's done, you'll get warm chips ready for dipping in a cool bowl of salsa.

BTW, I don't recommend you try this on a Dorito.

** NOTE: You need the kind of microwave that has a rotating turntable, or else you will be very sorry in a my-science-project-burned-the-school-down kind of way.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I've never tried the microwave for this purpose, but thanks for the tip!

    You can also do this in a toaster oven. Spread chips in a single layer and heat at around 350 for 3-4 minutes, being careful not to let them brown. Brings them back to being perfectly crispy.

    1. Makes sense because that's what microwave ovens do, remove moisture from foods.

      1. I would think it would depend on the thickness of the chip. The microwave would probably make the chip tough and leathery, right? A toaster oven on low should remove moisture just as well without affecting the texture.

        1 Reply
        1. re: interference

          You'd think! But my results, on a moderately thick chip, has been consistently crunchy and brittle and crisp. I dare say crunchier than it was originally!

        2. I use the oven for this (I'm "microwave adverse"). But, I might just try it for "experiment-sake" :).

          1. One of my favorite things, which incidentally prevents staling, is to keep all snack foods in the freezer. Pretzels, chips, tortilla chips, you name it, I keep it in the freezer. It just seems crispier somehow. Anyone else do this?