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Micro/baked potato...need help asap!

Once upon a time I knew how to do this, but I have since forgotten. How do you start a baked potato in the microwave and then finish it off in the oven? If you would, please include times and oven temp? How far should the potato go in the microwave (e.g., should a knife be able to be easily inserted)? Many thanks for your help!

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  1. Prheat oven to 375 degrees.
    Poke potato several times with tines of fork so steam can release while it's cooking in microwave.
    Place potato into microwave on microwave safe plate and cook on high for four minutes each.
    That's for large potatoes; three minutes for medium.
    Remove from microwave (use a mit or towel; they're hot) and place on baking rack in oven for about fifteen - twenty minutes.
    Test at fifteen minute with knife or fork for tenderness to determine if they're done enough for you.
    Some folks like 'em a bit firm, others like 'em soft.

    1 Reply
    1. re: todao

      The only thing I would change about that is I set the oven at 425-450. I like the outside almost crunchy.

    2. I wash a large potato, salt it, MW for 8 minutes on high - and then eat it. No oven needed. The skin is crispy. Or I peel and make mashed potatoes. And eat the crispy, salty skin.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Sam Fujisaka

        I love that idea and will do that tonight. When we do in the oven (which is almost always) we oil the potato and then rub salt on so this makes sense. Thanks, Sam.

        1. re: Sam Fujisaka

          Always do it that way if in the micro. I usually do 3-4 so 8 minutes isn't long enough. I lightly oil, just lightly, salt as you said and cook. Many times I am making something in the oven so I end up putting them in for a few minutes to finish which also works. At least 15 for 3-4 sometimes longer. But I use very large potatoes and definitely prick the skins. 8-10 is never enough but all micros and potatoes are different. And yes todao turn them over half way. I like to go 5, turn over 5 more and check, depends on the size. If cooking on the grill or oven many times I start potatoes and then just put on a top shelf, The skin gets crunchy and it doesn't hurt for the few extra minutes.

          I love mine in the micro, but do live a finish in the oven if possible, but not necessary. Two weeks ago I had 14 for dinner, I got some chicken to grill but no room on my grill for 14 potatoes so micro. Oven was busy with a baked artichoke casserole, my my fresh tomato and mushroom and eggplant dish,, and my 3 baked chickens so micro was my only hope. After every thing came out I put the potatoes in to keep warm but just for 5 or so minutes.

          1. re: kchurchill5

            Good point about potatoes and microwaves being different. High on my MW is a lot gentler than some other units I have used. For a couple of potatoes, I MW for 10 mins. I prick them with a fork first. Didn't turn, but I must try that.

            Rather than a straight baked potato, I then halve them lengthwise, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with grated parmesan and put under the broiler for 15 mins or so until the cheese turns golden brown. Skin turns out pretty crispy.


            1. re: CPla

              Good idea! How about crumbled gorgonzola?

        2. I do almost the same thing as Todao. My nuker is 23 years old, so... six to eight minutes on high (for 2 spuds-large) check to see if they're sort of soft. If yes, oven for 10-15 minutes @ 400,( with a little butter slathered on the skins... ) or on the grill for 5-10 . Make sure you prick the skins before nuking (or baking) to release the steam. adam

          1. Set the oven to 450
            Wash and poke a fork into a well salted large russet potato
            Microwave on 6 to 8 mins, depends on the size
            Then bake for 15 minutes - the time in the oven depends on the potato and how your oven works. Just drive a knife through it, and if it goes in without pressure it should be perfect. I love a creamy potato, that once I split it, I push it together and you can see the potatoe just break apart easily. It might take you a few times to get this to where you like your potato, but there is nothing worse than an undercooked hard potato.
            Butter, and mix well, then sour cream, chives and salt and pepper/
            Ok now I'm definitely having a baked potato for dinner!

            1. Thank you!!!!! Now my Sunday supper will be perfect!

              1 Reply
              1. re: super_b

                Forgot to mention:
                Turn 'em over about half way through the microwave experience so they don't overcook and develop hard spots in selective spots. Some microwaves tend to focus energy at lower mid-oven which can generate those unpleasant results.
                Even if your microwave has a carousel feature it's a good idea to roll 'em over half way through the cook time.

              2. I agree with the 400 or hotter oven. A while back I read that there's no reason to poke holes for either microwave or oven, so I no longer do. Never had one split open though they do crack a tiny bit in the microwave. I see no reason to want to get rid of the interior moisture (russet/Idaho are fairly dry anyway). I like the crisp skin and follow James Beard's recommendation of leaving them in the oven till the flesh just under the skin is getting nutty brown, which boosts the flavor of the flesh. Good thing from Martha Stewart: throw the hot spud down onto the counter - hard - once or twice. When cut open, the flesh will be fluffed up.

                7 Replies
                1. re: greygarious

                  gg, there IS a reason to let them steam. Even though it seems counter-intuitive, the more steam that escapes, the fluffier your russets become. Which is why you should never bake potatoes in foil, either. adam

                  1. re: adamshoe

                    I also read the reason for salt on the skin was one to draw the moisture to the surface which it turn helps the skin crisp up. No clue is any truth. But I like putting salt on the potato for flavor and it seems to help in the browning.

                    It seems like many variations of what makes the best potato. But I think we all agree, poke or not, micro or oven, a little salt and nothing wrapped. I went to a friends for dinner and then wrapped them. Now I love the skin, but theirs were soggy, not fluffy and not crisp skin.

                    1. re: kchurchill5

                      Ok, let me get this straight, so when salt is placed directly on a potato for baking the salt draw outs moisture but when a potato is placed in a pot of salty liquid the potato will absorb the salt and only the salt? Potatoes are magic!

                      1. re: KTinNYC

                        AS I SAID... I just read it. I have honestly have no clue what is right and what works best. I just now, seasoning the potato with salt and baking seems to work for flavor and browning. I wish I knew the exact answer.

                        If you know please tell me. It was just another article I read. There are so many and so many contradict one another. I just read it. Not clue as the actually chemical reaction and reasoning. I have not poked and they burst, others never burst. My moms never burst. I poke she says yes, grandma says no. Some salt some don't.

                        I would love to know the magic answer.

                  2. re: greygarious

                    I've had 3 explode 2 in the micro and 1 in the oven. Both time I didn't prick. I agree, why let all the good steam out but there are reasons I guess, but I have had them explode so I guess I do it just to do it. It is not fun to clean up trust me

                    1. re: kchurchill5

                      I imagine that the skins of individual potatoes vary and that a thick skinned one would be more likely to explode. I nuke a non-poked spud until it is half-cooked. They always hiss (first time I heard that I was in another room and rushed to investigate, thinking some appliance was malfunctioning). The noise means there IS some steam escaping. I've never nuked an unpoked potato until it was fully cooked. That might be the difference, too. A friend once mentioned that the potatoes she bought from a local farmstand were the best she'd ever tasted, so I went there. I mentioned to the farmer that his spuds went over so well with my friend, and he said that's because he stores/ages them first, which is not so for supermarket potatoes. The age might factor in, too.

                      1. re: greygarious

                        Interesting thanks. A friend also told me that cold vs room temp mattered. I tend to keep mine in the fridge. No other room with an apt. Maybe that too. In 20 yrs never had one exploded. Then those in a couple of years, what a flippin mess!! It sounded like an atom bomb. The one in the micro shattered the door. The oven it just stuck to everything. But recently nothing but I poke. They still come out good and I still prefer is possible finishing in the oven.

                        I always run when I hear the hiss. But lately no worries. Maybe just a few bad potatoes or who knows, just bad luck

                        Honestly I could them just about anyway you make them. I love potatoes. But yes ... when made right they are perfection.

                        My friends made this spread, simple nothing unique, but it was gorgonzola, capers, olives, scallions, roasted red peppers, diced pancetta (sauteed and drained), sun dried, basil, parsley, and pepper. Mixed and served as a topping for the potatoes. He serves this all the time. It is amazing. He usually gets oversized potatoes, nukes, then cuts in half olive oil and bakes a few like CPIa mentioned but he tops his with this spread. He has been serving this for some 10 years. He claims he Mom always made them this way. They are amazing!!