Why Do Potatoes Explode in Microwaves?

Why Do Potatoes Explode in Microwaves?

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Why Do Potatoes Explode in Microwaves?

Potatoes are a group of starchy tubers that originated in the region now known as Peru, but today they grow worldwide.

Potatoes are a staple food, and many popular dishes depend on potatoes as their key ingredient. They have many uses, and you can cook in savory or sweet dishes.

Potatoes are one of the world’s most-produced and consumed crops.

In 2010, the world’s potato production was approximately 4.5 billion tonnes, roughly equal to that of the United States, with China producing nearly half of the world’s potatoes.

Why Do Potatoes Explode in Microwaves?

The heat from the microwaves causes the water molecules to move quickly, making them rub against other water molecules as they try to escape. This rubbing motion creates friction, and that friction leads to pressure. When the water inside the potato builds up enough pressure, it forces the potato’s skin to burst open.

Potatoes explode in the microwave because microwaves cook food by heating water molecules inside the food.

This bursting of potato skin doesn’t happen with all microwaves, just those with strong magnetic fields.

There is also evidence that the type of potato used will influence how likely it’s to explore while in the microwave.

For example, russet potatoes are more likely to explode than reds and yellows.

This is because russet potatoes are thicker than other types and therefore have more water inside them, which heats faster in the microwave.

Why Are My Potatoes Exploding?

Your potatoes are exploding because they are bursting out of their skins, and if you want to prevent this from happening, you need to slow down how much they are cooking.

Boiled, roasted, or mashed potatoes can be delicious side dishes that bring a wonderful texture and flavor to your plate.

But sometimes, because of the way they’re cooked, your potatoes will burst open when they cook and turn into an impossible-to-eat mess on your stovetop.

To prevent this from happening, you need to slow down how much they are cooking.

You can use two things to help prevent your potatoes from bursting as they cook: salt or ice. What you apply depends on which method you’re using to cook your potatoes.

The first thing is saltwater brine, a solution of salt and water that absorbs moisture and makes the food more porous.

This keeps the food moist and prevents it from opening when it cooks.

To Use A Saltwater Brine:

  • Fill a large pot with water, cover, and boil over high heat until the water comes to a boil.
  • Once it begins to boil, add enough salt to taste like the ocean.
  • Add your potatoes and cover them again.
  • After that, if you are using the oven method to cook your potatoes, set the temperature to 200 degrees Fahrenheit and let them continue to cook for at least 45 minutes.

To keep your potatoes moist, you can add a simple stick of butter that will help the saltwater brine to pull the moisture out of your potatoes.

As a result, they won’t burst while they cook.

When using the microwave, put an absorbent paper beneath the potato before cooking it. Then put them in a single layer and cook for at least 6 minutes before adding more potatoes.

The paper will absorb the moisture from the cooked potatoes, keeping your potatoes from exploding.

If you’re using the microwave method, cook one pound at a time, ensuring to seal and turn them halfway through cooking.

The goal is to have your potatoes cook in less than 10 minutes.

However, if you are using the oven method, don’t worry about how many potatoes you’re going to cook at a time.

If you’re cooking two pounds of potatoes simultaneously, you should fully cook your potatoes after 30 minutes. If not, they will continue to cook as they cool down.

After they cool off, you take them out of the oven let them cool down again before placing them in an airtight container.

Do You Have To Poke Holes In Potatoes Before Microwaving?

Yes. First, dry the potato. Then use a fork to poke it a few times, then poke it again. Then place in microwave for 4 minutes or until cooked through.

You can test the inside to see if it’s cooked through and remove it from the plate.

You might need to remove the hot potato from the microwave if there is too much condensation outside, making your potatoes soggy.

Benefits of poking holes in potatoes before microwaving

  • Poke holes allow the potatoes to cook faster.
  • They also allow steam to escape when cooking.
  • Align the cells to more efficiently absorb water when microwaving; you will want as much water as possible absorbed by the potato so it doesn’t come out soggy.
  • Poke holes in the skin before microwaving potatoes with skin on will keep the skin from coming apart when cooking.

Why Are My Potatoes Still Hard In The Oven?

Your potatoes are still hard in the oven because they weren’t oven-ready to begin with.

You should peel, chop, and bunch the potatoes up on the baking tray and then sprinkle them with oil or butter.

You can also sprinkle salt or pepper on your potatoes if you want a little more flavor.

If you do not cut the potatoes correctly, the potato will not cook properly in the oven.

The reason is that when you chop the potato up, there are tiny holes created in the fleshy part of it.

These tiny holes will allow the escape of steam while baking and will cook your potato perfectly.

If you don’t cut your potato correctly and it’s still hard after 45 minutes in the oven, you may have undercooked it.

You can try again by using a fork to ensure that your potato has softened.

If you think your potatoes will be too soft in the middle, you can always stick a toothpick through them to ensure they don’t overcook.

Why Shouldn’t You Microwave Potatoes?

You should not microwave potatoes because it alters the nutritional content of the food.

In potatoes, the minerals, such as magnesium and iron, deplete when exposed to high temperatures.

In addition, cooking potatoes in a microwave leads to an increase in certain compounds called oxylipins, which can cause inflammation and lead to heart disease.

Microwaves emit radiation harmful to your body and contribute to cancer growth. Finally, heating food at high temperatures creates different chemicals that produce carcinogenic substances.

However, this does not mean that you should avoid all types of microwaves. Microwaves have been used to cook food healthily.

For example, microwaves are used to heat breast milk, which is considered healthy for babies because it’s free of bacteria and reduces the risk of infection.

In addition, microwaves(Amazon Link) can help you lose weight, as proven by studies conducted with obese people who were instructed to follow an exercise program using a microwave.

As a result, after exercising for an hour every day, people lost weight, and their cholesterol decreased.

Fortunately, you can cook your potatoes in other ways that don’t affect their nutritional content.

You can also eat boiled or baked potatoes without removing the skin because they are full of nutrients.

Also, eating potatoes will reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.

That’s why, if you are craving a crunchy potato, don’t be afraid to eat them as they were made for that.

Does Microwaving Potatoes Destroy Nutrients?

Yes. It destroys nutrients. However, microwaving can also benefit the food by using less cooking time.

Microwaving potatoes means cooking them in a microwave oven, a type of radiation that cooks the food more evenly and quickly.

It’s better than boiling or baking because it heats from the inside out and leaves no cold spots.

Microwaving uses a combination of pulsed microwave radiation and water to reach up to 450°C.

This potato absorbs this energy, disrupting its cell structure and causing it to heat rapidly inside.

Does Microwaving Potatoes Destroy Lectins?

This is a common misconception that has been circulating for decades. When you microwave potatoes, the water inside the potato migrates out and leaves pockets of air.

This doesn’t change or destroy the lectins you can find in raw potatoes if you don’t cook them first.

Also, some research suggests that microwaving food may preserve nutrients such as vitamin C compared to boiling or using other cooking methods where the food comes into contact with more water.

Your best option is to always cook your potatoes thoroughly before consuming them. Boiling, baking, or sauteing are all great ways to cook your potatoes.

However, microwaving your food is not the doctor’s recommendation for health reasons.

Steps to Microwave a Baked Potato

Baked potatoes are one of life’s simple pleasures, but when they’re hot, they’re practically insufferable.

Microwaving a baked potato is the easy solution to save yourself the torture. But how does one go about cooking a potato in the microwave?

Some tips for preparing your baked potato-

Grease the inside of your oven or microwave with butter or cooking spray. The butter will help it to brown and crispen.

Hand-wash your potato under cool water. Be sure to scrub all the dirt off, but don’t peel the potato.

Poke holes in the potato with a fork. This is essential to proper microwave preparation because it allows steam to escape.

Preventing you from getting scalded by the hot insides of your baked potato when you take a bite into it.

Microwave on high until tender (approximately seven minutes).

What you will need:

  • Potato
  • Butter or Cooking Spray
  • Paper Towel to Mop Up the Potatoes before you eat them (optional)

Here is what you do:

Wash the potato thoroughly with cool water and scrub the dirt off, but don’t peel the potato yet

Place a bit of butter or cooking oil on the bottom of your oven dish or microwave dish and put your potato in it.

Pierce large holes in the potato with a fork. This will release steam and prevent it from making you burn yourself later when eating it.

Cook at high temperature for five to seven minutes, or until tender on the inside and browned outside.

Be sure not to overcook the potato by leaving it for too long, or your potato will be soggy and gross.

Carefully open the oven door and remove the potato from the oven.

Mop up any excess oil in the bottom of your dish using a paper towel. This will help keep your potatoes from getting soggy if you choose to eat them later.

Why Is My Potato Shaking In The Microwave?

Your potato is shaking in the microwave because of the exposed electromagnetic waves. These waves cause the water molecules found in your microwaved potato to vibrate and produce heat energy.

This phenomenon exists in all types of cooking, from boiling water to frying eggs.

By learning about what causes it, you can adjust your cooking methods for a more consistent result with better flavor and consistency.

Microwave ovens produce electromagnetic waves that travel at the speed of light (186,000 miles per second).

These waves can cause all objects to vibrate as they pass through, including water or other foods, even metals like aluminum or copper, showing this effect.

Your microwave oven(Amazon Link) can influence the amount of vibration in your potato as it cooks because of the amplitude of the vibration and its direction in space.

The same effect occurs in a boiling pot of water. When food and water heat together, this vibration creates small bubbles (called cavitation).

The bubbles break and collapse, and the released energy heats food like a miniature nuclear fission reactor.

Food loses moisture and nutrients because of cavitation, so you should take care when cooking with a bit of water.


Microwaved potatoes are safe, healthy, and delicious.

Microwaving a potato for the time recommended by the manufacturer is a great way to enjoy a delicious, nutritious snack without risking the health benefits of potatoes.

As with any other food preparation method, over-cooking can drastically affect nutrients and reduce vitamin content.

It’s important not to overcook your microwaved potatoes to ensure you are getting the most out of your spuds.


Hi! I' am Tom. I was a manager in one of the biggest stores for over 10 Years, am also an SEO by night. I don't like to call myself a blogger; they are very analytical, do email marketing, and know all SEO stuff. I faced many questions from customers about different products, and there was hardly any help on the internet. After learning all the things about these products as a manager the hard way, I decided to start a blog and help other people.

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