How to Cook Several Sweet Potatoes in the Microwave

Sweet potatoes are high in vitamin A and beta-carotene, unlike their starchy white counterparts. Though they seem to take forever to cook, a microwave oven allows you to cook a sweet potato in a fraction of the time it takes in a conventional oven. You can serve the microwaved sweet potatoes plain or add toppings and spices like butter, cinnamon and nutmeg. When you want to have this healthy, vitamin-packed treat at the ready, pop a few sweet potatoes in the microwave and reheat them through the week as needed.

Microwave several sweet potatoes at once to save time versus baking. (Image: Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Step 1

Scrub the sweet potatoes under cold running water to remove any dirt or harmful chemicals. Blot them dry with a paper towel.

Step 2

Place the sweet potatoes on a cutting board and cut away any woody or bruised sections of the sweet potato with a sharp knife.

Step 3

Poke holes all over each sweet potato with a fork to allow the steam to escape when cooking.

Step 4

Place the sweet potatoes on a microwave-safe plate. Space the sweet potatoes an equal distance apart so they cook evenly.

Step 5

Set the microwave on the high setting and cook the potatoes for about 3 minutes for up to two potatoes, 5-1/2 minutes for three to four potatoes and 9 minutes for five or more potatoes.

Step 6

Flip the sweet potatoes over with tongs about halfway through the desired cooking time. Reset the microwave timer and cook the sweet potatoes for another 3 to 9 minutes, depending on the number of potatoes.

Step 7

Push a fork into the center of the potatoes to see if the potatoes are soft to the center. Return the sweet potatoes to the microwave and cook in 1 to 2 minute intervals until all potatoes are soft to the center. Small potatoes usually finish cooking before larger potatoes, so remove the small potatoes and continue to cook the large potatoes until done.

Step 8

Take the sweet potatoes out of the microwave and allow them to rest for about 5 minutes. The potatoes will continue to soften during the rest period.

Things You'll Need

  • Paper towel

  • Cutting board

  • Microwave-safe plate


Microwave oven cooking times may vary. If you know you have a powerful microwave that tends to cook foods fast, reduce the cooking time by a few minutes. Likewise, if your microwave tends to require more cooking time, increase the time by a few minutes.

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