Cooking Tips
Grilling Potatoes? Jump-Start Them In The Microwave.
Your trusty microwave is the key to perfect grilled potatoes.
07-27-2021
Camila Chaparro

Grilling season is upon us, so fire up your grill and throw on some . . . potatoes? 

Yes, you heard me right: grilled potatoes! Soft and creamy on the inside, crisp and toasty on the outside with just a touch of smoky char, grilled potatoes have become my family’s favorite way to eat America’s favorite vegetable. 

While I’m no novice when it comes to grilling vegetables, I hadn’t ever considered trying potatoes. The high direct heat of the grillwhile excellent for adding char and smoky caramelized flavors, and for quickly cooking my favorite tender veggiesseemed like the wrong move for dense, starchy potatoes. Wouldn’t they get burnt to a crisp before they cooked through? And wouldn’t they be a pain to cook, either rolling around if left whole, or falling through the grates if sliced? 

But while developing recipes for our cookbook Five-Ingredient Dinners, I learned a few tips that will make grilled potatoes your family’s favorite too. 

Buy the Book

100+ FAST, FLAVORFUL MEALS Five-Ingredient Dinners

Find delicious and wholesome meals that let you leave the laundry list of ingredients behind.

 

First, let’s start with the size and type of potatoes. Similarly sized small yellow or red potatoesabout 1½ to 2 inches in diameterare what you want. Sliced in half, these little guys lay perfectly flat across the grill grates with little risk of falling through, and they won't roll around.

But hold onbefore you head outside to the grill, we need to give them a jump start.

Enter my favorite secret weapon: the microwave. (I wrote about a few of the fun and lesser-known things you can do with your microwave here.) Starting dense vegetables such as squash or potatoes in the microwave before transferring them to the oven or grill is a tried-and-true test kitchen method to significantly cut down subsequent cooking times. Microwaving the potatoes for about 6 minutes means that in just 10 minutes on the grill, we’ve got soft and creamy insides and perfectly golden-brown and crispy outsides. 

So fire up that grill, but zap those spuds first!

@testkitchen

Easy grilled potatoes from our Five-Ingredient Dinners cookbook! #fiveingredients #grilledpotatoes #potato #potatoes #testkitchen #howto #grillin

♬ Suns - TikTok Luv.res

Grilled Vegetable Platter with Pesto

From Five-Ingredient Dinners

Serves 4
Total time: 40 minutes

1½ pounds small (1‐ to 2-inch-wide) red or yellow potatoes, halved
1½ pounds broccolini, trimmed and stems halved lengthwise
3 red bell peppers, stemmed, seeded, and halved so peppers lay flat
4 ounces feta or goat cheese, crumbled (1 cup)
½ cup pesto

You’ll also need extra-virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper for this recipe.

1. Toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon olive oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and teaspoon pepper in bowl. Cover and microwave until potatoes offer slight resistance when pierced with tip of paring knife, about 6 minutes, stirring halfway through. Drain, if necessary, then toss with additional 1 tablespoon oil.

2. Toss broccolini with 2 tablespoons oil, ¼ teaspoon salt, and teaspoon pepper. Rub peppers all over with 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with teaspoon salt and pinch pepper.

3. Grill peppers and potatoes over medium fire until well browned and tender, 10 to 12 minutes, flipping as needed. Transfer grilled vegetables to cutting board and tent loosely with aluminum foil. Add broccolini to now-empty grill and grill until charred and tender, 8 to 10 minutes, flipping as needed.

4. Slice peppers into 1-inch-wide strips then arrange potatoes, sliced peppers, and broccolini on serving platter. Sprinkle with feta and serve with pesto.


These grilling recipes are among our all-time favorites. Start a free trial to access them plus all of our other rigorously tested, reliable recipes and reviews.