No Oven, No Problem: Healthy, Affordable Potato Dishes for the Air Fryer, Microwave and Toaster

Attention all dorm dwellers, tiny apartment residents, or anyone who's just over their oven, we've got healthy, affordable potato recipes that don't require a kitchen! Just plug in your air fryer, microwave or toaster to prepare a meal that's sure to please.

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Air Fryer Potatoes with Green Goddess Dip (Photo: Business Wire)

"With the new school year starting, everyone's looking for nutritious, easy and affordable food," said Chef R.J. Harvey, director of culinary at Potatoes USA and a registered dietitian. "Potatoes to the rescue! They're a nutrient-dense vegetable at a great value, and you can cook them just about any way imaginable."

Nutritionally, a medium (5.3 ounce) skin-on potato has more vitamin C than a tomato (30% of daily value (DV)) and more potassium than a banana (15% DV). Potatoes are also naturally fat-, cholesterol- and sodium-free, and they have fiber to help you feel full longer.

Here are some of Chef R.J.'s favorite no-oven potato hacks:

For the Air Fryer: Air fryers heat up fast and help you get a crispy potato. Have a fiesta with Air Fryer Potato Quesadillas (with a guest appearance from the microwave to prep the filling). How about pizza night with more potassium using Air Fryer Parmesan Potato Pizza Crusts? In a snacking mood? Try Air Fryer Potatoes with Green Goddess Dip. Or check out even more air fryer recipes on PotatoGoodness.com.

For the Microwave: The humble microwave can revolutionize the way you cook potatoes. Here are some pro tips:

  • Choosing the right potato is critical. For classic baked potatoes, which are light and fluffy on the inside, a Russet potato is perfect for the job!
  • When microwaving more than one potato, try to select potatoes of the same size so they cook evenly.
  • Pierce the potatoes lightly across the surface with a fork or the tip of a knife.
  • Potatoes cooked in the microwave should have some space between them to ensure even cooking.
  • Start potatoes in the microwave for 5 minutes. If the potatoes are not fork-tender, cook in additional one-minute increments until a fork or knife has little to no resistance when inserted.
  • Once tender, lightly oil the skin with a neutral oil (vegetable, canola, avocado oil, etc.).
  • The skin can be crisped up in a toaster over or air fryer set to 450°F for 3-5 minutes.
  • Place cheese on top. Slice potatoes into a microwave-safe dish and cover with a solid layer of cheese, including low-fat varieties, to upgrade microwave potatoes into a classic gratin.
  • You can add to potatoes' 3 grams of plant-based protein by including a protein like rotisserie chicken to help make a complete meal.

For the Toaster Oven: Put your toaster oven to work on a vegetable by making baked potatoes. First, preheat to 400°F. Wash your potatoes and coat them with a bit of oil. Once preheated, place the potatoes directly on the center rack. One medium potato will take about 45 minutes to cook. Want to step up your flavor without adding a lot of calories? Cooking Light has some great suggestions, including:

  • Broccoli, red pepper flakes and parmesan cheese;
  • Canned chili-seasoned kidney beans, red onions and reduced-fat cheddar;
  • Rotisserie chicken, BBQ sauce and green onions;
  • Ham and brie; and
  • Salsa, Monterey Jack cheese and green onions.

"Potatoes are the perfect vehicle to deliver flavor, and anybody can cook them with just a few simple tools," said Harvey. "If your access to kitchen facilities is limited and you want a nutritious, plant-based meal, you really can't beat the potato in your air fryer, microwave or toaster oven."

About Potatoes USA

Potatoes USA was established in 1971 by a group of potato farmers to promote the benefits of eating potatoes. Today, as the largest vegetable commodity board and the marketing organization for the 2,000 potato farming families operating in the United States, we are proud to be recognized as an innovator in the produce industry. We provide culinary potato inspiration to key audiences, as well as useful tools, education, and support. Through effective market-driven strategies that focus on the greatest opportunities, Potatoes USA is proving that, no matter where the customer lives, U.S. potatoes offer a world of possibilities.

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