DIY Microwave Potato Bag
When I was in my early 20’s my grandma gave me the gift of a microwave potato bag that a friend of hers had made. I thought it was just about the strangest thing ever. A bag to cook potatoes in the microwave? But after I started using it – I realized just how darn handy it could be. Plus, the potatoes taste like they were baked in the oven for 45 minutes – when in reality it only took about 5 minutes in the microwave.
The microwave potato bag I’ve been using for the last 15 years or so has gotten a little worn out. So I decided it was time to try my hand at making a new one. And I have to say I’m really tickled with how it turned out. This little bag took about 30 minutes to make and it would make a fabulous gift for a college student, rushed new mom, new homeowner, hostess, you name it!
- 100% cotton fabric (about 1/2 yard)
- 100% cotton thread (in a corresponding color)
- 100% cotton batting
- sewing machine
I’m sure you’ve noticed a 100% cotton theme with this list. The reason for it is that if you were to use anything with rayon or polyester (as so many fabrics, threads, and battings are made of) you’d risk it melting in the microwave. Melted plastic on my dinner is not something I enjoy. So stick with cotton and you’ll never have that problem.
Step 1 – Cut Out Fabric and Batting
First, cut out your fabric and batting. This project is super simple because you need two pieces of cotton fabric measuring 9″ X 20″ and one of the batting also measuring 9″ X 20″. It’s going to look like a big long rectangle when you’re done cutting.
Here’s one of the completed pieces of cotton fabric.
The cotton batting should be the same dimensions as the two pieces of cotton fabric.
Step 2 – Sew Rectangle
Next, we’ll layer our materials – two of the cotton batting right sides facing together and the cotton batting placed over them both.
Now, sew around 3 complete edges and some of the fourth edge (leave about 3 inches open in the middle of the edge) with about a 1/2″ seam allowance. If you’re comfortable with less or more seam allowance than that – go for it. This is a very loose and forgiving project. The reason we leave those 3 inches open is that we need to turn the bag right side out.
Here’s what you’ll have when you’ve done that. The arrow shows where I left my 3ish inches open. Also, notice that I trimmed the corners just a tiny bit to reduce bulk when the bag is turned right side out. Just be careful not to cut any of your seams.
And here’s a shot of the bag right side out.
After the bag is right side out – you can turn that last little 3 inch area inwards and sew across to close the bag up.
Step 3 – Make Large Fold
Now that we have our big rectangle – we can create our two folds. It’s easiest to start with the larger fold. Fold the bag over about 7 1/2″ and pin. Sew this fold in place on the two outer edges (leave the middle bit open so that you can insert your potato in it.)
Here’s the bag with the large fold stitched up on either side.
Step 4 – Make Small Fold
Now that the larger fold is stitched down – we’ll fold the other side down into a smaller fold. The trick to this is that you want to fold it just slightly over the larger fold (no more than 1″). That way you’ve created a perfect “potato pocket”.
I also stitched diagonally across each corner of the smaller fold since that will get a lot of pulling when you’re stuffing potatoes in the pocket before cooking them.
This is the handy little tag I attach to my potato bag when not in use so I can remember the directions (it also works great when you’re gifting this bag!)
And here’s the completed product!
Here’s the baked potato tag in case you want to use the same one I made (right click and save it to your computer.)