Solar Cooking: Baked Potatoes

by Texas Homesteader~ 
*contains affiliate link

I came across a great deal on a huge back of potatoes recently. So I figured  I’d use my solar oven to cook up baked potatoes.

Well folks it’s still hot in Texas. And that’s not exactly the best time to throw on your heat-producing electric oven in your kitchen and bake potatoes.

Aaaaaanyway, here’s how I baked my potatoes.

I'm using my solar oven almost every day for the last few weeks - I LOVE IT! See how I cooked baked potatoes without adding any heat to my Texas kitchen. #TexasHomesteader

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In my case I was ultimately going to end up dehydrating most of the potatoes for future consumption and more compact pantry storage. But I know that you have to cook the potatoes before you can dehydrate them.

So I figured I’d kill two birds with one stone today. Enter my handy-dandy solar oven. MAN I love this thing!

I purchased the optional accessory kit when I bought my solar oven. So that oven’s been going almost every day for the past two weeks either cooking or dehydrating garden  produce. 

(for those of you asking, I have a Sun Oven* solar oven.

Preparing The Potatoes

First I scrubbed enough potatoes to fit snugly into a black enamel covered pan. Then I used the sharp point of a knife to lightly pierce each potato several times and packed them into the pan.

There were lots of potatoes I needed to get used. So I wanted to pack that pan as tightly as possible.

It was like playing potato Tetris. HA! But they all fit in quite nicely.

I'm using my solar oven almost every day for the last few weeks - I LOVE IT! See how I baked potatoes without adding any heat to my Texas kitchen. #TexasHomesteader

Now here’s the really hard part. I placed the pan of potatoes into the solar oven, covered the pan, closed & latched the solar oven’s lid, pointed the reflectors at the sun walked away. They were cooked to my liking in about 3 hours.

How’s that for easy!??

The temps inside the solar oven stayed about 300 – 350 for most of that cooking time. I adjusted the reflectors about every hour or so to help keep track of the sun. That keeps the solar oven working as efficiently as possible.

But you don’t even have to adjust the oven throughout the cooking process to closely track the sun if you don’t want to. Those potatoes will still cook up just fine. Simply cook them a smidge longer until they’re as soft as you want them.

Setting Up A Solar Oven When You Won’t Be Home

But a rule of thumb if you’re not going to be around to babysit the oven is to point the reflectors at the sun when you start your timing, then additionally rotate it about 30-degrees clockwise.

This gives you approximately 4 hours of average sun before you’ll need to realign the reflectors to keep the heat going.

Although you sacrifice some of the consistent heat inside the oven by using this averaging method, it’s often offset by the convenience of set it & forget it for 4 hours. You just need to add a little more cooking time to compensate for the slightly lower temps.  EASY!

Anyway the baked potatoes were done to my liking after about 3 hours. It doesn’t get much easier than that!

Of course we enjoyed baked potatoes with our supper that night but most of these potatoes went into the refrigerator to cool overnight to prepare them for dehydrating the next day.

I’ll be dehydrating them into Hash Browns!


Looking For More Solar-Cooking Recipes?

You can see our other SOLAR oven articles here

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13 thoughts on “Solar Cooking: Baked Potatoes

  1. Marty

    I work from home so it is easy for me to cook and heat food from my sun oven. I find you don’t need to poke holes in the potatoes in the Sun Oven because the potatoes will not explode. I don’t put oil on them, I just put very little water in the bottom of my black Granite Ware pan. I like using the 1.25″ paper binder clips to clamp the lid to the pan on both sides. That way I can pick up the pan up with the lid handle with one hand.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Don’t ya just love that Sun Oven? I know I sure love mine! I’ve never had a potato explode using any method I’ve ever cooked them – solar oven, regular oven or microwave, but I’ve always punctured the potatoes with a knife just to be sure. Good to know about not needing to poke holes in them. When using my solar oven to bake potatoes I don’t use oil or even water, they always bake up just fine. But OH I love your tip about the binder clips! I’m *totally* gonna do that next time! Thanks for the tip Marty! ~TxH~

  2. Linda

    THIS is exactly what I was looking for. Rescued about 50# from rotting on the farm and thought I’d dehydrate them, but knowing I’d need to blanch them first. I don’t have time for that nor do I want to be standing over a steam pot for 50# worth! I have my Grandmothers Sun Oven (probably one of the original designs as it sits flat) and thought I’d give it a try. I see a few mistakes and will try again. I wrapped in foil and I don’t have a small enamel pan.
    Just wanted to say, that though you posted this a long while back, I am so glad that you did. I am going to follow you so I can learn how to use my oven. So excited.
    Thank you again for a great post!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Well welcome aboard, Linda! If I didn’t have a small enamel pan for my solar-cooked baked potatoes I’d use whatever covered baking dish would fit in my solar oven. The black enamel is most efficient of course, but in different circumstances I’ve used CorningWare bakeware, small metal pots covered in foil and even my slow cooker’s covered crock in mine. Good luck and enjoy that solar oven. I know I love mine! ~TxH~

  3. Janet Vinyard

    What a great way to harness solar power! I understand that some undeveloped countries have been given sun ovens and are using them! Thanks for the inspiration! Blessings, Janet

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Outside temp isn’t very important at all Jamie – as long as the sun is shining the solar oven will heat up. I like to use it during low winds to keep the wind from damaging the reflectors but the most important thing is a sunny day with few or no clouds. I’ve baked bread in it during the chill of winter months. ~TxH~

  4. Nikki

    I’m loving this! I’m in an area with 90+ degree summers and am looking into solar cooking to avoid heating up the kitchen. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  5. Helene

    My daughter has been studying solar power. I was really interested in how you did this!

  6. Mel

    Every time I see your solar cooking I’m so jealous! I must get one before Summer 🙂

  7. Heather

    So very cool! I have wanted a solar oven for awhile now. But I literally had no clue you had to cook potatoes prior to dehydrating them. I finally got a dehydrator this year and am looking forward to trying potatoes now. 🙂

  8. Susie

    Great post. I just got a sun oven.
    It’s amazing the people who almost come to a stop to see what I have placed out in the yard. 🙂
    Thanks for sharing,
    Susie in northern NY


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