The Microwave Hack That Makes Stale Tortilla Chips Crispy Again

When it comes to chowing down on an epic plate of loaded nachos or digging into fresh salsa and creamy guacamole dip, only the freshest and crispiest tortilla chips will do. However, if all you have on hand is an opened bag of stale chips, fret not. Before you throw them out, there's a simple hack for reviving those unappetizing pieces of fried corn tortillas and it involves nuking them in the microwave to get them crispy again.

Leave it to the world of TikTok to figure out this chip-saving trick that proves how easy it is to give your stale tortilla chips a nice crisp and all with just the push of your microwave button. Since chips tend to absorb moisture once the bag is opened, heating them in the microwave can help dry them out and restore them to their perfect crunchy form.

All you have to do is place a paper towel on a plate, pour the chips on top, and toss them into the microwave to cook for 30-second intervals until they have reached that satisfyingly crispy texture. Just be sure not to microwave them too long, otherwise you may end up accidentally burning your chips.

You can microwave other stale snacks, too

The microwave certainly works wonders when it comes to bringing a stale bag of leftover restaurant chips back to life — such as Chipotle's salty lime wonders. However, the best part about this trick is that it doesn't just work on tortilla chips. You can restore an enticing crunch to crackers, pretzels, and even a variety of other types of chips, such as Takis and Cheetos.

Don't own a microwave? Fortunately, just about any type of cooker will do the trick, too, from toaster ovens to air fryers. If you go the route of the latter, spray a thin layer of oil over your chips or other snacks before cooking them for about two to three minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

You can even opt for an easy oven hack to revive stale snacks, which involves preheating your oven to 225 degrees Fahrenheit, spreading out your snack on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and then placing it in the oven to heat up. Just be sure to check the food every few minutes or so to ensure it doesn't burn.

Prevent your chips from going stale in the first place

Whether you opt to heat your soggy chips in a microwave or the oven, the good news is that they won't have to wind up in the trash can. However, there are a few simple ways you can help ensure your favorite snacks don't go stale as quickly in the first place. One of the best ways you can keep them fresh is by ensuring they're stored in a dry place — totally away from any moisture.

From tortilla chips to potato chips and everything in between, you also want to make sure the bag they're contained in remains tightly sealed. Opting for a chip clip is great; however, it's best to transfer the contents into a separate, airtight container that you can properly close after opening, such as a ziplock bag. 

Also, be sure to minimize the amount of time the container is left open. For instance, instead of eating chips straight out of the bag, you should pour out the amount you want into a separate bowl so that you can reseal the bag immediately. This way, they can retain their lip-smacking crunch for longer.