How to Select and Store Avocados

You have likely read about the amazing health benefits of the avocado. But it's important that you know how to properly select and store this unique fruit.

Selecting Avocados

Most avocados come to market quite hard, so that they are less likely to bruise. As long as you don't plan to use it immediately, a firm, but not rock-hard avocado is a good choice.

Check the avocado for soft dark spots that are signs of bruising. Tan patches that are sometimes found on the skin, however, have no effect on the fruit inside.

If you do plan to use the avocado immediately, you will need to be more selective. A ripe avocado will yield to gentle pressure. If your finger leaves a dent in the fruit, or if the skin seems too large for the flesh, the avocado is overripe.

Storing Avocados

An unripe avocado will ripen on the counter in a few days. To speed the process, put the avocado in a paper bag along with either an apple or a banana. The ethylene gas released from the apple or banana will hasten the ripening of the avocado.

If you have an avocado that is perfectly ripe but you are not quite ready to use it, put it in the refrigerator. The chill will slow the ripening considerably. A refrigerated avocado can last up to 10 days. Never store an unripe avocado in the refrigerator as it will never soften properly if it is chilled.

Cut avocado will begin to turn brown as the flesh is exposed to air. When you are using only a portion of the fruit, you can store the remainder for several days. Leave the skin on and the pit in place. To diminish discoloration, brush the exposed area with either lemon or lime juice and wrap in plastic wrap.

Freezing Avocados

Freezing whole or sliced avocados is not recommended since freezing will alter the texture. However, pureed avocado mixed with a small amount of lemon or lime juice (1 tablespoon per avocado) will freeze for up to 5 months. Store the puree in an air-tight container.

Pureed avocado is preferable to mashed since the lemon or lime juice is more evenly distributed in the puree. Pureed avocado may be used in guacamole, dressings, or sandwich spread.

Puree may be frozen using ice cube trays. Once frozen, remove from the trays and store in labeled freezer bags for up to 5 months.

And here is my favorite tool for cutting, pitting, and slicing an avocado. This slick gadget makes preparing an avocado a breeze. It's a little tool that makes a big difference.

(I love the convenience of shopping online and I think you will too. The links in this post are my referral links. Read my disclosure policy here.)