Oops, I have too much is a blog series dedicated to the inevitable abundance of seasonal produce. Whether you grew it in your garden, got it in your CSA box or just couldn’t resist buying beautiful seasonal produce at the grocery store or farmer’s market, I’ll give you ideas for delicious ways to use your excess food, and tips to preserve it for later so it won’t go to waste.
What to do with lots of avocados
I love having too many avocados. In fact, I often buy too many avocados on purpose because they are so versatile, delicious and nutritious . . . not to mention they’re one of those “superfoods” packed with nutrients and other good stuff, the details of which I don’t bother storing in my brain, other than to note I can have as many as I want and not feel guilty about it.
True story: I used to buy twice as many avocados as I needed, because I was so bad at telling if they are ripe. I figured, if I bought four, and two were too brown and squishy, I would still have two left over to make guacamole.
I now rock at buying avocados and knowing when they’re ripe, so I’m able to eat up every last delicious bite.
Here’s what you need to know about identifying ripe avocados:
- Observing the avocados by color, the darker ones are typically more ripe.
- Pick up an avocado before you buy it, and give it a gentle squeeze:
- Avocados that are hard and unyielding to the touch are under-ripe—you can still buy them, but know that they’ll need to sit on the counter for 3-4 days before using them.
- A perfectly ripe avocado is yielding, but not soft, to the touch. The best description I’ve heard is that if you make a fist, it should feel like the skin at the base of your thumb, in the “V” between your thumb and hand.
- Avocados that are super soft and squishy are probably over-ripe and brown inside.
When you bring an avocado home, store it on the counter at room temp until it reaches it’s peak ripeness (see section above). Once it’s ripe, pop it in the fridge to preserve it for up to a week at the same level of ripeness.
If you’ve cut an avocado and want to store the other half for later, store it with the pit intact (the pit keeps it from turning brown so fast). You can also try spraying the exposed green parts with olive oil or lemon juice, which can also prevent it from turning brown.
I don’t believe there’s “long-term” storage for avocados…am I wrong? Please leave a note in the comments of this post with your insights!
Quick & easy
- Slice thin and layer on a piece of toast. Sprinkle a little bit of coarse salt on there. If you’re feeling fancy, add an easy over egg. YUM. (Hello, favorite breakfast. I love you.)
- Throw a whole or half avocado in a smoothie.
- Guacamole! Enough said.
- Chop up and put in an omelet.
- Eat it plain. With a spoon. It tastes so good. To make it fancier, try this spice mix to put on top.
- Slice and put it on top of any kind of mexican food—like tacos, tortilla soup or burritos.
- Smash an avocado up with a bit of olive oil and smear that business on your FACE. No joke, it will make your skin soft. (I must admit, I have loved smearing food on my face in the name of soft skin ever since I was a pre-teen. Also try: bananas, honey or strawberries.)
- Use avocado slices on sandwiches or, even better, on a hummus pita with sprouts and onions. That’s what I’m going to have for dinner tonight, I just decided.
Recipe ideas to use avocados
- Avocado makes a divine addition to homemade sushi (either inside the roll, or a thin slice wrapped around the outside.)
- This tomato and watermelon salad has chunks of avocado, and if you can cut yours into perfectly sized cubes like that, please invite me over so I can see it.
- Toss some in your grilled garlic bread salad.
- This avocado egg salad is on my meal plan this week.
- Avocado ranch, guys! With spicy egg rolls, or on turkey-bacon pizza, for example.
- This salad recipe doesn’t actually call for avocados…but wouldn’t it be delicious with chunks of avocado along with the cucumbers, feta and chick peas?
- Four words: Guacamole stuffed portobello mushrooms.
Do you have a favorite recipe that features avocados? Tell us in the comments below!