What do you do when you find yourself needing a ripe avocado and the only one you have on-hand is as hard as a rock? Is it possible to speed up the ripening of an avocado?
I've tested the most popular avocado ripening hacks on the internet to see if it's possible to ripen an avocado quickly. Can it be done? Yes, but probably not as quickly as you'd hope.
The average avocado takes three to five days to ripen naturally on the counter. I bought the hardest avocados I could find and tried to ripen them faster with the following methods:
- Placing the avocado in a paper bag with an apple.
- Warming the avocado in a low-temperature oven.
- Heating the avocado in the microwave.
Here are the results:
1. Ripening an Avocado in a Paper Bag With An Apple:
- Place the unripe avocado in a paper bag with an apple.
- Fold the bag tightly and keep it on the counter at room temperature.
- Check on the avocado every 12 to 24 hours for ripeness.
This method ripened the avocado in two days, compared to the three to five days it would have taken to ripen on the counter. So yes, it definitely speeds up the ripening time.
The end result was an avocado that was rich, creamy, buttery and mild in taste. It had a beautiful yellow-green color with a perfect green rim. This is exactly what an avocado should be in terms of taste, texture, and appearance.
This method of ripening an avocado is great... if you have two days to spare.
2. Ripening an Avocado in the Oven
- Preheat the oven to 200º F. Wrap the avocado in foil and place it in a baking dish.
- Bake in 10-minute increments until the avocado is soft.
- Unwrap the foil and let the avocado cool completely before using.
This method ripened the avocado in 50 minutes, compared to the three to five days it would have taken to ripen on the counter. However, the avocado was burnt around the pit and brown spots developed throughout the flesh. Although it was soft to the touch like a ripe avocado, it still tasted like an unripe avocado and was not appetizing at all.
I wouldn't use this method again.
3. Ripening an Avocado in the Microwave:
- Pierce the avocado all over with a paring knife.
- Microwave the avocado in 30-second increments on a low heat setting.
- Continue until the avocado is soft. Let cool before using.
This method ripened the avocado in three minutes, but it turned the avocado a strange fluorescent green-yellow color and developed many brown spots on the inside. Although the texture was super soft and creamy, the taste was extremely bitter and downright disgusting. Save yourself the avocado and heartbreak by avoiding this method at all costs.
Ripening an avocado in the oven or microwave can be done quickly, but the taste is terrible. If you need to ripen an avocado quickly, your best bet is to place it in a paper bag with an apple. The avocado can still take up to two days to ripen, but it definitely speeds up the process.
At the end of the day, your best bet with avocados is to plan ahead and monitor them closely to get the perfect taste and texture. A perfectly ripe avocado usually has darker green skin and will feel soft to the touch (but not mushy). Remember that if your avocados ripen before you are ready to use them, you can always place them in the fridge to slow them from spoiling.
What To Do With All Those Avocados?
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