Is your avocado too hard? Learn the best ways to ripen a rock-hard avocado fast, including one that takes just 10 minutes and one for already-sliced unripe avocados. Plus, check out some yummy ways to eat them as is, no hacks necessary!
How To Ripen An Avocado Fast
Oh avocados…. who does not love them? Mashed avocado was my daughter’s first baby food! Avocados are perfect for everybody in the family. Babies, toddlers, kids, and adults can really benefit from eating avocados.
Not only are they tasty, but their nutrition benefits prove even more of a reason to eat the green goodness. At home we are huge avocado fans. Avocados are perfect for babies, kids, and adults. And with this super easy trick, you can now have them always ready (with a few minor caveats, which we’ll discuss).
These days, the avocado has become an incredibly popular food among health conscious people. It is often referred to as a superfood, which is not surprising given its health properties. For example, did you know that an avocado a day can help keep your cholesterol in check and improve your ability to focus?
One study even found that people who eat avocados “tend to consume significantly more of key shortfall nutrients—dietary fiber, vitamins K, and E, potassium, and magnesium- in their diets” than those who don’t eat them.
The problem is avocados are notoriously tricky to get just right. It is pretty hard to have avocados that are ready to eat everyday. When I go grocery shopping I buy my avocados rock hard. I need to wait a few days for them to be ready, but with this trick, I do not need to wait anymore.
How to make a rock-hard avocado ripe? You will be surprised to learn this super easy trick and soften your avocados quickly. You can ripen a rock hard avocado in just 10 minutes. No more hard avocados in your kitchen!
Ripen A Rock-Hard Avocado In Just 10 Minutes!
What you do: Wrap the whole fruit in tinfoil and set it on the baking sheet. Pop it in the oven at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for ten minutes, or until the avocado is soft (depending on how hard it is, it could take up to an hour to soften). Remove it from the oven, then put your soft, ripe avocado into the fridge until it cools.
Why this works: Avocados produce ethylene gas, which is typically released slowly, causing the fruit to ripen. But as the avocado bakes in tinfoil, the gas surrounds it, putting the ripening process into hyperdrive.
Remember that time in the oven depends on how hard that avocado is. Yes, it works for a rock-hard avocado, but remember, even rocks have various degrees of “hardness.”
Help! My Avocado Didn’t Taste Quite Right!
I hear quite a few people saying, “this is bunk, it doesn’t work!” Well, yes, it does work, but maybe not exactly in the way you expect. Of course, a rock-hard avocado ripened in this way is not going to taste exactly like a rich, creamy, naturally ripened avocado. You cannot force nature and expect the same results.
Cooking or baking something (or microwaving it, which I really don’t recommend at all) alters the flavor, texture, nutrients…pretty much everything about the food. That goes for everything from chicken to avocados. That’s just common sense.
When you consider that like 99.9% of avocado recipes involve using raw fruit, it makes total sense that it will taste different after baking it. That doesn’t mean it’s going to taste bad, just not the same. Think of this trick as a great way to get avocados ready for their supporting role in salsa, not their starring role in guacamole.
This Avocado Trick Didn’t Work for Me, Now What?
I’m not going to lie, there will be times when this trick doesn’t work. Hey, when you’re trying to speed nature along, there are no guarantees. Honestly, it works more than half the time for me. Of course, it depends on just how unripe the avocado is to begin with. There’s a difference between a rock hard avocado that’s on the cusp of beginning to ripen and one that literally just came off the tree.
So, what do you do if you need that avocado asap and you don’t have time to run to the store to get ripe ones? While none of these tricks will get you there as fast as the oven hack, they’ll definitely speed up ripening time.
More Tricks to Quickly Ripen Avocados
1. Leave it in the oven longer– As I said, timing varies depending on how close to ripe the fruit is. You may need to go as long as an hour to get the right texture. Note the word texture, not flavor. Unfortunately, the ONLY way to get that perfect avocado flavor is to let nature takes its course.
2. Brown bag it- Avocados ripen faster in a brown bag than just sitting out on your windowsill. Sure, it won’t be guacamole-ready in 10 minutes, but it may be ready as early as the next day.
3. Brown bag it with a banana– Speed up the process even more by tossing a banana or apple in the bag with it. California Avocados recommends pairing it with golden or red delicious apples versus other varieties, as they produce more ethylene. Remember, ethylene is definitely your friend when ripening an avocado fast.
4. Use the rice trick- Avocados From Mexico recommends submerging your unripe fruit in a bowl of rice. Make sure it’s really covered all around. Check it daily to see where it’s at in the ripening process. It’ll take a few days, but it’s definitely faster than just letting it sit in a bag for a week.
5. Set it on a sunny windowsill- While this one is the slowest trick of the bunch, letting your avocado ripen on a sunny windowsill takes less time than leaving it in a non-sunny spot in your kitchen.
Of course, you could always just run back to the store and grab some ripe avocados if you’re looking for that flawless flavor. Whatever you do, though, don’t refrigerate it. In fact, only put it in the fridge if you want to slow down the ripening process.
How to ripen an avocado after you cut it
So, you cut into your avocado only to discover that it’s not as ripe as you thought. Now what? Well, you could skip ahead to some yummy ways to use it as is! That’s probably the easiest course of action. However, if you have your heart set on guacamole and you’re willing to wait another couple of days, there’s no reason to toss it.
According to Avocados from Mexico, you can save those halves from getting nasty while they finish ripening by using lemon or lime juice. Just rub some of the juice on both halves, then put them back together. Wrap them up in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge.
Yes, the fridge. I know I said that it slows down the process, but if you’ve already cut open the fruit, you shouldn’t leave it out on the counter. The enzymes will start to break down the flesh, which could lead to bacterial and fungal growth. In other words, it goes bad.
If you don’t want to use plastic wrap, you could always get this neat avocado holder. It has a patented design to keep your fruit halves fresh longer. With over 1,500 people giving it a total 4.5-star rating, I think it’s definitely worth a try.
Ways to Use a Rock-hard Avocado Without Waiting for it to Ripen
If you’re sticking to an “avocado a day” regimen or just want to use up that sliced unripe avocado right now, there are some delicious ways to enjoy it even if it’s not quite ripe enough.
Baked Avocado Fries
Avocado fries are SO much healthier than potato-based fries, and they actually work best with a fairly rock-hard avocado . Just slice them into wedges, coat them with your choice of seasoning and bake them at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes. Delish has a great recipe for ranch avocado fries, or try Simple Vegan Blog’s gluten-free version.
Making pickles may not be the easiest way to use unripe avocados, but it sure is tasty! Check out this recipe for them over on Keto Diet App. If you don’t need to stick to a keto diet, the Washington Post has a slightly easier method.
Make patties out of them
Turn your unripe avocados into patties that you can use for burgers or in other recipes. Seeded at the Table has a great Avocado Tuna Patty recipe, and AllRecipes has a good one for chicken avocado patties. While neither specify using unripe fruit, you could easily use the oven trick to ripen an avocado fast for this one, since you’ll be changing the taste and texture anyway by baking the patties.
Rock-hard avocado are perfectly safe to eat. They’re just a bit bitter (or maybe a lot bitter, depending on how unripe they are). Still, since they won’t hurt you, go ahead and get creative. Throw them in a soup. Bake an egg up in the two halves. Shred them and use them as a garnish. Anything is better than throwing them away. Americans already waste so much food (80 BILLION pounds a year, as of the latest reports).
If you want to learn more avocado tricks, please see my 5 Useful Hacks Every Avocado Lover Needs To Know post and video tutorial. There are so many things you can do with avocados besides making guacamole. You can actually cook, blend, or even bake avocados and have them for breakfast!
Check out my Best Breakfast Baked Avocado Eggs Recipe for a super easy and healthy breakfast idea. Avocados are just perfect any time of the day. Hass avocados are my favorite because they are super creamy and full of flavor. I could eat avocados every single day and this is why these tips are so amazing.
If you are interested in even more avocado recipes, check out my spaghetti squash and raw pesto avocado sauce or creamy avocado cilantro ranch posts, and my 10 favorite avocado breakfast recipes. Delicious ideas that the entire family can enjoy. Eat more avocados for your family’s health! Last, but not least, check out these tips on how to ripen all of your favorite fruits fast!
Last update on 2022-11-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API