How To Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe

3 Clues to Tell If An Avocado Is Ready to Buy and Eat

By: Jeremy Fox, CNC, CPTUpdated: February 25, 2023

Trying to find a ripe avocado feels like a guessing game. And it gets even more complicated when you want to buy avocados for the week.

If you’re like me, you spend way too long in the produce section sweating about your decision. Only to be disappointed when you cut open an avocado that’s not ready to eat.

That’s why I will give you three quick tips to tell when an avocado is ripe.

How to Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe

What Is a Ripe Avocado?

A ripe avocado is ready to eat and has a texture that works well for various recipes and meal options. In other words, it should be firm enough to eat like fruit yet creamy enough to mash into guacamole.

On the inside, an avocado is ripe when it has a bright yellowish-green color. Also, the seed and skin should easily separate from the fruit.

When the avocado is firm and doesn’t separate easily, it’s not ripe. And, of course, it shouldn’t be brown or mushy.

However, the problem is that you must purchase the avocado without looking inside. So I will show you how to tell if an avocado is ripe without cutting it open.

 
 
 
 
 
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How To Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe

You can tell if an avocado is ripe based on its color, firmness, and stem. But interpreting these signs is a bit of an art, so I’ll explain more below.

Here is how to tell if an avocado is ripe:

  1. The skin is a slightly darker shade
  2. It feels less firm when squeezed
  3. You can peel off the stem

Now let’s look at each method for assessing avocado ripeness in more detail.

1. How to Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe By Color

An unripe avocado is dark green to a mix of green and purple. In comparison, a ripe avocado has uniform dark purple skin. And over-ripe avocados turn almost black.

The infographic below provides a good illustration of a ripe avocado compared to an unripe and over-ripe avocado.

how to tell if an avocado is ripe by color

2. How to Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe By Feel

When you squeeze a ripe avocado, it feels soft yet retains its shape. On the other hand, a firm and solid avocado probably isn’t ripe yet.

And if the avocado feels mushy and deforms, it’s past ripe and probably brown on the inside.

3. How to Tell If An Avocado Is Ripe By The Stem

Looking under the avocado stem is like a sneak peek at what’s inside. Green means ripe, while brown is past ripe.

And if you can’t peel up the stem at all, the avocado won’t be ripe for at least a couple of days.

How To Buy Avocado Ripe Avocados

Of course, if you’re buying avocados to use later in the week, you’ll have to plan ahead. The best way to do that is to get avocados of varied ripeness.

In other words, pick a couple of avocados that are ripe now (dark purple). Some that will be ripe in 1-2 days (dark green/purple). And some that will be ripe in 3-5 days (bright to dark green).

How To Ripen Avocados Quickly

So what do you do with an avocado that’s nowhere near ripe? As it turns out, there are a couple of ways to make an avocado ripen faster.

The best way to ripen avocados faster is to place them in a brown paper bag with an apple or banana. The bag traps the gases produced by the fruit and speeds up the ripening process. However, it can still take multiple days to be ready to eat.

Another common recommendation to ripen avocados quickly is heating them in the microwave or oven. However, in my experience, this only gives you a hot & smelly unripe avocado. Not very appetizing, to say the least!

More Food Tips

The art of picking a ripe avocado is worth mastering to prepare delicious meals. With the tips you just learned, you’ll pick the perfect avocados every time.

Check out these other nutrition articles I think you’ll find useful.

Simple 3-Minute Proats Recipe

High Protein Kodiak Pancake Recipe

Delicious Bone Broth Rice Recipe

Healthy Homemade Vinaigrette Salad Dressing Recipe

With this information, you’re one step closer to being a meal prep master. Here are some additional fitness-related articles to help you continue learning.

Share with your community and get the conversation started!

By |February 25, 2023|Nutrition|0 Comments
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