Make the best use of your avocados with this easy guacamole recipe. It's a classic, simple recipe that you can customize to make your own!
I love guacamole because it is a super healthy dip! My kids love it and I always feel like they are getting some good nutrition when they eat it. Avocados themselves are a nutrient dense food, full of healthy fat, fiber, and potassium. Every week we have a Mexican night. I make either ground chicken tacos or fajitas with our favorite Mexican citrus marinade for chicken. I always make either this guacamole or restaurant-style salsa to go with it.
Guacamole is delicious but the hardest part about making guacamole is buying avocados. Am I right?! Once you master my avocado buying tips, you're well on your way to making this easy guacamole recipe!
Tips for Buying Avocados
Is there anything worse than a bad avocado? No. There is not. Aside from cutting open avocados at the store, how on earth are you supposed to know if you're getting a good one? Here are some tips and tricks to buying that perfect avocado, every time!
Buy them when they're still firm and green.
Then, let them ripen at home.
Fun fact: Did you know an avocado never actually ripens until it's taken off of the tree? So let's think about that, if you're buying an already ripe/soft avocado, who knows how much it has been knocked around before you bought it. Whereas if it's still firm, it won't be as easily bruised and you know it's still pretty fresh.
While this means you need to plan ahead as it will take the avocados 4-5 days to ripen, you have much better odds of getting a good avocado.
Don't pull off the stem/button.
I've seen this 'tip' floating around the internet that if you pluck off the stem and it's green underneath you know the avocado is ripe. Sadly, this isn't true. If you take that stem off you're opening a hole in the barrier that's protecting the fruit which allows air to enter. Now that part of the avocado is going to oxidize and turn brown. Don't do that!
Always buy one more than you need.
Despite our best efforts, sometimes you get a dud. If you buy an extra at least you'll have a backup!
To ripen, let the avocados soften at room temperature on your counter. I place them in a basket with my bananas. Bananas release ethylene gas and can help the ripening process.
An avocado is ripe and ready to use when it gives a little to the touch but isn't mushy: Place the avocado in the palm of your hand and give a gentle squeeze, without using your finger tips. The avocado will give slightly to gentle pressure when it's ready. If it's mushy, sadly you've waited too long.
Put the avocados in the fridge for 1-2 days if they are ripe but you're not ready to use them.
Ingredients for Guacamole
This classic guacamole is easy to customize. For example, I often find myself using onion powder vs. raw onion. Either out of laziness or to make the dip more mild in flavor. The truth is, it's both.
- Avocados: Haas avocados are the best for this recipe and the most common avocado you'll find in the store.
- Lime Juice: From fresh limes. This is necessary and important. The limes will help keep the guacamole from turning brown and fresh limes have the best flavor. I like it tangy so sometimes I use two small limes. This also really helps prevent the guacamole from browning for a couple of days.
- Sour Cream: Secret ingredient alert! It also helps keep the guac fresh longer and adds richness.
- Fresh Cilantro: I have professed my love for cilantro many times, but if it's not your thing... leave it out!
- Jalapeño: remove the seeds and the jalapeño won't add too much spice to this dip at all. If you don't have one, it can be omitted.
- Diced Onion, Shallot, or Onion Powder: your choice. Do you like the zippy crunch of a fresh onion? Or do you prefer something a little more mild in flavor? Then go for a shallot or onion powder. Most of the time I use onion powder.
- Garlic clove or Garlic Powder: Either works, use what you have on hand.
- Dried Spices: Don't leave these out. Cumin, kosher salt, and pepper add a necessary flavor boost!
Making the Guacamole
Squeeze the lime juice into a large bowl. Then scoop out your avocados and mash them together with just the lime juice.
Once the avocados are mashed, dump in the remaining ingredients and give it a stir. That's pretty much it! I usually taste for seasoning and decide if it needs more salt.
Pop the guacamole into the refrigerator until serving.
You might wonder, if you don't use it all up, what's the best way to store the leftover guacamole?
The key is getting rid of the air:
- Put the guacamole in a glass container. Then press plastic wrap directly onto the surface and smooth out any air bubbles. Put the lid on top of the container and store in the fridge.
- Use a guacamole keeper.
- Put a thin layer of sour cream or water on top of the guacamole. To serve: Stir in the sour cream or dump out the water and then stir.
The guacamole will be best when eaten within 1-2 days. Keeping air away from the guacamole along with the lime juice will help prevent oxidation, but unfortunately the guacamole will oxidize eventually.
If you're making it for a party, make the guacamole as close to party time as possible.
There you have it! Perfect, easy guacamole! This creamy, tangy dip is just begging for some salty tortilla chips!
- 3-4 ripe avocados
- 1 lime
- 1 jalapeno, , , seeds removed, finely diced
- ¼ cup cilantro, chopped
- ¼ cup onion or shallot, finely diced,, or ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 clove garlic,, or ¾ teaspoon garlic powder
- ¼ cup sour cream
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon cumin
- Mash the avocado together with the juice of one lime.
- Add in the remaining ingredients. Mash again to combine. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired. Refrigerate until serving.