We’ve all been there: Scouring the produce section of the grocery store, searching for those perfectly ripened avocados. Not only are they delicious, but they are also packed with the healthy fats and nutrients you need to keep your body running smoothly and able to tackle any run in your training schedule.
Only, you can’t seem to find a ripe one. But scrapping guacamole for tomorrow’s festivities just isn’t an option because let’s just be honest—chips and salsa are far too boring. Don’t fret, we have a seriously brilliant hack that will ripen those hard-as-rocks avocados overnight.
How to ripen an avocado fast
All you need to do is put your unripe avocado in a brown paper bag, close it, and leave it on the kitchen counter. Yes, it’s that easy. Or, if you happen to have a beer koozie on hand, one Reddit user, swears it to be the holy grail hack of avocado ripening.
In case you are curious about why these methods work, it has to do with the ethylene gas that avocados produce. Normally, the gas is slowly released, causing the avocado to ripen accordingly. But, when you enclose the fruit in a bag (or koozie) it concentrates the gas and speeds up the ripening process.
If you want to ripen that avocado even faster, you can add more ethylene gas to the mix by placing other ethylene-releasing fruits in the bag with it, such as bananas, apples, or kiwi. Brilliant, right? It’s worth noting that these ripening hacks will work with other fruits as well.
How to tell if your avocado is ripe
This brings us to the next question: How do you know when an avocado is actually ripe? According to the California Avocado Commission, don’t make the mistake of relying on colour alone. They point out that the Hass avocado turns dark green or black as it ripens, but other varieties will retain their light-green skin. So to truly check if an avocado has ripened, they suggest gently squeezing the fruit. If it is ripe and ready to eat, it should be firm but will yield to gentle pressure.
Delish offers another hack to determine its level of ripeness: Simply take the stem off. “If the area underneath is brown, put it down,” they explain. “That avocado will surely be rotten inside. But if it looks as fresh and green as a spring morn’ underneath? Grab it and run.”
By Hailey Middlebrook