Why I Always Buy an Extra Avocado for Guacamole

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It’s hard to imagine a Super Bowl party without a big heaping bowl of guacamole on the table. Whether served just straight up with chips or used as a topping for nachos or even burgers, guacamole just feels like the right thing to serve, plus I love the fact that it’s full of good-for-you fats.

Making guacamole is so easy: mash some avocados and season it. The key to a good guacamole is starting with good avocados, and here’s why I always buy an extra one if I’m planning to make guacamole!

How I Learned to Always Buy an Extra Avocado

When I was a recipe tester and food stylist, seeing avocados in a recipe always made me nervous. I had to think carefully about the day we would need the avocados and hope that the store had either ripe or unripe ones, depending on when we were planning to use them.

Then when it came time to cut them open, I always held my breath since I never knew if the avocados would have a weird bruise inside or worse, still be unripe. I’ve always had pretty good instincts selecting avocados, knowing how to gently prod and poke to gauge ripeness, but I was never 100% accurate in picking good ones. (Although some claim this tip is their foolproof method.)

One day, when expressing my nervousness about picking avocados, my colleague just simply asked me, “Well, why don’t you just buy an extra one? I always do, especially for photo shoots where you need perfect avocados.” What a smart lady — it wasn’t rocket science, just some good common sense.

Why It’s Worth It to Buy an Extra Avocado

Buying an extra avocado has saved my hide on more than one occasion. If a whole avocado or even parts of a few of them have gone bad, I have an extra one as a replacement to make up for it in a recipe. If an avocado has bruises that won’t look good on camera? Cut open the spare one!

And sometimes I’ve been a little ambitious and added too much lime juice or onion to my guacamole — I throw the extra avocado in and everything balances out.

So what if you end up not needing that extra avocado for guacamole? Well, there are plenty of ways that you can save it, and it’s really not that hard to turn it into something delicious:

(Image credit: Sara Kate Gillingham)

Guacamole Recipes