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How to Preserve Avocado

Don’t let a good avocado go to waste! You can save them even if you can’t eat them all today! Here are five ways to preserve avocado and make it last! Preserving avocados is so easy – you’ll never waste another ripe avocado again!

Halved avocado with seed on a yellow plate

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You’ve won the culinary lottery! You’ve found perfectly ripened avocados, ON SALE!, but you know your luck is short-lived when they all become ripened at once, and you can’t eat them all in time. And, because of their fat content (much like nuts), you can’t just throw them in a jar and stick them on a shelf!

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So what are you going to do with those avocados?

First, let’s talk a little bit about avocados.

How to Tell if an Avocado is Ripe

A side by side image of removing the stem end of an avocado to help determine ripeness
  • Look at the stem – pull off the stem bud if it’s not already gone. If the flesh underneath is still green or a very light brown, you’re good! Put it back if it’s a darker brown – it’s too ripe.
  • Give it a little pressure – there should be some give in the avocado, but not mush. If you want to purchase and allow them to ripen, get hard ones and set them out to ripen naturally.
  • Weight is heavy for size – Avocados that are light for their size are too far gone to purchase.

How to Store Avocados

  • On your counter – avocados are best stored on the countertop, especially when trying to ripen.
  • In a paper bag – if you’d like to hurry the ripening process a little, store your avocados in a brown paper bag
  • In the fridge – once your avocados have hit the ripened stage, storing them in the fridge is fine to slow down any ripening process. It won’t stop but will slow it down and give you an extra day or two.
  • Cut, in the fridge – If you’ve already cut your avocados, you can use plastic wrap to cover them or one of the new silicone gadgets to hug avocados.

How to Preserve Avocados

The basis of all preservation of avocados is to stop the oxygenation of the surface layer of the fruit. Thus, an acid is needed, usually in the form of lemon juice or lime juice (my preferred way), a citrus enhancer (Fruit Fresh), or even white vinegar.

Texture issue? Your mileage may vary for texture. I do not like eating frozen avocado that has been thawed on its own. It is smashed to add to something else. Whether on avocado toast, as guacamole, in a smoothie, etc.

One of the easiest and most common methods is to freeze avocados. I grew up believing you couldn’t freeze avocados, but you can! Let’s walk through the steps…

Freezing Avocados

In all instances, cut your avocado open, discard the pit, and sprinkle your citrus juice liberally.

A halved avocado with spoon to remove the flesh over a bowl of avocados

Preserve Avocado Smashed

You can choose to do this as just smashed avocado or full-blown guacamole.

Squeezing lime juice into a stainless steel bowl of mashed avocado to help preserve it
fresh avocado halved, with lime, and a bag of smashed avocado for the freezer

This is my favorite way – it just makes everything easier every step of the way.

  1. Cut the avocado in half.
  2. Discard the pit
  3. Scoop out the flesh with a spoon
  4. Smash avocados with a fork, potato masher, or even use your mixer on low
  5. Fill freezer bags with approximately 2 cups worth (4 avocados)
  6. Lay flat in the freezer to freeze
  7. I store multiple quart bags into gallon-sized, silicone bag

This can also be done with guacamole as you do with just smashed avocado.

Preserve Avocado Whole

Some toss an avocado into the freezer. Then, let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. Give it a try!

a fresh avoado with a freezer bag of avocado halves and a stainless steel straw to show how to remove air manually

Avocado Halves

  1. Cut the avocado in half
  2. Discard the pit
  3. Sprinkle with juice
  4. Place in a quart-sized freezer bag
  5. Remove as much air as possible with a straw (I happen to use stainless steel straws as part of our reduced waste kitchen)
  6. Double bag for up to a month.

Alternatively, you can cut it in half, sprinkle it with juice, and wrap it in plastic wrap to freeze. 

A freezer bag of oxidized and dark avocado halves demonstrating how NOT to freeze avocados

As a caveat — using freezer storage bags like this is meant for the short term only. I sacrificed an avocado to the freezer gods (and it hurt so much to do because I love me some avocado!) to show you what happens — even with lime or lemon juice.

Zip-top freezer bags are air-permeable. They are not airtight. So, using them with avocados should be for a month or less. If you need anything more, you need to use a vacuum sealer.

Vacuum Sealed Avocado Halves

  1. Cut the avocado in half.
  2. Discard the pit.
  3. Sprinkle with juice.
  4. Place in a vacuum seal bag.
  5. Vacuum seal and label.

You’ll see this vacuum sealing process was with avocados not in their skin. They did get squished in the process, but that’s okay!

A bag of havlved avocados being vacuum sealed with a Foodsaver Vacuum Sealer

Diced

I prefer to do this with avocados that are not quite soft. Diced cubes hold up better for me. But it also depends on the kind of avocado you are using, too. You can see in the photo that these were just a wee bit soft, and left smaller schmutz behind (is that a word?) But they froze just fine, didn’t they? I use a spatula to pry them up since I didn’t use a silicone sheet first. You could use parchment if you wanted, but it really isn’t necessary.

chunks of avocado on a stainless steel cookie sheet being prepared to be flash frozen
  1. Cut the avocado in half.
  2. Discard the pit.
  3. Cut avocado halves into thirds in both directions.
  4. Use a spoon to scoop onto a tray.
  5. Sprinkle liberally with juice.
  6. Flash freeze in your freezer.
  7. Bag and remove as much air as possible.

Preserve Avocado by Pickling

Pickled avocados may be an acquired taste for some, but it is a great process for preserving your fruit!

Preserve Avocado by Freeze Drying

If you’ve got a freezer dryer, put that puppy to work and freeze-dry those avocados. Here’s more info on freeze-drying avocados by Harvest Right.

Avocado Fries

You can create this dish and flash-freeze before baking.

Can You Dehydrate Avocados?

Generally, avocados are on the do not dehydrate list because of their fat content and because they are not shelf-stable once dehydrated.

However, many a person has tried – and results vary for the results regarding snacks.

Ways to use smashed avocado

End Results!

So, do you think you’ll try this now that you CAN freeze avocados to preserve them? And with the extra methods I gave you, there’s no reason why you should let your avocados ripen to the point of being unusable if you can’t eat them quickly enough! Preserve them!!!!!!!!!!

Which is your favorite method- or will you be excited to try?

avocados in plastic storage bags - halved, chunked and creamed.

Check out more in the Preserving Series:

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7 Comments

  1. well done Darcy! i love (aargh hate) that the ziplocks are not air tight… (great visual by the way!) we freeze chopped avocados with a bit of lemon, laid flat. when it’s time to make guacamole, 1/2 the work is done! ps we just add some salsa to the defrosted chunks, and we’re good to go.

  2. Hello, how do you defrost them?

    1. I just throw them into the fridge in their packaging until they’ve thawed, then use as normal. It won’t be great as sliced, but making a mash or guacamole, etc. works great!

      1. Awesome, looking forward to using them in cooking and mash! Thanks, fellow Darcy/i! 😀

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