Holy guacamole!
May 24, 2005 6:09 PM   Subscribe

Your best guacomole recipes please! (read: we can't drink margaritas on an empty stomach.)

There has been a thread for dip recipes, but I am having people over this weekend for pre-dinner drinks and am planning to serve up margaritas and beer. Looking for some kick-ass guac to go with it.
posted by gaspode to Food & Drink (41 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: If only I could spell the name of the dip. It's an A dammit.
posted by gaspode at 6:23 PM on May 24, 2005

1 avocado, perfectly ripe (flesh should yield to firm pressure without being mushy)
1/2 lime, freshly squeezed
1 dash cayenne
coarse salt to taste

Peel and pit the avocado, crush coarsely (I use a potato masher), add lime juice, cayenne, and salt. Stir to combine ingredients: don't puree the avocado, just stir enough to mix everything. Serve immediately.
posted by mr_roboto at 6:26 PM on May 24, 2005

Oh, and in case you can't tell, the theme of that recipe is: simple. Simple is best. Use a good avocado, and everything else will just fall into place.
posted by mr_roboto at 6:28 PM on May 24, 2005

*laughs* There's an empty bowl of homemade guac sitting in front of me. I rushed it with the last avocado I had, since it was going bad anyway, but chopped onions, minced garlic, a little lemon juice and a healthy pinch of salt always work for me.

The real key to good guac, though - regardless of your position on tomatoes/no tomatoes and other important debates - is to make it a day ahead and let it sit overnight. Use a deep bowl to minimize the browning due to exposure to the air, but for god's sake let whatever flavors you select blend together in the fridge for a good number of hours.

p.s. Yes to tomatoes.
posted by mediareport at 6:33 PM on May 24, 2005

This recipe makes a party-sized portion of guac:

3 avocados
1 lime (quarter, slice and squeeze juice into bowl)
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup diced Spanish onion
1/4 cup fresh, finely chopped cilantro/coriander
1-2 RIPE plum tomatoes diced
1 tsp minced garlic
1-3 tsp ground cayenne, depending on how much "kick" you want

Slice the avocados in half, get rid of the pit and scoop the insides, with a spoon, into a good sized bowl. Quarter the lime, slice into the pulp and squeeze the juice onto the avocados. Add the salt to the bowl. Use a potato masher or pastry mixer mash the avocado into the guacamole's normal consistency (no big chunks). Add onion, cilantro, tomato, garlic and cayenne. Mix. Refrigerate for at least an hour.

Not as simple as mr_roboto's recipe, but the cilantro is a must-have for me. Yum.
posted by sanitycheck at 6:37 PM on May 24, 2005

Previous AskMeFi thread on "extraordinary guacamole recipes". =)

Guacamole and margaritas, mmm mmmm.
My standard recipe includes garlic, cilantro, tomatoes, green onions, and jalapeno; mash with avocados; add chili powder, cumin, salt, and lime juice. Sometimes I mix in sour cream (yeah, yeah, I know, but I never get complaints).
posted by Melinika at 6:39 PM on May 24, 2005

Response by poster: Oooh sorry, my searching didn't come up with the previous thread, only the mention in the dip thread. My apologies.
posted by gaspode at 6:42 PM on May 24, 2005

The real key to good guac, though...is to make it a day ahead and let it sit overnight

That is the single most insane thing I have read in my entire life. I respect you, mediareport, but that's just crazy. Crazy.

Serve your guacamole fresh. Please, for the love of all things holy, serve it fresh. Avocado tastes best immediately after the peel has been removed, and it degrades quickly. As for the flavors "blending", the most important flavor is that of the avocado, and you don't want to compromise on it.
posted by mr_roboto at 6:46 PM on May 24, 2005

No problem, gaspode! It stuck in my head because of the unusual recipe given involving pomegranates.

Oh, and I learned this recently: you can bring an avocado to ripeness outside of the fridge, then pop it back in the fridge, and it will keep for a long time without getting yucky. As in, a week or two at least. Then it's ready to use whenever.

(Mine has no proportions because I do it to taste every time - sorry - you can call it sloppy but I like to think of it as artistic *snicker*.)
posted by Melinika at 6:48 PM on May 24, 2005

It's almost impossible to put in too much lemon juice and salt. Put in what you think is the right amount, taste, then put in that amount again.
posted by escabeche at 6:50 PM on May 24, 2005

Sometimes I mix in sour cream (yeah, yeah, I know, but I never get complaints).

I think you must have polite friends! Why do this tragic thing?

My feelings: Must-have ingredients are avocado, salt, lime, and cayenne (or minced hot pepper). Acceptable additions are garlic (which I like very much), cumin, cilantro, minced red onion, and/or very ripe tomatoes (I consider them allowable, but don't prefer them). Lemon juice will do in a pinch. Chili powder (as opposed to powdered chile peppers) is not done, nor are beans, cheese, apples, pomegranate, celery, or anything else. (Parentheses should be served on the side.)
posted by redfoxtail at 6:51 PM on May 24, 2005

Please, for the love of all things holy, serve it fresh.

Well, if you're not even going to bother mashing it all up into a fine puree, I can understand why you'd enjoy the fresh bits as a kind of salad. I've had it like that many times and it's delish (although why you'd exclude cilantro is beyond me). But if you mix it all up into an avocado-garlic-lemon smoothee, a few hours of blending time is a must for creating something truly heavenly.

I'll back off from overnight (when I make a big batch it seems to just get better and better as it sits), but a few hours is essential.
posted by mediareport at 6:55 PM on May 24, 2005

Aside from all the things already recommended here--freshness, salt, citric, etc.--the single ingredient that I've discovered for an awesomely distinctive guac is curry. My wife picked this up somewhere in in her travels through the Middle East, and it can really make a huge difference.

Not that you'd want to add it in every single time, but when you want to make something that's a little different (and tastes great), add a teaspoonful of curry. Really, really good.
posted by LairBob at 7:00 PM on May 24, 2005

I hate to sound like a purist, because I'm not, but one important thing for making really good guacamole is to use a glass bowl and, if possible, a silver fork. Steel reacts with the avocado and gives it a slightly metallic taste. I don't have any silver so I use a wooden spoon.

If you want to keep it fresh in the fridge, cover it with plastic wrap, but make sure there is no air between the wrap and the dip. You can even leave a thin layer of mayo on the topic to keep the green fresh.

Personally, I'd skip the garlic and use cilantro. The two don't go together well.
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 7:48 PM on May 24, 2005

I make some pico de gallo (tomato, jalapeño, serrano, onion, cilantro, garlic, salt) and let that sit overnight. Then I take 1/3 of that and add mashed avocado, cumin and lemon. That way I have both salsa and guac, and it allows the flavors to blend while keeping the avocado fresh.
posted by cali at 7:52 PM on May 24, 2005

I'm very pro cumin. I also like lime juice, cayenne, and sometimes, a chopped up tomato.
posted by abbyladybug at 8:20 PM on May 24, 2005

I'd skip the garlic and use cilantro. The two don't go together well.


Tell it to Alton Brown.
posted by mediareport at 8:42 PM on May 24, 2005

I've made it just about every way already mentioned - including, excuse me for saying this, even with sour cream or mayo.

I also sometimes add very small chunks of cheddar cheese.
posted by LadyBonita at 8:48 PM on May 24, 2005

Simple. Keep it simple. Salt, black pepper, cayenne, little lime juice, little onion powder. Done. Simple.

(I'm intrigued by the curry idea. I'll have to give that a try.)
posted by sublivious at 8:49 PM on May 24, 2005

A tablespoon of mayo will keep it from turning brown. You gotta have the garlic! I disagree totally with escabeche. You don't want too much citrus, just enough.
posted by wsg at 9:31 PM on May 24, 2005

Jacques Pepin also disagrees on the garlic and cilantro front.

His recipe includes avocado (obviously), plus tomato, onion, garlic, poblano peppers, scallion, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and also a splash of tabasco.
posted by Caviar at 10:13 PM on May 24, 2005

Avo, salt, lime juice, maybe some finely minced scallions. Some garlic is okay too.
-Substitute fresh lemon juice if you don't have any limes
-No to cilantro (as people who don't like it REALLY don't like it), but YES to ground coriander seed (same plant, different bits & very different tastes). I like white pepper over cayenne.
- to keep it fresher without mayo, level the guac in a deep bowl and liberally squirt it with more lime juice to coat the surface (I'm with escabeche on the cirtus & salt bit).
posted by obloquy at 1:48 AM on May 25, 2005

Laura Bush's Guacamole Recipe:

8 ripe avocados
4 lemons, juiced
7 shallots, finely chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1/2 bunch cilantro, finely chopped
1 tsp black pepper
1 Tbsp salt

Halve and pit avocados and scoop out flesh into a bowl. Mash to desired consistency and mix in remaining ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour before serving. Serve with tortilla chips.

(Personally, I make it just like Mr. Roboto, but with more than a pinch of cayenne.)
posted by caddis at 2:41 AM on May 25, 2005

It stuck in my head because of the unusual recipe given involving pomegranates.

That recipe is amazing. I often leave out the pomegranates, add more grapes, and add jalapenos. I never follow the recipe exactly, but it never misses. Guaranteed hit.
posted by anathema at 4:16 AM on May 25, 2005

3 ripe avocados
1 medium ripe tomato
1 small red onion
1/4 cup of lime juice
1 tsp black pepper
jalapeno peppers at your discretion
banana peppers at your discretion

Mix together the avocados and lime juice with a fork. Then add the tomato and onion (chopped). Drop in the pepper, jalapenos, and banana peppers and mix it all up as well as you can.

It's spicy, chunky, and easy to make. ;)
posted by purephase at 4:57 AM on May 25, 2005

I prefer my guacamole simple. For each avocado, I use the juice of half a lemon, half a teaspoon of salt, and one clove of garlic. Puree the garlic with your knife. Mash all the ingredients together, but leave some lumps.
posted by anapestic at 5:57 AM on May 25, 2005

avocado (2)
lime juice (2 small limes or 1 larger lime)
salt (um, about this much)
minced serrano chile (at least one, sometimes two. I like the taste of serranos much more than jalepeños. They are hotter, though, so adjust.)
cilantro (lots)
onion (half of a big onion)

Sometimes I like to puree about half of the mixture so that there's plenty of lumps in a smooth base.

I don't like tomatoes in my guac, but I usually make a salsa cruda at the same time with essentially the same ingredients (with tomato subbed for avocado. I've been using good-quality canned tomatoes when good local tomatoes are unavailable.) When making both, I intentionally make one hotter than the other.
posted by desuetude at 6:37 AM on May 25, 2005

Guacamole without a chile (jalapeno or otherwise) is really just avocado paste.
posted by grateful at 7:19 AM on May 25, 2005

The Diana Kennedy recipe is the most authentic and my favorite. Oddly I forgot that she includes tomatoes, so I leave them out. And serranos are the essential chile to use.
posted by scazza at 9:24 AM on May 25, 2005

Guacamole compliment: this dip went over big at the last party I took it to. Not guacamole but a nice compliment to it.

1 c mayonnaise
1/2 c sour cream
1 Tbsp chipolte in adobo puree*
1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)
green stuff, chopped parsley or cilantro to taste
a little salt and pepper

Mix everything together. Adjust the chipolte paste for heat.

* I buy a can of chipolte peppers in adobo and whiz them around in the food processor. The leftover paste stores well in the fridge for BBQ sauce and whatever.
posted by KrustyKlingon at 9:34 AM on May 25, 2005

These are great. I don't have anything to add recipe-wise, but I will share an avacado tip: if you put the avacadoes in a brown paper bag with some bananas, they ripen faster. I swear this works.
posted by mai at 10:12 AM on May 25, 2005

Avocados, lime juice, salt. Mash with a fork. Do not serve this cold. (BTW: Don't store unripened avocados in the frige - after being chilled, they will never ripen properly)

If you want to get fancy mince a little onion, garlic, jalapeño, cilantro, and add a pinch of cumin.

Mayonnaise and sour cream in guacamole? NO. Jesus. No.
posted by fourstar at 10:19 AM on May 25, 2005

Um fourstar, the chipolte dip is a separate dish. For guacamole, the simpler the better--hold the mayo, of course.
posted by KrustyKlingon at 11:49 AM on May 25, 2005

I'm not about to get into the tomato/no tomato debate, but if you choose to put tomatoes in your guacamole, then be sure to scoop out the seeds first...

Now I'm hungry and I hate you all.
posted by Space Kitty at 12:01 PM on May 25, 2005

I just made this:

4 avocados
1 tomato
3 cloves garlic
Juice of 3 limes
1 yellow or red onion
Cilantro to taste
Salt to taste

it was a smash success at the office going away party, and the avocados weren't even fully ripe yet!
posted by clgregor at 12:04 PM on May 25, 2005

Ripe avacado, left a little chunky.
Clove of garlic, pressed.

I'm so hungry. So very, very hungry.
posted by Specklet at 12:23 PM on May 25, 2005


- Mash as many avocados as needed for volume
- Add fresh pico de gallo (I buy mine) til it looks/tastes right (your favourite salsa will do in a pinch)
- Add pre-crushed garlic (in a jar - or crush your own) to taste
- Add dashes of your favourite hot sauce to taste (Tabasco or whatever)
- Add the juice from a couple slices of lime

Fry up a ton of tortilla chips (cut corn tortillas into six wedges and fry until done) or open a bag of your favourite brand of chips.

posted by deborah at 12:30 PM on May 25, 2005

I can't remember where i picked this recipe up, but its the only guac I make now. Its called New Wave because New Wave is awesome and so is the guac. It sounds totally weird and ISN'T 'traditional' but its SO GOOD! Hope you like it!


(Add more color by serving this in a large leaf of red cabbage. Impress the heck outta your amigo/as.)

2 ripe avocados, peeled, pitted
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeño or serrano chili
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 teaspoon curry powder

Peanut oil
1 12-ounce package wonton wrappers

1 cup diced peeled seeded cucumber
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Place first 6 ingredients in large bowl. Mash with fork to coarse puree. Press plastic wrap onto surface and chill.

Pour oil into heavy saucepan to depth of 3 inches and heat to 375°F Cut wonton wrappers diagonally in half, forming triangles. Working in batches, fry wontons until crisp, about 30 seconds per side. Using slotted spoon, transfer to paper towels and sprinkle with salt. (Guacamole and wontons can be made 4 hours ahead. Cool wontons, then store in airtight bag.)

Mix cucumber and cilantro into guacamole. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with wonton chips.

Makes about 1¾ cups.
posted by indiebass at 1:13 PM on May 25, 2005

Slightly off-subject, but have you tried combining the joys of margarita and guac in one tasty combo? Seriously, dump your margarita ingredients in the blender, and throw in, say, a third of an avocado per drink. Sounds terrifying but it's creamy and gorgeous and not at all disgusting, plus it has the added bonus of making volume drinking almost healthy. Or so you can tell yourself.

From a former Austinite for whom a good avocado margarita is heaven on earth on a blazing summer afternoon.
posted by catesbie at 1:56 PM on May 25, 2005

Another option for keeping it fresh once it's made (if you're going to go with the let-it-sit option) is to save the pit(s) and place them in the bowl with the guacamole, covered and refrigerated, of course.
posted by Token Meme at 2:49 PM on May 25, 2005

The pit thing is a myth, Token Meme, as this link from the previous guac thread points out. The browning is the result of simple reaction with oxygen; putting a pit in there does nothing to slow that down.
posted by mediareport at 3:22 PM on May 25, 2005

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