I Can Haas Fast Ripened Avocado?
March 22, 2008 1:36 PM   Subscribe

Fastest way to ripen an avocado?

I'm making Cobb Salad for lunch tomorrow for my inlaws. The only avocados I could find at the store were rock hard. I've got roughly 20hrs to get them to an edible consistency.

Googling around, I saw some theories on nuking them in the microwave for 30secs, brown paper bags, tops of refrigerators, apples, bananas, burying in flour (?!).

Help me Mefites. What's tried and true?

Oh, and if it makes a difference - I have them sitting on a windowsill, in a ziplock with some apples and very well ripened bananas. I figured it's better than nothing...
posted by dancinglamb to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I usually set the avocados in a brown paper bag and the next day the are soft enough for use. Also placing near a banana has worked once also.
posted by Snoogylips at 1:42 PM on March 22, 2008 [1 favorite]


* To ripen a California avocado, place the fruit in a plain brown paper bag and store at room temperature 65-75° until ready to eat (usually two to five days).
* Including an apple or banana in the bag accelerates the process because these fruits give off ethylene gas, a ripening reagent.
* Soft ripe fruit can be refrigerated until it is eaten, but not for more than two or three days.
* The California Avocado Commission does not recommend using a microwave to accelerate the ripening process.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 1:42 PM on March 22, 2008 [2 favorites]

Paper bag with an apple or banana. It will not be ripe in 24 hours, but it will be edible in the Cobb salad, especially if you cut in extra small cubes.
posted by francesca too at 2:21 PM on March 22, 2008

Thirding paper bag with apple. Bananas are too stinky.
posted by rokusan at 2:35 PM on March 22, 2008

This is all good advice; I'm just chiming in to emphasize that you can't substitute a plastic baggie for paper - the fruit needs oxygen to ripen, and plastic seals that out. Plastic also encourages mold growth, so you may end up with unripened yet moldy fruit.
posted by donnagirl at 2:57 PM on March 22, 2008

If you want it to be ready tomorrow place the paper bag with the avocado in a dark cabinet. It should be ready in by tomorrow for lunch.
posted by octomato at 3:26 PM on March 22, 2008

I've tried the microwave method, it did not work for me. YMMV
posted by JujuB at 3:31 PM on March 22, 2008

The microwave trick doesn't work, by the way. It softens the flesh but cannot ripen it, ie. the avocado will be spreadable but soapy.
posted by hot soup girl at 5:33 PM on March 22, 2008

I once tried putting it in a paper bag with an apple, then letting it sit inside a cabinet. It worked very well. It didn't ripen to it's most flavorful peak, but it was definitely still good.
posted by DrGirlfriend at 5:40 PM on March 22, 2008

Heat lamp - I once had to explain to a grocery store manager that their avocados were rotting really fast because it was directly under a very hot store lamp. Seemed to fix 'em in a day.
posted by medea42 at 5:40 PM on March 22, 2008

I tried a paper bag and it didn't ripen fast enough for next-day guacamole, but I had no banana.

However I am really only replying to say that this post title was hilarious.
posted by nev at 6:39 PM on March 22, 2008

It's 10:45pm. I just checked on 'em. Still hard as rocks, but now they're sitting in a paper bag, partying up with some apples in the dark. Hopefully these guys will do their Slow Loris impression by tomorrow.

Thanks for all the suggestions. Oh, and Nev, glad you liked the title. I was trying to come up with something good, and all of a sudden, it struck me. ;)
posted by dancinglamb at 7:46 PM on March 22, 2008

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