How To Ripen Avocado: A Comprehensive Guide


Avocados are a delicious and versatile fruit enjoyed by many all over the world. However, it’s not uncommon to find yourself with unripe avocados when you need them the most. Fret not, because in this article we will explore the various methods and techniques to ripen avocados quickly and properly. This guide is intended for anyone who loves avocados and wants to learn how to ripen them perfectly.

The Perfect Time to Pick and Ripen Your Avocados

Picking an avocado at the right time is key to having one that ripens perfectly. Avocados typically reach maturity on the tree and then ripen after picking. The best time to pick an avocado is when it is fully mature but not yet ripe. This can be determined by checking the color, size, and ease of removal from the tree. The avocado should be dark green and feel firm but yielding when lightly squeezed.

Other factors that can affect the ripening process include the temperature and humidity conditions of your location. Avocados ripen best in warm, humid temperatures around 60 to 75°F (15 to 24°C). If the temperature is too low, it may take longer for the avocado to ripen, while high temperatures can cause the avocado to ripen too quickly.

Once you’ve picked your avocado, it can take anywhere from 3 to 7 days for it to ripen naturally at room temperature.

Ready or Not: How to Tell If an Avocado is Ripe

Avocados can be frustrating to deal with because it’s hard to tell when they are ripe. However, by learning the different stages of avocado ripeness, you can tell whether an avocado is ripe or not.

When an avocado is unripe, it will be hard and the skin will be bright green. As it begins to ripen, you’ll see changes in the color and texture of the skin. When an avocado is perfectly ripe, it will have a dark green, almost black color and feel slightly soft to the touch when pressed gently. It’s important not to rely solely on color to determine ripeness, as some varieties may remain green even when fully ripe.

To check for ripeness without cutting into the avocado, gently squeeze it with your palm. An unripe avocado will feel quite hard while a ripe one will feel like it has a small give to it.

5 Foolproof Ways to Ripen an Avocado Quickly

If you need your avocados ripened quickly, there are a few tried-and-true methods to get the job done.

One of the easiest methods is to place the avocado in a paper bag with an apple or banana for 1-3 days. The ethylene gas produced by the fruit will speed up the ripening process of the avocado.

Another way to ripen an avocado faster is by wrapping it in aluminum foil and placing it in the oven at 200°F (93°C) for 10-15 minutes. This method works by using the heat to speed up the avocado’s natural ripening process.

You can also try placing the avocado in a bowl of uncooked rice or popcorn. The rice or popcorn releases moisture, which can help accelerate the ripening process.

If you’re in a hurry, place the avocado in a plastic bag with a ripe apple or banana and place it in a warm area, like on top of the refrigerator. The avocado should be ripe in just 24 hours.

Another method is to simply bury the avocado in a bowl of flour. This method works by creating a warm, dark environment for the avocado, allowing it to ripen faster.

A Comprehensive Guide to Ripening Avocados Properly
A Comprehensive Guide to Ripening Avocados Properly

A Comprehensive Guide to Ripening Avocados Properly

While quick ripening methods are great in a pinch, they’re not always the best solution. For optimal flavor and texture, there are a few steps to follow when ripening avocados properly.

The first step is to place the avocado at room temperature, away from direct sunlight. This allows the avocado to ripen naturally without any added heat or light.

If you want to speed up the process, you can put the avocado in a loosely closed brown paper bag and leave it at room temperature. This helps to trap the ethylene gas the avocado produces, which helps to speed up the ripening process.

To slow down the ripening process, store the avocado in the fridge. This can be done once the avocado is at its desired level of ripeness. However, it’s important to note that once an avocado has been refrigerated, it will not ripen any further.

How to Ripen an Avocado in Less Than 24 Hours

If you’re really in a rush, there’s a method to ripen an avocado in just a few hours. Simply cut the avocado in half, remove the pit, and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Then, microwave the avocado on high for 30 seconds to 2 minutes, depending on how ripe it is.

After microwaving, let the avocado cool down and then refrigerate it for about an hour. When you take it out of the fridge, your avocado should be perfectly ripe!

Science-Backed Techniques to Ripen Avocados Faster

The science behind the ripening of avocados involves an enzymatic reaction that happens when the fruit is exposed to air. The enzyme oxidase reacts with the air and breaks down chlorophyll, which is what causes the avocado to turn from green to black.

To take advantage of this reaction, cut an avocado in half and remove the pit. Leave one half with the skin intact and cover the other half with lemon juice. Place both halves together in a plastic bag and seal it. The half with lemon juice will ripen faster due to the acidity of the juice.

What To Do With Unripe Avocados: Tips and Tricks

If you have unripe avocados that just won’t ripen, don’t despair! There are a few alternative uses for unripe avocados.

One easy idea is to cut the avocado into strips, coat them in breadcrumbs, and fry them up for some tasty avocado fries. You can also make a DIY face mask by mashing up unripe avocado with a bit of honey and applying it to your face.

To store unripe avocados properly, place them in a paper bag with an apple or banana. Keep the bag at room temperature and check on the avocados every day until they have ripened.


Ripening an avocado can be frustrating, but with this comprehensive guide, you now have several methods to help you get the perfect ripeness every time. Remember to be patient, as natural ripening takes time. If your avocado still won’t ripen after a week, it’s time to give up.

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