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4 Ways to Store Avocados to Prevent Them From Turning Brown

Spoon University logo Spoon University 5/14/2018 Cristina Matus

This happens often to all of us: we slice an avocado in half, only eat one half of it, and store the other half in the fridge for later. However, I think we can all agree that the worst part of doing this is opening the fridge hours later to see that the other half of the avocado has turned an unappealing brown color. Because I care about your happiness, I found out how to store avocado four easy and effective ways so that it doesn't turn brown.

Why Does Avocado Turn Brown?

a close up of a fruit: how to store avocado avocado pit avocado © Jocelyn Hsu how to store avocado avocado pit avocado

There's an enzyme in avocados that causes their top layer to turn brown when it comes into contact with air. Don't worry though, these brown parts are completely safe to eat. No need to throw out a ripe (and expensive) avocado just because it's changed color. 

However, we all want to be consuming beautiful, green avocados, regardless of whether or not the brown parts are safe to eat. We've all heard numerous times that we should always cover avocados with plastic wrap to prevent oxidation from contact with air. But, this advice has not worked very well for me, and I bet many of you are nodding while reading this, because it hasn't worked for you either. So, what's the secret? (Is there even a secret?)

How to Store Avocados So They Don't Brown

a close up of a fruit: how to store avocado avocado pit avocado © Jocelyn Hsu how to store avocado avocado pit avocado

Tip #1: Cover your avocado with plastic wrap and a layer of water, pressing the paper down onto the surface when covering it to make sure that the paper sticks to the water and no air bubbles are left. When ready to eat, just drain the water, and enjoy. This trick works especially well on guacamole and other avocado spreads.

a piece of fruit: how to store avocado avocado vegetable © Sarah Silbiger how to store avocado avocado vegetable

Tip #2: Leave the pit in the avocado and top it with plastic wrap. This will lessen the amount of air that comes into contact with the green flesh, which will keep more of the avocado from browning. This doesn't require any more effort than just cutting the avocado in half (or the portion you are going to use), covering it with plastic wrap, and putting it into the fridge.

a bowl of fruit: how to store avocado lemon juice © Claire Waggoner how to store avocado lemon juice

Tip #3: Squeeze a little bit of lemon juice on top of a paper towel and wrap the avocado in it. Then, put the wrapped avocado in a sealable bag and store it in the fridge. The acid in the lemon juice slows down the oxidation process, but can slightly affect the taste of the avocado (which is no big deal if you're using it in a citrusy dish like avocado toast or guac).

a wooden table: how to store avocado onion sliced onions © Jocelyn Hsu how to store avocado onion sliced onions

Tip #4: Place your avocado with its pit in a sealable container with a cut onion,then place it in the refrigerator. The chemical compounds the onion releases serve as a preservative. To ensure the flesh of the avocado doesn't become onion-flavored, make sure the two aren't touching.

Nothing hurts most than having to shave off a brown layer of your avocado, because they're delicious, nutrient-dense, and expensive! Now that you know how to store avocados, you shouldn't have to worry about shaving off the brown bits anymore.

GALLERY: How to Store Every Single Type of Fruit (Even If It's Half Eaten (via PureWow)

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