Everyone needs to shave off a few minutes of their day when it comes to meal prep. The tricky thing is not to compromise nutrition and health while cutting those corners. With that said, the centerpiece of the three meals in this post is the world’s smartest fruit: avocado. To help you out on those busy days, here’s a trio of fun and easy avocado recipes.
Before we get down to the business of cooking, let’s figure out how to pick out the best avocado.
Selecting the right avo
Most of us don’t live in an avocado-producing state or country. Most likely, the avocados in your supermarket are rock-hard. Farmers harvest the fruit long before it is ripe because the fruit will endure a long journey to get to your town.
Hass, the jagged, jade green avocado is available year-round. Their creamy, silky texture makes them more suitable for guacamole and spreads.
Much larger, the pear-shaped, emerald Florida avocados show up in supermarkets from June through February. Less creamy, save the sunshine state avocados to dice and slice, not spread.
Buy them now, ripen them at home
If you need to use your avocado sooner rather than later, keep the fruit on your kitchen counter. Otherwise, store avocados in the refrigerator, allowing them to ripen at its own pace. Storing the fruit in the fridge will extend shelf life.
It never fails that I split an avocado and only use half of the fruit. In a matter of hours, the exposed flesh of the remaining half fades from that emerald green to a brown. The kitchen experts from Cooks Illustrated suggest to:
- Rub one tablespoon of olive oil on all of the exposed flesh
- Allow the excess fat to drain into a shallow bowl
- Place the avocado half cut-side down in the center of the oil puddle, creating a seal
- Store in refrigerator
To learn how to prep an avocado, watch this quick video from America’s Test Kitchen.
The nutritional skinny on avocados
Your belly– You know that I am not an advocate of weight loss programs or diets. Instead, I prefer reaching into nature and grabbing real food to reach your optimum weight. So why not start with avocados? The fruit contains monosaturated fatty acids (MUFA), which is the fat that, well, burns fat.
Your brain- an eating plan rich in MUFAs boost memory and prevent mental decline
Your blood sugar- research shows that eating plans rich with avocados help regulate blood sugar levels.
2 Haas Avocados smashed
Juice from one lime
1 teaspoon of sea salt
1 tomato finely diced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/4 cup, chopped fresh cilantro
1 small, purple onion, diced (optional)
Avocado BLT Pizza
Cauliflower or butternut squash pizza crust serves as the base for this Avocado BLT pizza.
- Cauliflower or Butternut Squash Pizza Crust
- 2 Haas Avocados, peeled and mashed
- 1 lemon
- 4 organic cherry tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 cup of fresh mozzarella, distributed over pizza
- 3 slices of no-sugar, nitrate-free bacon cooked and crumbled
- 1-2 cups of baby spinach
- 1 Tablespoon of olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
- Peel and mash avocado, then add 1 tsp of lemon juice. Mix. Add olive oil and garlic to a medium skillet. Cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Add the spinach to the skillet and cook until spinach wilts. Remove from heat.
- Spread avocado on crust. Sprinkle diced tomatoes, bacon, and spinach on pizza. Top with cheese. Bake on 350 for 15 minutes or until crust is firm.
Avocado Taco Boats
If you need a super quick lunch, then this recipe will float your boat.
1lb of ground beef or turkey
1 Tablespoon of avocado oil
1 clove of minced garlic
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup of riced cauliflower
1/2 cup of riced butternut squash
1 can of BPA-free diced tomatoes, drained
2-3 Tablespoons of fresh cilantro, chopped
1 lime, sliced into wedges
In a medium skillet, add avocado oil and garlic. Cook for 30 seconds. Add chopped onion. Cook until onion is translucent. Add ground beef. Cook until completely brown. Add riced cauliflower, butternut squash, and tomatoes to the skillet. Stir until heated.
Remove from heat. While meat is cooling, cut avocados in half, scoop out flesh around the pit, and put in a small bowl. Dice the avocado.
Assemble the avocado boat by adding meat and veggie mixture, then top with diced avocado. Serve with a lime wedge. Top with chopped cilantro.