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Store Cut Avos The Right Way – Tips for Freshness and Safety

todayFebruary 5, 2024 14

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As the popularity of avocados soars, making sure they stay fresh while combating the inevitable browning becomes a challenge. While there are loads of hacks on the web, not all of them are safe and could potentially lead to food borne illnesses. Let’s check out the safest ways to store cut avocados, debunking some popular but risky methods.

The Danger of Storing Avocados in Water: A viral social media trend in 2022 suggested that storing whole or cut avocados in water could extend their freshness. However, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning against this practice. Despite claims that submerging avocados slows down the oxidation process, it creates an ideal environment for bacterial growth, posing serious health risks.

Health Risks and Bacterial Growth: The FDA cautions against storing avocados in water due to the potential multiplication of human pathogens like Listeria monocytogenes and salmonella. Previous research revealed traces of these bacteria on avocado skins, emphasizing the risk associated with water storage. Listeria monocytogenes and salmonella can cause severe illnesses, making this method unsafe for consumption.

Expert-Approved Ways to Keep Avocados Fresh:

  1. Counter Storage: Store avocados on the counter and transfer them to the fridge once ripe to extend their life, as recommended by the Cleveland Clinic.
  2. Rinsing and Drying: Rinse whole avocados under running water, scrub them with a produce brush, and dry them with a clean towel before storing at room temperature.
  3. Citric Acid Protection: Squeeze lemon or lime juice on exposed avocado surfaces to slow down oxidation. Wrap cut avocados in plastic until ready to use.
  4. Freezing: Quarter avocados, remove the skin, add citrus juice, and freeze them in a resealable plastic bag. This method deactivates bacteria, suitable for smoothies or blender recipes.
  5. Guacamole Preservation: Preserve guacamole by drizzling lime juice on top and placing plastic wrap directly on its surface to minimize exposure to air. Alternatively, store it in gallon-size bags in the freezer for better storage.

While the struggle to keep avocados from browning is real, safety should be a top priority. Storing avocados in water may seem like a convenient hack, but it increases the risk of harmful bacteria. Fortunately, expert-approved methods, such as proper storage, citrus protection, and freezing, provide safe alternatives for enjoying avocados at their best.

Written by: Ian Fraser

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