According to Google UK, there’s been a 5,000% increase in “avocado” searches since mid-2013. More and more people are falling in love with the avocado, and with good reason – its great taste is rivalled only by its many health benefits.
Avocados contain 18 of the amino acids our body’s need to form a complete protein, including all eight essential amino acids. Unlike the proteins found in foods like steak, however, avocado protein is easy to digest. That’s because this fruit (technically a large berry) is packed with lots of fibre.
To celebrate this new fruit on the block, we’ve put together five of our favourite avocado recipes for you to try for yourself.
And don’t worry: we know you know how to make guacamole.
Baked Egg Avocado
You might have heard that avocados are high in fat, but don’t worry. It’s monounsaturated fat, specifically oleic acid, which is the good kind of fat – the kind that helps lower bad cholesterol and improve cardiovascular health.
Another great source of oleic acid is in free-range egg yolks. Technically they don’t have to be free-range, but doesn’t being kinder taste nicer? Pair your avocado with a couple of eggs for this tasty and healthy breakfast:
- Cut 1 large avocado in half, and remove the pit. If it’s a small pit, scoop a bit of the avocado out to make room for the egg.
- Crack 2 eggs into a bowl
- Using a spoon, place 1 yolk (and however much egg white you can fit) into the each of the holes left by the pits
- Place on a baking tray, and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 220 degrees
- Remove from the oven, season with a pinch of salt and pepper, and enjoy a breakfast that’s as tasty as it is heart-healthy
Avocado Spring Rolls
Packed with vitamin A, avocados can strengthen eye health and enhance the immune system. They even promote the healthy functioning of the reproductive system. With such a wide array of benefits, these big berries are the perfect lunchtime ingredient for food lovers watching their health.
These scrummy spring rolls also use carrots – a vegetable rich in vitamin A, which is why people say they help you see in the dark!
- Cut 1 large avocado in half, remove the skin and pit, and slice the two avocado halves into strips
- Soften 4 spring roll skins in cold water for about 5 seconds, and then lay them flat on your work surface
- Place the avocado strips in the spring roll skins
- Also fill with a few grilled chicken slices, some romaine lettuce and some finely-shredded carrots
- Fold the spring roll skin shut, and place in the fridge until lunchtime
- Optional: pair with a dipping sauce (soy sauce goes great with spring rolls)
Because avocados are in demand right now, some farmers are cutting down protected pine forests to make way for avocado trees. Meals like these spring rolls, which use avocado in moderation with other substantial ingredients like chicken and carrots, ensure you don’t over-indulge on this fun fruit.
As avocados are so intimately connected with Mexican cuisine, it only seems right to include a recipe inspired by the country. The beauty of this recipe is its flexibility.
We’ve gone for black beans to accompany the avocado, but you could mix almost anything in there – chicken, caramelised onion or even bacon. You can also dial the spice up or down, depending how sensitive your taste buds are!
- Cut 1 large avocado in half, remove the skin and pit, and mash the two halves into a bowl
- Season with salt, pepper, crushed garlic, paprika and (if you have it) a pinch of smoked paprika or chipotle
- Add a sprig of finely-chopped coriander, the juice from a small lime and ½ finely-chopped red onion
- Mix it all together until it’s formed a cohesive paste, and set aside (if it’s looking a bit thick, you can always add a dash of olive oil until you reach the desired consistency)
- Melt a small knob of butter in a stovetop pan on medium heat
- Place a whole-wheat tortilla in the pan, and scoop some of your avocado mixture onto the tortilla along with some drained and rinsed black beans (ready-cooked)
- Grate over some of your favourite cheese (along with any other ingredients you want to add) and place another tortilla over the top, pressing down with your spatula
- After a few minutes, carefully flip the tortilla over to cook the other side
- Once cooked on both sides, transfer to a warm plate and then cut into triangles with a pair of scissors
- Repeat with as many tortillas as you like, and you’ll have a healthy meal that tastes exquisite
Avocado Ice Cream
Avocados contain a powerful blend of vitamins C and E, carotenoids, selenium, zinc, phytosterols and omega-3 fatty acids, all of which work together to help protect against inflammation.
So if you want treat yourself to ice cream and are looking for the perfect excuse, try this recipe – it’ll at least help ward off arthritis!
- Chill a baking dish in the fridge for at least 30 minutes
- Cut 1 large avocado in half, remove the skin and pit, and place in an electric blender
- Add 420 ml of sweetened condensed milk, juice from 1 lemon, and a pinch of salt to the blender
- Beat for about 2 minutes or until the mixture begins to firm
- Fold 240 grams of whipped cream into the mixture and stir until they become cohesive, and then do the same with another 240 grams of whipped cream
- Beat until totally blended
- Pour the mixture into the chilled dish, and leave in the freezer overnight or until firm. You’ve just made avocado ice cream
If you’re looking to end the night with a fun, fruity drink, look no further than the avocado margarita. If you’re still waiting for your avocados to ripen, leave them overnight in a bag with a banana. The fumes from the banana will accelerate the ripening process, and you’ll be that much closer to this delicious drink.
- Cut 1 large avocado in half, remove the skin and pit, and place both avocado halves in an electric blender
- Add 230 ml of tequila blanco, 180 ml of triple sec, juice from 1 lime, a few sprigs of finely-chopped coriander, 50 ml of lime zest and 600 ml of crushed ice into the blender
- Blend until the mixture is smooth
- Lightly salt the rim of your glass, and enjoy your tropical-tasting treat
Looking for more healthy eating ideas to help you balance happy and healthy? Sign up to our newsletter. Once a month, you’ll get recipes, blogs and other helpful tips sent straight to your inbox. Bon appetit!