Avocados are a very popular fruit, and there’s no doubt about their versatility. But many people don’t know how to store them properly, creating expensive waste.
This article will discuss how long avocados last when they’ve been cut and peeled, as well as discussing ways to store them and keep them fresh.
Avocados will not ripen until picked from the tree, so if you’re planning to eat your avocado in a few days, you can buy it firm and ripen it at home. But if you want to store and eat the avocado, later on, you’ll need to handle it with a bit of care.
How long does a cut avocado last?
Cut avocado lasts around 2 hours at room temperature, 2-3 days in the fridge, or several months in the freezer.
The lifespan of a cut avocado
An avocado’s lifespan can vary dramatically depending on how it’s been treated after being cut and how ripe it is.
At room temperature, a cut avocado will usually last around two hours.
If stored in the fridge, it can be kept fresh for 2-3 days.
Regardless of the storage method, remove that section before enjoying the rest if part of an avocado starts to turn brown.
How should I store my avocado?
Uncut avocados should be kept at room temperature to aid ripening. If you want your avocado a few days before a special event, purchase one that is not ripe and let it sit out on your kitchen countertop. It will take about 5-7 days to reach peak ripeness at room temperature after it’s been picked from the tree.
How long can avocado sit out for?
After being cut, an avocado can sit out for approximately 2 hours at room temperature. It’s still edible after this time, but you’ll start to notice degradation in quality and an increased risk of bacterial contamination as time increases.
While it contains some oil, avocado doesn’t have the same fat content as something like olive oil. Therefore, your ripe avocados can sit out for longer than other fruits and vegetables that spoil more quickly at room temperature (like apples or tomatoes).
Can you put avocado in the fridge?
Yes, you can refrigerate avocado. The best way to store an avocado when you’re not eating it right away is in the refrigerator. You should keep any cut portions in a tightly sealed container with either plastic wrap or a lid pressed directly onto the surface of the flesh. This will prevent discoloration and oxidation from happening too quickly. The peel should be kept on until shortly before use.
Avocados will keep in the fridge in this kind of container for around 2-3 days. While it’s true that placing an avocado in a sealed container in the refrigerator can help slow down spoilage somewhat, there is still a risk of food poisoning from eating spoiled avocados. Therefore, it is best not to eat avocados past their prime to be safe.
Can I freeze avocado?
Yes, if you want to store your cut avocado for longer than 2-3 days, freezing may be a good option for you. You can either freeze or refrigerate before cutting and then pop them into the freezer after they’ve been prepped. The texture will change slightly due to oxidation occurring while frozen, but many people find it just as tasty.
Freezing avocados is also a great way to deal with the ripe fruit you want for cooking or baking later. Just make sure the avocado has been peeled, pitted, and cut before freezing.
How long does avocado last in the freezer?
An avocado will last in the freezer for around 3-5 months if kept at -18°C.
Will an avocado turn brown after I cut it?
Yes, but that’s normal. Avocado oxidizes quickly due to the healthy fats found within them. The more air that comes into contact with your avocado flesh, the faster it will degrade. That means you’ll want to keep any leftovers tightly wrapped up and store them in an airtight container as quickly as possible.
It’s also important not to leave your avocados out of the fridge for too long since they are sensitive to bacteria. If your avocados have been cut or sliced, don’t leave them out for longer than 2 hours. If you’re planning on eating them later in the day, pop them into a container and back into the fridge until you’re ready to use them.
Ways to keep avocado fresh after being cut
If you have an avocado that’s nearly ripe but not quite ready yet, here are some tips on keeping it fresh.
Store your avocado next to apples or tomatoes in your fridge. The ripening agent ethylene can build up quickly in some kinds of produce storage containers, causing some items (like avocados) to spoil faster than others. Keeping them separate will prevent this from happening as much.
You can wrap your avocado tightly with tinfoil to prolong freshness.
You can also place your avocado in a paper bag at room temperature, which will help eliminate moisture loss and slow down the rate of ripening. And don’t forget to keep the pit in there too.
If you’re using your avocado within a few days, leave it on the counter, where it will continue to ripen naturally. If you’d like for it not to ripen quite as quickly, though, placing a banana or apple in with your avo will produce more ethylene gas than if they were by themselves (this is how some grocery stores accelerate their fruit display).
If you’re taking extra care that nothing’s touching the avocado flesh at all times while you’re storing them, you can use a paper towel to cover the top. This will help prevent anything from getting inside the skin and causing discoloration or bacterial contamination.
While it might seem like an odd thing to do, storing your avocado with an onion (cut in half) will act as another form of preservative. Keep your cut avocado halves wrapped tightly with plastic wrap until ready to eat. Then you can take them both out together at room temperature for about 20-30 minutes before serving (and remove the pit too).
What are the signs that an avocado is bad?
A brown color
One indicator is the color. A brown avocado might not be as ripe as a green one or might need to ripen further. And if you see any browning on the skin, this is a sign that your fruit has been exposed to oxygen and should probably be eaten soon.
An eggy smell
The smell can also be a rotten egg. If there’s a funky smell coming from your avocado, it could have gone bad. Also, watch out for black mold growing around the pit. This will usually show itself at least partially even before things go bad inside the flesh.
A leathery texture
Dryer avocados will generally spoil faster than those with higher moisture content. So if you’re buying avocados from the store and they feel dry, they’ll likely only last about 5 -7 days at best.
As long as you’re following proper food safety measures when handling and storing your avocado, it should be good to go for 2-3 days max if the pit is removed and you put it in the fridge. That’s enough time to use in a few healthy recipes or even enjoy with a bit of salt and pepper.
What color should an avocado be?
It depends. As an avocado ripens, it goes through several very distinct stages of color change. It has more chlorophyll content than ripe fruit when it is very green. Then as the avocado ripens further, it will become darker and develop a deeper green color. At around 70% of maximum ripeness, an avocado will go from dark to light green, indicating that it’s turning over to the next stage.
As an avocado matures even more, its skin will turn yellow-green or browner in color – this indicates high amounts of carotenoids which are indicators of ripe fruit. It’s easy to tell when an unripe avocado is ready because its dark spots start turning yellowish-brown in color.
Are brown spots safe on an avocado?
It depends on the browning. If it’s just the skin being affected, then no worries – these spots are usually just oxidized chlorophylls that will disappear when you cut into them anyway.
If there is any brown color inside, it might indicate bacterial contamination or bruising. To prevent either from happening, try to store your avocado at room temperature instead of in the fridge so that its flesh doesn’t become too cold and stay firm before you want to use it.
How to safely store avocado after it has been cut
The safest way to store avocado is to keep it in the refrigerator.
Putting cut avocado in a container with a good seal will keep out air and other contaminants, prolonging shelf life even more. If you have a vacuum sealer, you can keep it fresh for longer by removing airborne pathogens.
If left at room temperature, cut avocados will last a few hours before they start to go bad. However, avocados don’t last much longer than 3-5 days, even when refrigerated. So if you’re going on vacation or won’t be home for a while, buying an extra avocado might not be such a bad idea.
The Perfect Storage Container for Avocados
The best container for avocados is the one that will protect the fruit from air and contaminants until you’re ready to eat it [or make some guacamole.]. If you have a vacuum sealer, it can be a perfect way to prevent contamination.
Otherwise, use a container with a good seal. Avocados are heavy and can bruise easily, so choose a sturdy container if possible.
How to store a cut avocado without a refrigerator?
Avocado halves that have been cut and removed from the pit can be wrapped in plastic or aluminum foil to hold them for several days.
If you’re going on vacation, it might be a good idea to buy an extra avocado just before leaving so that you’ll have one at home when you return.
Don’t keep a cut avocado in a container with a loose lid because there’s still plenty of oxygen inside them – they won’t last very long without being kept away from air. If your container isn’t sealed well enough, there’s still going to be oxygen inside of it, so don’t expect too much shelf life out of your avocados, even if they’ve been put into the fridge.
How to keep a cut avocado fresh?
The best way to keep an avocado fresh is to remove the pit. Removing the pit makes it easier for you to rub lemon juice on the flesh of your avocado, which will slow down its natural browning process.
Another way to keep a cut avocado fresh is to store it in oil.
How long does a cut avocado last if you’ve put it in water?
Even when refrigerated, avocados are more likely to turn brown within one week, so putting them in water won’t help much. It will likely expose the fruit to more pathogens and make it soggy. Keep your cut avocados covered with plastic or foil while you’re waiting to eat them. This will prevent air from reaching the fruit and any contaminants that might get inside of it.
Avocado Myths Busted
Is putting a leaf in an avocado’s flesh bad?
This widely spread myth about avocados being toxic dates back to when they were first commercially grown in California during the 1920s.
Some types of leaves are toxic to humans, but avocados are not among them.
The leaves may be toxic to animals, but human consumption isn’t an issue.
Does removing an avocado’s pit make it last longer?
No. The seed in an avocado acts as a barrier to bacteria and oxygen. When you remove it, you’re removing one of avocados best defenses against spoilage.
That’s not to say that you can’t store them with their pits still intact – remember that your cut pieces won’t last as long.
Does putting guacamole in the fridge keep it from turning brown?
Yes. It’ll be fresher after it sits for several hours in the cold air inside your fridge because all of the vegetable enzymes will stay intact.
Does storing guacamole in a whipped cream dispenser keep it fresher for longer?
Yes. Most of these use nitrous oxide canisters to preserve the avocado paste and prevent oxidation.
Other types of devices can help with making your guacamole last longer – check out some fermenting crocks or au-naturel containers.
Suggested equipment for keeping avocados fresh
Put an avocado half in a freezer bag and squeeze the air out of it before sealing. You’ll retain more flavor this way because you won’t have to use as much lemon juice. Just cut the bag open to get at your fruit whenever you’re ready to eat it. There’s no need for a vacuum sealer here.
Food saver containers
You can keep a whole avocado fresh by removing its pit and placing it into one of these reusable containers. They work by trapping the oxygen inside with flexible rubberized flaps, so they might be worth looking into if you want something that will last beyond just one avocado half.
Ziploc bags, zip-top bags, or plastic containers
You’ll need to cover your avocados with some lid so they don’t dry out or absorb other flavours, but you can use whatever works best for your situation – make sure you squeeze the air out and keep your fruit covered while it decides how long does a cut avocado last?