Step aside, apples -- avocado love is ripe for the picking. Fans have rallied around this once-feared source of healthy fat, and even better, recent studies have touted a positive trend between avocado consumption and overall diet quality.
Half an avocado a day is the ideal prescription, but you can eat it any time you'd like. In fact, you'll be delighted to know there's a place for it everywhere from breakfast to dessert. These recipes will have you wondering why you've been limiting yourself to guacamole all these years. Good thing you know better now.
Related: Easy, Every Day Meatless Recipes
Fruit Salad with Avocado
Most of us wouldn't call fruit salad a meal. This version, made hearty with walnuts and topped with a dollop of yogurt or fromage blanc, is an exception.
Pink grapefruit segments
Fromage blanc or plain yogurt
1. Combine avocado cubes with pink grapefruit segments, blackberries, and walnuts in a bowl. Spoon plain yogurt or fromage blanc on top, and drizzle with honey.
Hard-Boiled Egg Whites with Avocado
You've heard it before, and we'll say it again: Fat is not the enemy! Avocados replace egg yolks in this heart-healthy riff on egg salad.
8 large eggs
2 avocados, preferably Hass
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
Freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1. Cover eggs with cold water in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove pan from heat. Let eggs stand, covered, 8 minutes; transfer with a slotted spoon to an ice-water bath, and let cool. Peel eggs. Separate yolks from whites (reserve yolks for another use).Tear whites into 1-inch pieces; divide among four bowls.
2. Halve and pit the avocados. Using a spoon, scrape out pieces; divide among bowls with egg whites. Divide salt among servings, and season with pepper. Drizzle each serving with 3/4 teaspoon oil.
Like a drinkable face mask, this barely sweetened smoothie will help you glow from the inside out. Elixir of life, indeed.
1 ripe Hass avocado (about 7 ounces)
1/2 cup silken tofu drained
1 cup pear juice
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups ice
1. Quarter, pit, and peel avocado. Process avocado, tofu, juice, honey, and vanilla in a blender until smooth. Add ice; blend until smooth. Divide among 4 glasses.
Avocado with Lemon and Olive Oil
When snack time rolls around, avocados don't need much to make them sing. Feeling adventurous? Opt for a drizzle of honey or Sriracha (rooster sauce) instead.
2 ripe Hass avocados
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, or to taste
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 1 lemon)
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1. Halve avocados lengthwise. Twist halves to separate them, and remove pits. Run a large spoon between the flesh and skin, scooping out the flesh in one piece; discard skins. Slice into wedges, and place avocados on a serving platter. Drizzle with oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature.
Lemon Tuna Avocado Snack
If you find yourself flagging between meals, try this tuna salad that's lightly dressed, Italian-style. Equal parts protein and healthy fat are sure to revive you.
1 ripe avocado
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 six-ounce solid albacore tuna, in spring water
1 tablespoon sunflower seeds
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)
1. Halve avocado lengthwise, and remove the pit. Scoop out 2 tablespoons avocado flesh from each half, and leave the shells with the remaining flesh intact.
2. Mash the 4 tablespoons avocado with lemon juice and olive oil until smooth. Toss with tuna, sunflower seeds, half the lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste. Fill halves with tuna mixture, and garnish with remaining lemon zest and basil, if desired. Serve immediately with a spoon.
Banana Avocado Dip with Plantain Chips
Banana and avocado? Believe it. You won't believe you've never put them together before.
4 to 6 cups canola oil
2 green plantains, peeled, very thinly sliced
1 very ripe banana
1 small ripe avocado, peeled and pitted
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1. Place oil in a 3-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Attach a deep-fry thermometer to side of pan, and heat oil to 380 degrees. Carefully drop plantain slices into oil one at a time. Cook in batches until golden brown. Transfer to paper towels with a slotted spoon; let drain while finishing batches. (Adjust heat to keep temperature constant, if necessary, during cooking.) Sprinkle with salt; set aside.
2. Make dip: Place banana, avocado, and lemon juice in bowl; mash with fork. Season with salt; serve with plantain chips.
There's no hiding the green in this refreshing and unusual dessert. If you can drink a smoothie, you can handle this. Which brings us back to breakfast. What a day.
1/2 cup whole milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
1/2 cup sugar
4 strips orange zest
2 ripe Hass avocados, halved, pitted, and peeled
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus wedges for serving
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1. Prepare an ice-water bath. Whisk whole milk with cornstarch in a bowl.
2. Whisk together fat-free milk, sugar, and orange zest in a saucepan, and bring to a simmer. Add cornstarch mixture, and cook, whisking, until mixture bubbles and thickens, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove orange zest. Set in ice-water bath to cool.
3. Puree avocados, lime juice, salt, and milk mixture in a food processor.
4. Freeze the avocado mixture in an ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer to an airtight container, and freeze for at least 3 hours (or up to 2 weeks). Spoon 2 scoops of gelato into each bowl, and serve with lime wedges for squeezing.
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