How to Determine Whether an Avocado Is Rotten – When Does Brown Avocado Indicate Bad Avocado?

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As wonderful as avocados are, it should be noted that determining whether they are rotten is not always straightforward. I describe how avocados may appear and smell when they are OK to eat but, perhaps more crucially, when they are becoming bad to help you identify whether your avocado is merely from an immature tree, overripe, or ready for discarding.

How to Tell If an Avocado Is Ripe

Avocados, unlike some other fresh vegetables, do not begin to ripen until they are taken off the tree. After gathered, they begin to ripen fast, which is why they should be refrigerated to delay ripening at home.

When inspecting the maturity of an avocado in the shop, at the farmers market, or even at home, gently press the avocado with your palm rather than your fingers, since finger squeezing is more likely to cause damage to the fruit.

If the avocado does not yield in your hand at all, it is underripe; if it gives somewhat, it is ready to eat. If a little imprint remains after the squeeze, the fruit is overripe and should be reserved for mashing rather than slicing.

Several avocado cultivars change color as they mature. Hass avocados ripen from brilliant green to dark green or even brown when they are underripe. A Hass avocado with almost black skin is usually overripe, and a fully black avocado may be rotten. Some avocado kinds, such as Fuerte or Zutano, may remain brilliant green throughout ripening, therefore skin color cannot be used to determine ripeness.

When purchasing any variety of avocado, avoid those with cracks or mold on the outside, since the mold may have broken through the skin and reached the flesh of the fruit.

When cutting into a ripe avocado, the flesh should be bright green, with slight browning or bruising.

What Does A Bad Avocado Look Like?

As an avocado begins to overripen, it begins to feel soft, similar to an overripe tomato, and the skin begins to seem dented or mushy.

When you cut into an overripe avocado, the flesh will be deeper in color and may have bruising. Bruising refers to dark patches or blotches that might form in the flesh, and a bruised avocado is not necessarily undesirable.

Avocados picked from younger trees may sometimes have black streaks in the flesh, although the avocados themselves are ripe and safe to consume. Just trim away any stains or bruises before eating.

Similarly, depending on how it was developed, an avocado may be fibrous, and avocados from young trees are generally stringy until the tree grows (which may be as long as seven years). They may even be stringy as a result of improper storage after harvesting.

One of the key things to look for in damaged avocados is a lot of brown spots or patches within the avocado or even black flecks inside the avocado. There are indicators of mold, which may cause the avocado to appear white.

It is just as essential to smell an avocado as it is to look at it to determine whether it is rotten. But, if you have seen white or gray mold on or in the avocado, don’t bother smelling it, simply throw it away since the mold may have infiltrated throughout the fruit. When an avocado ripens, its scent changes from sweet and nutty to unpleasant, sour, or even rotten. Any avocado that smells off should be discarded.

After you’ve taken a close look at your avocado and are pleased with its sight and scent, just taste it. If it tastes good, go ahead and eat it; if in doubt, toss it away!

Why Brown Avocado Does Not Always Mean Bad

As I shown in the last section, avocados may have dark bruises or even brown streaks, and if there are no other indicators of deterioration, these avocados are often safe to consume.

As you cut into an avocado, it will quickly turn brown, exactly like when you chop into an apple. This is because oxidation happens when the flesh of the fruit is exposed to air. Polyphenols in the fruit react with oxygen in the air and enzymes called polyphenol oxidase, causing the brown color to appear. While browning is unappealing, it actually helps the avocado last longer because the browning products are poisonous to the bacteria that would otherwise cause the fruit to rot.

Therefore you may eat dark avocado even a few days after cutting it. The brown section may taste somewhat bitter and seem less appealing, but it is still safe to consume. To hide the dark meat, mash it all together rather than slice it. Browning avocado might also be used in smoothies or salad dressings.

Early oxidation of avocado and other fruits is innocuous, but as time passes, the oxidation progresses until it affects the flesh of the fruit, altering its texture and taste.

After slicing one avocado, cover the exposed flesh with lemon juice and store it in an airtight container, such as an avocado saver, in the refrigerator.

Can You Eat an Overripe Avocado?

Since avocado ripens from the stem end downwards, even if it is overripe at the stem end, the fruit may still be edible farther down. If there is no mold and it smells and tastes OK, just cut away the discolored pieces and use the rest.

Overripe avocado may be used in smoothies, guacamole, or even baked goods, but if you don’t want to consume it, mash it up with some coconut oil for a nutritious DIY hair conditioner!

What Happens If You Eat A Bad Avocado?

If you thoroughly inspect an avocado before eating it, chances are you did not eat a poor avocado; rather, you may have contracted a foodborne disease or the avocado aggravated an existing health issue.

Avocados should be carefully cleaned before use since the outer skin may be infected with germs such as listeria or salmonella, which may move into the flesh when the avocado is sliced, resulting in foodborne disease.

Avocado is also not recommended for pregnant or nursing women since it might interfere with milk production and create an upset stomach in the infant.

Avocado may induce bloating in those who have stomach issues or allergies, and anybody who has a latex allergy should avoid eating avocado since it might provoke an allergic response. Avocado consumption may also exacerbate hypersensitivity in people who are already hypersensitive, and avocado responses have been seen in those who are allergic to birch pollen.

If you consume a contaminated avocado, you are likely to have foodborne disease symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

To Sum Up

As a result, determining whether an avocado is rotten is not always simple. The skin of an avocado should be free of mildew and fissures, with no deep or mushy dents. It may have also changed color depending on the variety of avocado, but a black Hass avocado is overripe and possibly rotting.

When you cut into an avocado, although there may be some bruising or dark streaks, the majority of the flesh should be light in color and free of mold. It should smell like avocado, not sour or putrid.

In conclusion, while it is not always simple to tell when an avocado is rotten from the exterior, you will be able to determine whether an avocado is bad by look, smell, and even taste, and if you have gone through all of the procedures above and you are still unsure, throw it away rather than risking it!


Is avocado OK to eat after it turns brown?

It’s a chemical reaction, not an indication of ruined avocado. Chemicals in the flesh combine with oxygen, aided by enzymes, to generate brown pigments known as melanin. The brown section of an avocado may seem unappealing and may taste harsh, but it is still edible.

Is it OK to eat overripe avocado?

It has a mushy and squishy feel to it.

An avocado is beyond its prime if you can see a dent where you squeezed it. A little indent may suggest that it is overripe but still edible, however large dents or feeling the fruit crush within the skin signal that it will not be edible.

What does an overripe avocado look like?

The shell darkens to black.

The avocado becomes dark green and brown as it ripens. If the skin progressively becomes a dark brown to black, this is an indication that the avocado has gone rotten on the interior and is no longer edible.

How long before avocado turns bad?

If you refrigerate an unripe avocado, it may gradually mature, but the texture and flavor may suffer. If your avocado is ripe, store it whole and uncut in an airtight container or in the refrigerator’s produce drawer. It should last around two weeks, depending on how ripe it was when it went in.

Is it OK to eat avocado with brown strings?

As previously stated, the threads do no damage and have no effect on the taste or nutritional benefits of the avocado. All of the monounsaturated fats, fiber, vitamin E, potassium, and folate are still present.

Can I eat avocado after color change?

The color shift is caused by oxidation, a chemical process that happens when an avocado is exposed to air, and it’s not appealing. It also has a bad flavor. The Hass Avocado Board recommends against consuming avocado pieces that have oxidized or become brown.

What can I do with brown avocado?

12 Recipes Using Overripe Fruit Avocado
01 of 12 Avocado Salad Ranch Dressing…. 02 of 12 Avocado Dressing…. 03 of 12 Avocado Dressing. Avocado Irish Cream Fudge…. 05 of 12. Avocado Smoothie…. 06 of 12. Thick and Gooey Avocado Brownies. Avocado Blueberry Smoothie…. 08 of 12. Coconut Avocado Smoothie. Pudding with Chocolate Avocado.
Additional detailsɉۢJanuary 18, 2021

How do restaurants keep avocados from turning brown?

The water bath procedure keeps the sliced avocado from being exposed to oxygen. Put the avocado slices in a dish of cold water. Avocados will not turn brown if they are soaked in water for no more than 4 hours. When preparing avocados ahead of time, most chefs employ this procedure.

Why does avocado turn brown so fast?

Avocados contain an enzyme known as polyphenol oxidase, which causes the flesh to brown when exposed to air—specifically, oxygen. To keep its wonderful green hue, the flesh of an avocado must be shielded from oxygen exposure.

How do you tell if an avocado is good without opening it?

When the avocado responds to firm, mild pressure, it is ripe and ready to consume. Ripe, ready-to-eat avocados may be deeper in color, but color may vary, so go by feel as much as color. It will feel somewhat soft but not “mushy” to the touch.

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