If you love avocados and want to know whether or not you can eat the skin, I’m here to help!
Ok, so let’s talk avocados. The avocado is a fruit that has been shown to have many health benefits, such as being a great source of healthy fats.
Fruit and vegetable peels are known to contain lots of nutrients and can be a healthy part of your diet, but what’s the deal with the skin on avocados?
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Can you eat avocado skin?
The simple answer is yes, you can eat avocado skin. The peel of an avocado is perfectly safe to eat and will provide you with more nutrients than the flesh.
However, just because you can eat avocado skin, it doesn’t mean it will be the most pleasant experience. The taste of the skin can be quite bitter, and the texture is, well, kind of like the bark of a tree!
Fortunately, if you really want to try to eat avocado skin for its nutritional benefits, there are a few things that you can do to make it more palatable.
It can be crushed with a mortar and pestle or ground up in a blender. This way you’ll be able to incorporate it as a powder or smaller pieces into a smoothie, sauce, dip, salad, or other dish.
What is the best way to eat avocado skin?
There is no right or wrong way to eat avocado skin, just ways to make it taste better (or be less noticeable). Some people will enjoy it blended into a smoothie, while others prefer to toss flakes of it into salads.
If you have any recipes containing avocados that require removing the peel then you don’t need to throw them away.
You can add avocado peels in soups and stews for an extra boost of nutrients during colder months. This is a good way to soften the tough peels up a bit. Try adding them in with other veggies like carrots, celery, squash, or onions.
5 nutritional benefits of eating avocado skin
There are many nutritional benefits associated with eating avocado skin such as:
- Antioxidants: the skin contains a lot of antioxidants that can help prevent wrinkles and aging.
- Fiber: We all need plenty of fiber in our diets and it helps you feel fuller for longer so you end up eating less.
- Vitamins and minerals: avocado skin is a great source of Vitamin E, B-Complex Vitamins, Folate, Potassium, and Copper. These vitamins have been shown to lower the risk of heart disease and cancer while providing muscle growth benefits.
- Avocado skin also offers anti-inflammatory properties that reduce swelling in muscles after exercise or injury.
- It also contains both zeaxanthin and lutein which can help improve vision and protect your eyes from macular degeneration.
Can avocado skin be harmful if swallowed?
Most parts of an avocado contain a natural, oil-soluble fungicide called persin. Persin is not harmful to humans and can even be beneficial for our health.
Studies show that eating small quantities of avocado skin will not harm your health unless you’re allergic to them. If you’re allergic, then eating the skin could cause itching and swelling of the mouth or throat.
However, persin can be harmful to pets. Don’t let your pets eat avocado skin.
The only other instance in which avocado peels can be harmful is when they are contaminated with pesticides that have not been washed off properly.
This is why it’s very important to wash avocados thoroughly before cutting them open so you don’t ingest any chemicals along with their nutritious flesh.
What type of avocado has the best skin for eating?
The type of avocado you buy can affect how much of the skin is edible. Hass avocados have a bumpy, pebbled surface which makes them easier to peel and eat than other varieties.
Topa Topa and Mexicola varieties have much smoother and thinner skin. This means the skin is not as chewy and fibrous as other varieties, making it easier to eat.
What else can I do with avocado skin?
Most people will throw away avocado skins because they assume they’re not edible, or they don’t know what to do with them. If you’re looking for a way to use your leftover peels but don’t want to chew on the hard skin, then try one of these ideas:
Make Avocado Skin Tea – Place the skin into a jar and pour boiling water over it before letting it steep for at least an hour. Drink daily as needed.
Make Avocado Peel Face Mask – Mix together ½ teaspoon turmeric powder, 2-3 tbsp yogurt, and half an avocado peel that has been ground up.
Use as Pest Repellent – Fill bowls with mashed-up avocado skin and place around entrances of your home to prevent bugs from entering. This is a good chemical-free pest control solution.
Add to your compost. Add avocado peels to your compost for an extra boost of nutrients in the soil.
Find even more ideas for avocado peels over on Tasting Table.
How to tell if an avocado is ripe
The best way to tell if your avocado is ripe before you eat it, whether that be the skin or flesh, is by pressing on it with your thumb. If there’s a slight give and the stem part moves then it’s perfect for eating.
The stem can also help you determine what stage of ripeness your avocado is at as well as how long until it will go bad. Once upon picking from a tree, avocados need around four months to ripen completely so they reach their maximum flavor potential and nutritional value as well as becoming soft enough to eat.
I used to think that only dark-skinned avocados were ready to eat, but it’s not true! Even bright green-skinned fruits can be ripe enough. The key is to give the avocado a little squeeze. If you can press into it at all, it’s ready. If it feels very soft or mushy under the skin, it’s probably overripe.
Can you eat too much avocado?
While the nutritional benefits of avocado skin are plentiful, it’s always good to remember that moderation is key. The American Heart Association recommends eating one whole medium-sized avocado per day for a healthy diet. Avocados contain more fat and calories than most other fruits so keep that in mind.
Too much of anything is never a good idea so don’t go overboard with avocados or their skins. One serving should be more than enough in your daily diet while continuing to eat other fruits and vegetables as well for balanced health benefits.