The Flour Hack To Quickly Ripen An Avocado

Avocados are quite the beloved fruit, and for good reason. With a beautiful, spring green color and a buttery, rich flavor, they make for a delicious and satisfying way to amp up any dish — from making simple sourdough avocado toast to topping off savory chickpea pancakes. This is why it is such a disappointment when you arrive at the grocery store to find that only rock-hard avocados are available. Sometimes, you just can't wait for that avocado to ripen on its own. We're here with a better way: burying it in flour.

It may sound unorthodox, but science backs this technique up. The way avocados — and much other produce — ripen is by using a gas called ethylene. Ethylene gas is released by the avocado, which then in turn tells the avocado to finish maturing. As such, the best way to speed up the ripening process is to expose the avocado to as much of its own ethylene as possible. Surrounding an avocado in flour achieves this by creating a sort of chamber in which all of the ethylene is kept directly around the fruit rather than dissipating into the air. At the same time, the flour absorbs any moisture that might otherwise cause the avocado to mold, which is a risk in other airtight containers that one could use.

How to use this ripening method

To successfully leverage this hack, start by placing the unripe avocado in a paper bag. Next, add a few cups of flour to the bag. It is not an exact science, but you will want to add enough flour to cover the avocado on all sides. Close the bag and leave it in a room-temperature area of your kitchen. If done properly, your avocado will become completely ripe in about two days. Rinse off the avocado, pat it dry, and then enjoy it as you would any other.

This approach is convenient and easy to do, especially since most people always have flour on hand in their pantry. It is worth noting, however, that you should not reuse the flour from this hack once the process is complete. While it may be tempting to do so, it is not a safe option, as the flour may have been contaminated with pathogens that will make you sick.