Keeping Your Guac Green

I truly feel there are fewer things more frustrating than having an amazing batch of guacamole, and having it turn brown.

I mean don’t get me wrong, I have gone into MANY a guac coma to prevent any precious avocado-y goodness going brown.  However, I also love just having guacamole around for meals and snacks.

Avocados (like apples) turn brown because of oxidation!  Avocados and apples (and others) contain polyphenol oxidase which is an enzyme that catalyzes the enzymatic browning that occurs.

Long story short when the polyphenol oxidase and air come into contact they undergo a reaction that ultimately produces melanin (creates the browning).


I have tried many different things to prevent this browning: extra salt, and excessive lime juice.  This works “ok” but if you are particular about taste, it get’s very “limey”, also it does not work as well as:




Water is the magic ingredient to keep your guacamole perfectly green- water inhibits the reaction described above, which leaves you with this beautiful green guac without the expense of excess salt and/or limes.

Am I late to the party in using this trick?!? 

This is my homemade guac about 36 hours after I made the original batch

All you need to do is make your guacamole as you normally would, then transfer whatever you don’t eat right away into a bowl.  Then when you’re ready to put it in the refrigerator, pour about an inch of lukewarm water on the top of the guacamole.

When you’re ready to eat more, dump off some of the water (stir in the remaining), then enjoy your guac.  Personally this method has let me stretch my guacamole out 48 hours (it is usually all gone by that time) without running into brown areas.  Once you pour off the water you can stir any excess water right into the guacamole.

I won’t leave a recipe for guacamole as different people are picky of the various ratios of common ingredients- for instance Pat is not a huge fan of cilantro, so when I make it for the two of us the cilantro is a bit understated.

I do think really amazing guacamole contains all of the following:

  1. avocados
  2. diced red onion
  3. cilantro
  4. salt
  5. lime juice

Anything beyond that is on you!.

Ok but you get the protocol right?  Make guac, eat guac, cover leftover guac in a layer of lukewarm water, eat more when you’re ready within about 2- maybe 3 days.

I feel like this is such an amazing discovery! I am sometimes picky about texture with avocado, but I always love guacamole on toast, chips, veggies, and just having it available for a taco night.

So an important thing to note. Because of water and potential promotion of bacterial growth- I would NOT recommend extending this method with the water past 48 hours. 

Again, maybe I am SUPER late to discovering this trick, but it does work, and I could not be happier about it! 

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