Avocados are truly delicious, but they have an extremely short ripeness window. All too often you can forget to eat an avocado in time and it'll be a mushy brown mess once you slice it open. It's a common problem and with our increasingly busy lives, and it's far too easy to miss the precious ripeness window.
If you're guilty of tossing these fruits into the bin at the first shade of brown make sure you read these amazing uses for gone off avocados. There are so many incredible uses, you'll never throw away a gone off avocado again. Well, without putting it to good use first of course. Enjoy!
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1. Brew a soothing cup of avocado tea
Most people toss the seed of an avocado presuming it's inedible but New York City nutritionist Amy Shapiro, of Real Nutrition NYC, claims it's actually the most nutrient-rich part. According to Shapiro they are packed full of antioxidants and fibre and can be drunk in tea or blended down and added into smoothies for an extra nutritional kick, but more on that later.
With soluble fiber, they are great for soothing bowel inflammation and an upset tummy so make a hot tea using the seed. To make avocado tea using the seed, wash and carefully chop it using a sharp knife (be very careful, it can be tough to chop into). Chop it into small chunks and immediately place into a strainer before placing in freshly boiled water.
Avocado seed tea can taste quite bitter so add a small teaspoon of honey to sweeten it up. If you enjoy it, dehydrate the avocado seed first and you'll be able to store it away for future use. To do this, simply rinse the seed and place it in the oven at 120 celsius for 2 hours until the outer skin has completely dried off. Once it's completely cooled, remove the dry outer skin and chop the stone into chunks and store in a sealed container.
2. Use avocado seeds for massage
Avocado seeds are smooth, hard and just the right size for a foot massage! So when your avocado can't be used any longer, all is not lost when you save the seeds. Place a few in a shallow bowl and roll your feet over them for a lovely, relaxing effect.
Even better, warm them up in hot water and use them as an alternative to hot stones - when applied with pressure to the skin they can really get into those tough muscle knots and help relieve muscle tension.
3. Make an avocado mug cake
When your avocado has turned brown in parts, what better way to disguise it than adding lots and lots of chocolate! Turn your sad avocado into something wonderful and treat yourself to this Scrumptious Avocado Chocolate Mug Cake. It takes less than 5 minutes to prepare and make yet tastes just like home-baked chocolate cake. Delicious.
- 4 1/2 tbsp plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 4 tbsp granulated white sugar
- 1/2 a mashed avocado
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 4 tbsp milk
- 1 large mug
In the mug, whisk all the ingredients together until you have a smooth batter. Place the mug in a microwave on medium heat for 2 minutes. Check its risen, and let it cool before dusting icing sugar on top. Mmm cake, enjoy!
4. Whip up a moisturising hair mask
Avocados are not only good for our insides but the outside too – it’s moisturising fats and high content of skin-nourishing Vitamin E means it’s great for healthy hair, skin and nails. Just because your avocado has gone bad doesn't mean it's lost all its vital nutrients, and when applied topically you'll still be able to reap the benefits. So when life gives you brown avocados, put it on your hair!
To make a moisturising hair mask from your browning avocado, simply combine and mash these ingredients together:
- 1/2 an avocado
- 1 tsp coconut oil or olive oil (optional)
Massage it into hair – if you have long hair tie it into a loose bun – and pop a shower cap on if you have one. This will help seal in the nutrients, and for optimum results take a nice hot bath. The steam will help penetrate your scalp and post-shampoo, you should be left lovely soft locks.
5. Make a plant-boosting compost
If you’re green fingered, make a good compost for fertilising your plants with your overripe avocados. The skin can take a long time to break down so if you’re in a hurry scoop out the flesh and remove the pit before slicing the avocado up but if you’re not too bothered with timings, add the skin and pit. It’ll all just take different times to break down. Your plants will love this superfood just as much as you do.
6. Make your own body scrub
Dehydrated avocado seed makes a great exfoliator when it's been grinded up! Dehydrate in the oven for 2 hours at 120 celsius before leaving it to cool. Remove the outer skin and chop it into chunks before grinding in a blender or chopper.
Add it to your normal shower gel or make your own using coconut oil, banana or even avocado. Simply mix all the ingredients together, add the stone grinds and apply to your body as you would a normal scrub. For more ideas on how to make your own beauty products, check out my article and meet the a list beauty products you already have in your kitchen.
7. Dye your clothes PINK
If you’ve sadly left an avocado to completely brown and you can’t make use of the rotting flesh, don’t feel too bad. You can still put the skin and stone to good use by dying your clothes - who knew? Avocados can act as a natural dye, and while you would expect this fruit to dye material green, it actually turns things a very pretty pink. Follow my step-by-step guide to dying your clothes with gone off avocados.
Step 1: Prepare the avocado skins and seed
Remove the flesh, before rinsing out your avocado skins and cutting them into strips. Carefully chop the seed into chunks using a meat cleaver or similar knife. Be very careful when doing this as it can be dangerous.
Step 2: Make sure your material is clean and dry
Make sure your material is nice and clean before dying it. The skin and seed from one avocado mixed with 2 pints of water is enough to dye a T-Shirt. We've used half quantities here to dye some scraps of material.
Step 3: Heat in a pan on a low heat to form the dye
Take a pot and fill it with water and add the avocado. Simmer the skins and seed with a lid on a low heat for 1 hour first then add the material for a further 1 hour. Be sure to stir the pot regularly to avoid burning the material. For our dye project we only used 1 pint of water, but if you use 2 pints you may need to simmer the material for longer.
Step 4: Soak your material overnight
Take the pot off the heat, remove the avocado skins and stone and leave the material to soak overnight in the dye. You should start to see what colour the material is turning after just a few hours but you'll want to leave it in the dye for as long as possible.
5. Let the material dry naturally and iron to set
In the morning, take your material and hang it up to dry naturally. When it's dried it should be a lovely pale pink colour! To set the colour, iron over the material a few times on a medium heat.
8. Use avocado peel as a moisturiser
Avocado contains nutrients and fatty acids that are fantastic for skin and hair and while most of these will be in the flesh, they can be found in the skins too. So when you're avocado is no longer fit for food, scoop the flesh out and gently rub the peel (flesh side) all over your face and body. Leave it for 20 minutes before washing it off in the shower. When you've dried off, your skin should be left lovely and smooth - no need for extra moisturiser!
There are all kinds of uses for peel so before you chuck it out, check it out - 25 astonishing uses for your fruit and vegetable peel.
9. Make the face mask celebrities LOVE
Victoria Beckham swears by this skin rejuvenator to perk up sallow skin, improve texture and even reduce fine lines. When your avocado is not good enough to eat, you can still apply it to your face. Just remove any rotting parts of the flesh and follow these simple instructions:
- Beat 1 apricot into a smooth paste using a fork or electric chopper
- Combine half a mashed avocado
Press the mask onto your skin and lie down for 30 minutes while the face mask penetrates your skin. You should feel a slight tingle! When the time has ended, wash your face thoroughly and pat dry.
10. Make a delicious avocado milkshake
We would never suggest eating rotten food for obvious reasons, but this milkshake can still be made with avocados that are over-ripe and browning. It also tastes great with avocados that are not yet ripe! Great for when you've sliced it up too early.
Make sure you scrape out any really brown bits of the avocado flesh when preparing your ingredients.
To serve 1 -2 people, you'll need:
- Small handful of ice cubes
- Flesh of 1 avocado
- 250ml milk
- 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream
- 3 tbsp caster sugar
- Squirty cream
Whizz up the ingredients together in a blender or smoothie maker and top with squirty cream. Serve in a tall tumbler or beautiful ombre jar.
Like this? You'll love our 7 really naughty milkshakes you can make with a NutriBullet.
11. Make your own unique jewellery
When your avocado has gone off and there's nothing left but the seed, make something super special. You can carve your own avocado pendant with just a few household tools, thanks to Christie Sommers at Art Star. Check out her easy-to-follow tutorial and learn how to make an avocado seed pendant.
12. Make a beautiful layered smoothie
When you're faced with a rapidly browning avocado, you could mash it up into guacamole or you can make this spectacular layered smoothie! Just because your avocado a little brown doesn't mean you can't make something really special.
To make 2 smoothies, you'll need:
- 1 avocado
- Handful of fresh kale
- 3 cubes of frozen spinach
- 1 large banana
- Ice cubes
- 1/2 cup of apple juice
- Handful of brazil nuts
- Handful of almond
- Pinch of matcha
- Cup of milk
1. Using a blender or smoothie maker, blend half the kale, 2 cubes of spinach, half the ice cubes and apple juice until smooth. Pour 3/4 of the mixture into two cups and place in the freezer for an hour.
2. For the second layer blend take the greenest parts of your avocado and blitz with the remaining kale, 1 cube of spinach, half the ice cubes, brazil nuts, almonds, half the banana and a pinch of matcha. Spoon the mixture carefully on top of the base layer and pop back in the freezer to set slightly.
3. For the top layer of your smoothie blend the rest of your banana with the cup of milk. To thicken it up you can add more banana or coconut milk. Spoon over the two layers and leave it to melt slightly.
You can enjoy this beautiful drink as a frozen 'slushy' smoothie or you can wait for it to defrost slightly - don't worry when melted the layers will remain intact!
13. Use the seeds for outdoor fun & games
If you love avocados, save the seed from both ripe and gone off fruits. Dry and bake them in the oven to help them last longer and varnish them to protect against moisture. You could even paint them! Use them to play lawn games such as boules and petanque, or use them as juggling balls. The kids will love playing with these avocado seeds, guaranteed.
For more ways to entertain the little ones, check out Colleen's article 17 super fun ways to keep the kids busy at the weekend.
14. Grind the seed to boost smoothies
According to OMTimes, the avocado seed has multiple health benefits and can help inflammation of the GI tract and diarrhoea too. In South America, the stone is used for dysentery and other GI tract issues. If you want to learn more about the health benefit, check out their article 13 great benefits of eating avocado seeds.
The easiest way to eat the seed is to grind it up and add it to smoothies. Not only does it give your smoothie some added texture, but with its several nutrients including calcium, magnesium and potassium, it's a lot cheaper than expensive supplements. You can cut up the stone using a heavy knife and grind up the chunks in your smoothie maker or blender. will start to turn orange very quickly so you'll need to add it to your smoothie asap. It may start to release tannins so you don't want to leave it out for too long.
It'll start to turn orange very quickly so you'll need to add it to your smoothie asap. It may start to release tannins so you don't want to leave it out for too long. The other option is to dehydrate the stone before grinding it up - this option takes longer but you'll be able to store it for future use!
15. For decorations and ornaments
Avocado seeds are the perfect shape for arts and crafts. Dry them out in the oven before setting to work! You can carve them out to make candle holders, make a wind chime or even make your own Christmas decorations. Simply paint and decorate, then screw in a crafting hook on the top of the seed before looping through a ribbon. They also make great eggs at Easter, round up the kids and having an egg painting session!
16. Grow your own Avocado house plant
Got a browning Avocado on your hands? Grow your own Avocado houseplant! Sadly it's very unlikely to grow any avocado fruits, but with their shiny vibrant leaves this houseplant that will bring a beautiful touch of green to your home. To make your own, you just remove the stone and follow the instructions found at Inhabit.
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Thank you Anushka. I don't know how many times we've thrown away avos at my house. I promise you we've done it for the last time before today! Because we love avocado so much we're even growing our own tree from the stone. It's still young at this stage but progressing very well. I've heard about the avocado hair treatment countless times but it never occured to me to use the avo when we bin one! I can't wait to try the cup cake and I bet it will be a hit in our house from now on! I can never thank you enough - call this my "Aha! moment".
Haha! I'm so pleased to hear this. I love avocados too - you're so lucky you can growing your own tree - I hope it grows well! Yes please do try the hair mask it is really good and puts that browning Avo to good use. Enjoy the cake x
Avocado, 1 egg, tbs. Olive oil, tbs. raw honey. Mix all ingredients until smooth, creamy. There will be some lumps. This is an awesome hair mask, left overs i put on my face. To stimulate hair growth add ground cayenne pepper. About 10 capsules ( but dont put that on face or get in eyes !)
Hi Rhonda. Thanks for your fab beauty tips! We LOVE avocados and will definitely be trying some of these :)
Yep I'm guilty of binning too many avo's, so interested in the tips. Using the stone for tea and smoothies sounded great, until I read needed to cut the stone by hand. No thanks, far to risky. However, the seed does have a lovely shape, so maybe, just maybe little Easter decorations.
Hi there. Easter decorations sound like a lovely idea - maybe next year hey! Thanks for stopping by :)
I absolutely love the idea of using it the stones for decorations. I always find Christmas decorations extortionate (and my Christmas tree is always pretty bare as a result) so will definitely have a go at making tree decorations out of them!
Hi Laura. Christmas decorations certainly are expensive, plus it's great to be able to customise your baubles yourself. I hope you have lots of success with them! :)
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