Guac IS extra

Guac 4 ways!! In this house, guac is ALWAYS extra. As much as I’m a sweets girl, the one salty food that I can’t stop eating is guac with chips. By definition, guacamole is an avocado based dip, and while most of the time, I just mix lime & salt with avocado, I have a few recipes up my sleeve to make it extra special.

These recipes provide unique flavors that pair with a variety of Mexican meals, AND, all of the unique additions help extend your avocado to feed more people. One or two avocados go a lot further when you are adding toppings! When I lived in California, I had access to endless FREE avocados. If did have to buy them, they were always cheap. Once I moved back to Michigan, I could not believe that a bad avocado could cost more than a gallon of gas. But for as much as I make Mexican food (or avocado toast), no guac is not an option.

Also I remember once when Qdoba was out of guac because of an avocado shortage, and it was sad. Remember when guac cost extra? The worst.

Guacamole Sol copycat with delicious Trader Joe’s Elote Corn Dippers!

I have put together my 4 favorite jazzed up guacamole recipes for you to try! All of these recipes are flexible. With the additional ingredients, one avocado can feed 3-4 people, while when I use just avocado and lime, I serve that for two of us with tacos. Before you get started, these things will help you regardless of which guacamole recipe you make.

For every recipe, I use onion, lime, cilantro and salt. If you don’t like any of these ingredients, skip them. Every recipe is flexible; add more or less of each item to your tastes. Or what you remember to buy at the grocery store. Dice your additions as small as possible – the onions, tomato, pineapple, peppers, mango, etc. I like a lot of lime – if you don’t, use just half a lime and taste. The lime also helps keep the guacamole from browning immediately. The chef has every right to, and should be, testing the guac before serving! Put your chips in a bowl so no one knows you ate half of the bag to test the guac.

Before we get into the recipes, let’s talk avocados.

  1. Ripeness: Avocados go from too hard to too soft very quickly. They should be slightly soft to the touch. Your finger shouldn’t leave a huge indent with a light squeeze. But if there is no give, wait another day or two. All the banana in a paper bag or oven browning trips have never worked for me. Patience does. I always buy avocados a few days before I need them because there is no such thing as a perfectly ripe avocado, at the store, the day you need it.
  2. Storage: Once an avocado is slightly soft, if you aren’t going to use it that day, put it in the fridge. Do NOT refrigerate it before it’s soft or it will never ripen. Once it’s ripe, it will last several days in the fridge. If you happen to not use an entire avocado (which I don’t really understand?) – use these avocado food huggers and put a little lemon or lime juice on the cut half to keep it from browning.
  3. Cut: Remove the stem, and starting at the top, slice lengthwise around the pit. WATCH YOUR FINGERS. You do not want to nearly cut off your pinky tip and have to superglue your finger back together (merely an example, not speaking from experience at all).
  4. Smushing: If I want nice slices, I might slice the avocado in the skin and carefully spoon it out. Use a knife to remove the pit. Guac needs smushed avocado. So use the skin and help squeeze the good stuff into a bowl. Then use a fork to mash the avocado BEFORE you add the toppings because you do not want smushed tomatoes.

GUACAMOLE SOL

Earlier this week I posted about the Vampiro Taco, which is a copycat from my favorite California restaurant. I always order that taco, and I always order Guacamole Sol, which includes goat cheese & mango. Goat cheese & avocados were meant to be together! Here’s my version.

  • 1-2 large avocados
  • 1/2 onion, diced (red or white)
  • 1/2 mango, diced
  • 1 roma tomato, diced
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  • 1 fresh squeezed lime
  • 2-4 TBSP crumbled goat cheese
  • 2 TBSP pepitas / pumpkin seeds
  • Hefty grind of salt (to taste)

Add the onion, mango, tomato, goat cheese, and cilantro to the avocado and mix gently. Squeeze fresh lime, add salt to taste, mix gently again. Sprinkle with pepitas. Sol serves this with their heavily seasoned, fresh fried tortillas. I found that the Trader Joe’s Elote Corn Chip Dippers are a suitable dipper that remind me of being at Sol! This guacamole pairs well with steak tacos.

CARAMELIZED PINEAPPLE GUAC

Pineapple causes a lot of controversy on savory foods. I find it completely appropriate to put on pizza, on a burger, or in guacamole. Not everyone will agree with this – and that’s their loss. But to take it up a notch – caramelizing, or grilling the pineapple – leads to an even more intense sweet flavor.

Options for the pineapple: 1) canned slices 2) canned chunks 3) fresh slices 4) fresh chunks. Options for caramelizing the pineapple: 1) grill slices 2) spray the crap out of a pan and brown on the stovetop (pictured) 3) roast in the oven. Once your pineapple is caramelized, dice it into smaller pieces and cool before mixing into the avocado.

  • 1-2 avocados
  • 1/4 fresh pineapple, diced or sliced, or one small can sliced or diced pineapple, drained
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeno (optional), diced
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  • 1 fresh squeezed lime
  • Hefty grind of salt (to taste). Or try Trader Joe’s Chile Lime Seasoning!

Mix all ingredients and serve with lime tortilla chips! Tangy lime + sweet pineapple + salty chips = flavor explosion. I like this guacamole with pork-based Mexican meals!

FANCY GUAC

Fancy guac is really my “signature” guac, which I’ve been making for years. I call it fancy guac because I usually only make it for a crowd. You can add more or less pepper if you like spice! And use seasoned salt rather than regular salt!

  • 1-2 large avocados
  • 1/2 of a diced red onion
  • 1-2 diced jalapenos or serrano peppers
  • 2 diced roma tomatoes
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  • 1 fresh squeeze lime
  • Hefty shake of Seasoned Salt (to taste)

Mix all ingredients and season to taste. This is the most versatile guacamole recipe; I would serve it with any Mexican entree!

ROASTED CORN & GOAT CHEESE GUAC

One thing I look forward to each summer, besides not wearing a coat & boots and scrapping my car off or driving in snow, is fresh corn on the cob. I LOVE it. Grilled corn on the cob with excessive butter and salt is worth the lengthy flossing session you’ll need after dinner. But if you want the delicious taste of corn without the need to floss, roasted corn & goat cheese guac is a great choice. Plus, we learned from Guacamole Sol that goat cheese & avocado belong together. Cotija cheese is also a great option, especially if you forgot you ran out of goat cheese and don’t want to go to Trader Joe’s for the FOURTH TIME THIS WEEK. Just an example, of course.

To prepare the fresh corn, I grab a bundt pan, stick one end of the cob in the hole, and use a knife to remove the kernels. The pan helps catch the kernels while you cut, so you don’t spray them all over the kitchen. Using a small roasting pan, drizzle olive oil on the corn and season. Roast at 400 degrees for 15 minutes.

  • 1-2 avocados
  • 1 cob fresh corn, or 1 small can of corn, drained
  • Olive oil
  • Trader Joe’s Chile Lime seasoning, or chile powder, cumin & salt
  • 1/4 cup goat cheese crumbs or cotija cheese
  • 1/2 red onion, diced
  • 1 handful cilantro, chopped
  • 1 fresh squeeze lime
  • Hefty grind of salt (to taste)

Mix all ingredients – and again I recommend lime chips for serving. I just really love lime chips! The roasted corn is sweet and salty and adds complexity and texture to the guacamole. Pair with chicken or pork tacos or enchiladas.

Which fancy guac recipe will you try first?

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