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5 Ways to Use Avocados

Make Guacamole
A good guacamole is always a hit.
A good guacamole is always a hit.

You knew this was going to make the list, right? Guacamole has taken center stage as the premiere dip for special occasions (and it may be the only green ingredient your hubby actually looks forward to eating). It doesn't matter if it's game day, Cinco de Mayo or next Saturday, if you have guacamole, it's a party. The really great thing about this deluxe appetizer-cum snack-food is that it's good for you, too. You can't say that for a heaping bowl of nachos.

Sure, guacamole contains oil, but so do lots of other special occasion indulgences. Guacamole has the distinction of being a bona fide oxymoron, though -- a delicious health food. The oil is what makes avocados so creamy. It also contributes to the calorie count at around 276 calories per avocado (or possibly a bit more for oil rich Hass and Fuerte avocados). That's high, but think of it this way: You could be chowing down on cheese and crackers or sour cream dip. Heck, you could be eating pizza, chicken wings or any number of other foods that are high in saturated fat. Substitute guacamole and you'll get a filling, delicious appetizer -- and score some body-building and heart-healthy nutrients like pantothenic acid, lutein, iron, folate, potassium, magnesium, phosporous, selenium, manganese, copper, zinc, and vitamins A, C, E, K, B1, B2 and B6.

For the best homemade guacamole, add a little finely minced tomato, and try including a pinch of garlic powder and cumin. If you have leftovers, or need to store guacamole in the fridge for a while, place a sheet of plastic wrap in contact with the surface of the guacamole to keep it from turning gray. (This happens when the avocado oil begins to oxidize from contact with the air.) You can also spritz a little lemon or lime juice on the top.

We have a few guacamole recipes that will make halftime at your house pure pleasure: