Guacamole is one of those things I think a lot of us stare at as kids and lap up as adults. And I can eat it on a daily basis. And apparently so can my 1.5 year old niece since she’s obsessed with mine.
Now there are also no limits to how one chooses to make their guacamole so long as it has that one mandatory base ingredient: Avocados. From there, the sky’s the limit on how to give this king of green dips its personality.
Well, folks. The secret ingredients to my easy and estupendo guacamole is roasted garlic (recipe here) and Cotija cheese. And it’s going to win the appetites and hearts of any guacamole lover.
To put it quite simply – THIS. GUAC. ROCKS.
Here’s How I Made It!:
A key ingredient to a successful guacamole are as many green ingredients as possible. Okay, that may just be coincidental, but in all seriousness, we need some limes.
Squeeze the juice out of them and set aside.
Now take a small yellow onion (one that looks about this big in the palm of your hand)…
…and coarsely slice into discs.
Now take a jalapeño pepper…
…cut off the stem and slice longways, removing the inner, white rib and all seeds…
…so it looks like this. This will remove virtually all spice and heat from the pepper and it won’t be spicy at all! So I suggest adding it since it provides some wonderful flavor!
Slice the jalapeño up into chunks about this big.
Now take some fresh cilantro leaves, discarding the stems (and if you hate cliantro, yes, you can leave it out. But it will be so blended with other ingredients it won’t be overbearing nor will it even really standout on its own so I do suggest it).
And, my secret ingredient, some ROASTED GARLIC! Make my Instant Pot recipe here!
Add them all to a food processor…
…and pulse it all up…
…until it’s nice and puréed with some light chunkiness still going on in there. Set that aside for the time being.
Now let’s focus on what makes a guacamole a guacamole: HASS AVOCADOS! Get a bunch of them.
They should be semi-firm to the touch; not like a tennis ball, but not like a Koosh ball either – more like a ball of clay or a stress ball. If they’re hard when you get them from your market, leave them in a brown bag and they’ll become the perfect ripeness within 2-3 days.
Slice them in half, cutting around the large pit (or directly through it if your knife is sharp enough to do that)…
…just like this.
Remove the pit and toss it in the trash (or keep it as a pet)…
…scoop out that avocado meat from the inner walls of the outer skin…
…and add it to a large mixing bowl. Repeat the same thing with all the avocados.
Now take a potato masher and mash the avocados up to the desired guacamole consistency.
I personally like to mash it until it’s smooth but with plenty of chunks of avocado still present throughout. So, basically, don’t overdo it.
Now take our blended purée from earlier…
…and add it to the mashed avocados, stirring it in nicely with everything.
Now take some tomatoes…
…and fold those in as well.
And to finish this off and send it home, let’s add a few seasonings. Add in some crumbled Cotija cheese (or grated Parmesan if you absolutely can’t find Cotija or leave it out if you’re vegan and/or dairy-free)…
…some kosher salt…
…some garlic salt…
…and, perhaps a bit unconventional for a guacamole some Creole seasoning of any sort (but I love Tony Chachere’s!)
Stir everything together gently, but really well so all of the seasonings get nice and folded in. They should be evenly distributed throughout the guacamole, making sure it’s not all too much in one area versus another. It should be nice and dispersed.
So when it’s all mixed together, it should look just like this! Okay, grab those chips because we’re in prime dipping mode!
But also feel free to transfer some to a bowl and make it look all pretty and stuff (this arrangement pictured here is about as Martha Stewart as you’re gonna get with me).
Dip a chip…
…bring to your mouth…
…savor the flavor burst you are going to experience…
…and cheer. You will be so proud of yourself and I can guarantee you that those who try it will say it’s one of the finest guacamoles they’ve ever dipped their chip (or finger) into. And if your office has a guacamole cook off, you’re pretty much guaranteed to win it!
- 5 medium-ripe Hass avocados (they should be semi-firm to the touch; not like a tennis ball, but not like a Koosh ball either – more like a ball of clay), sliced in half with the pit removed and the meat scooped out from the inner walls of the outer skin
- 1/2 a medium yellow or red onion, cut into coarse slices
- 1 1/2 limes, juiced
- 5-10 cloves of fresh roasted garlic, which will be softened (this is the secret ingredient and here is the simple recipe for your Instant Pot! If you wish to forego the roasted garlic route, 2 tbsp of regular fresh, crushed garlic cloves will work – but I DO suggest roasting it as it really sets it apart!)
- 1/4 cup of fresh cilantro leaves, stems removed (If you absolutely hate cilantro, leave it out but it really isn’t pungent once combined with everything else and is a key ingredient to a great guacamole!)
- 1 jalapeño pepper, seeds and white, inner ribs removed & cut coarsely (this won’t be spicy at all once the seeds and ribs are removed – it just provides flavor)
- 1/2 cup of diced tomatoes (from a 14.5 oz can is fine, but make sure it’s drained – I like using the ones with green chilies or jalapeños in it for some spice. You can also just use the whole can if you wish)
- 1/3 cup of crumbled Cotija cheese (or grated Parmesan if you absolutely can’t find Cotija)
- 1 tsp of kosher salt
- 1/2 tsp of garlic salt
- 1/2 tsp of Creole seasoning
- Tortilla chips, for dipping
- Add the onion, cilantro, jalapeño, roasted garlic (see recipe here) and lime juice in a food processor until chunkily puréed. Set aside
- Scoop the avocado meat into a large mixing bowl
- Using a potato masher, mash up the avocado until it’s the desired consistency/texture (I suggest not overdoing it and leaving some chunks in there)
- With a mixing spoon, fold in the purée, tomatoes, kosher salt, garlic salt, Creole seasoning and Cotija cheese. Stir very well (but gently) to combine and make sure the seasonings are evenly distributed throughout the guacamole. Taste it to make sure it’s seasoned to your liking. If you want it spicier, add in just about 1/8 tsp of a chili powder or cayenne pepper
- Serve with some chips or line it in a tortilla when making burritos, fajitas or even put it on a burger – anything that makes you happy!
Want more roasted garlic? Add a few more cloves! Here is my recipe on how to easily make roasted garlic in the Instant Pot!
There’s a myth that saving one of the pits from an avocado and placing it in the center of the guacamole keeps it from turning a bit brown in color due to being exposed to the air. It also makes for pretty presentation.
As mentioned, removing the seeds and rib from the jalapeño removes virtually all spice once blended. If you do want a kick, add in just a little chili powder or cayenne pepper to taste (1/8 of a tsp goes a long way!)
Want it vegan and/or are you dairy-free? No problemo! While I LOVE this ingredient, leave out to Cotija cheese!
If you don’t already have a food processor of some sort, I strongly suggest getting this mini one – it’s cheap, takes up minimal space and works wonderfully!
Also, I LOVE this potato masher for mashing up the avocado, leaving it both smooth AND chunky at the same time!
The avocados should be semi-firm to the touch; not like a tennis ball, but not like a Koosh ball either – more like a ball of clay or a stress ball. If they’re hard when you get them from your market, leave them in a brown bag and they’ll become the perfect ripeness within 2-3 days.
Guacamole does have a short shelf life and should be kept in a shady area when serving as the sun will want to discolor it pretty quickly.
Got some leftover? I’d use an airtight container to store any extra which should last up to 2 days max in the fridge. It will be normal if the top layer of the guacamole begins to darken due to exposure but everything below that top layer will still be that vibrant green.
This does make A LOT (which is great because this guacamole is a huge hit at many a gathering and goes quickly). But if you wish to halve the recipe, do so!