How You Should Really Be Eating Avocados, According To Aarón Sánchez

Aarón Sánchez is an award-winning TV personality, the author of two cookbooks, a judge on Fox's popular cooking competition series "MasterChef" and "MasterChef Junior," and the co-owner and executive chef of the New Orleans based Mexican restaurant Johnny Sánchez, according to his website. With all his impressive qualifications, it is a bit of an understatement to say that Sánchez knows his way around a kitchen. And as the chef of a successful Mexican restaurant, it is also fair to say that Sánchez probably knows a thing or two about how to prepare an avocado — the tasty and popular fruit that appears as an ingredient in a variety of Mexican dishes. However, while avocados have enjoyed quite a bit of popularity in recent years — appearing in everything from toasts and salads to even margaritas — Sánchez isn't always pleased with the way he sees the ingredient being used. The chef has strong opinions on the right and wrong way to prepare the pitted fruit, which he recently shared with Taste of Home.

Aarón Sánchez says avocados should never be baked

Aarón Sánchez, who calls himself an avocado "purist," told Taste of Home he believes "the magic of avocado is that it should be eaten fresh." "I love simply taking an avocado, scooping out the flesh, and serving a crab salad over it," he explained. While fresh avocado may be his favorite, Sánchez also supported lightly grilling an avocado — which can give it an appealing smoky flavor — or tempura frying it in breadcrumbs and hot oil. But the one thing he says chefs should never do to an avocado is put it in the oven. 

The main reason for Sánchez's aversion to baking the ingredient is because heat can greatly alter the taste and texture of an avocado. If the temperature is not closely monitored, the avocado's naturally smooth, creamy texture can quickly turn to brown mush, which can often happen if it is put in the oven. However, if a chef absolutely must bake their avocado, Sánchez advises them to choose an avocado that is a little underripe and keep a close eye on it while it bakes, lest the dish turns into unappetizing brown goo.