This authentic Guac recipe hails from Guatemala. Quick, easy and delicious, it can be made in under 10 minutes, whether chunky or smooth. With the simplest list of ingredients, it’s a game-changer and may be the freshest-tasting Guacamole you have ever eaten.
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The Best Guac – what makes this Guacamole recipe authentic?
‘Guac‘ or Guacamole? What do you call it? We eat it so often, we simply (and affectionately) use the short version at GFHQ. And yes, you can buy it from the supermarket, nicely packaged and ready to serve. But we stopped doing that long ago. Why? Because home-made Guacamole is WAAAY better than the shop-bought stuff. Once you’ve tasted it and you realise how easy it is to make, you never go back.
Although we’ve been making Guac for years, it’s only recently that we found a truly authentic recipe… And it’s changed the way we make it… Forever!
I take no credit. It’s from a relative-in-law who is Guatemalan. And I know this recipe is authentic, because the list of ingredients (and with it, the tradition of making it) came from no book. Passed down through the Guatemalan generations, THIS guacamole recipe was generously shared from memory and experience.
What Goes into Real Guacamole?
At its basic and best, Guac is a familiar green dip made from avocado and lime, with a little onion, seasoning and some fresh herbs. Although there are regional variations and additions that are based on taste, the basic ingredients are actually simple and very unfussy. It’s naturally gluten free, dairy free and vegan. And it takes only 10 minutes to make.
Avocado is the most important ingredient in any guacamole recipe. And the most important thing about the choice of avocado, is whether it is ripe. There are lots of varieties of avocado available in the grocers and I’ve made guac with most of them… They all work and work well. But how do you know whether they are ripe enough?
Actually, it’s pretty easy and it’s not about whether the label says ‘ripe and ready’. Labels can be misleading, especially when it comes to making guacamole. Use your senses. They are far more reliable.
If you are using Hass avocados, the colour is important. A Hass is ripe when the skin has turned purple-black. Other avocados may be less obvious however. So the most important check to do is the squeeze test. An avocado is ripe and ready when you gently squeeze it with your thumb and it feels soft. The thumb squeeze will also leave a slight imprint.
But be careful not to let avocados get over-ripe. An over-ripe avocado is as unusable as one which is under-ripe. If it feels too soft and the flesh is turning black and stringy when you cut it open, it is no longer good…
Do Onions Matter?
When it comes to an authentic guacamole recipe, using raw onion is a given. But the type of onion is less clear. Some recipes use red and some use white. To be honest, I’m not sure the colour particularly matters. But chopping them very finely will most definitely improve the experience of eating them. As will soaking them in the lime juice before adding to the avocado. Why? Because when you soak them in acidic lime, it helps to strip away the harshness, leaving the sweetness… without the aftershock.
Guacamole with herbs
Guacamole needs herbs… fresh ones. Using dried herbs won’t cut it. Guac is not a dish which encourages them to rehydrate and apart from a lesser flavour, they will also leave a gritty texture.
Now I’ve seen guacamole recipes that use a variety of herbs, but if you want an authentic dip, you need coriander (also known as cilantro). It’s fresh and vibrant and has a distinct flavour that pairs to perfection with avocado, onion and lime. And you need plenty of it.
Although you still need a balance of flavour (and the best way to check this is to use your taste buds), never be stingy with coriander. But remember to chop it fine, so that the freshness of the herby juices infuse throughout. I ALWAYS use a Mezzaluna to chop herbs. Their curved magic (designed specifically for the purpose) makes herb-chopping a total dream.
Guac without Chilli
It’s fair to say that many guacamole recipes contain chilli and I guess ultimately, it’s a matter of choice whether you want your guac with or without. This recipe contains none. But if you want to add a little chilli heat, then go ahead. Just remember to remove the seeds, chop very finely (a Mezzaluna will help here too) and add with caution. Anything that masks the natural freshness of the base guacamole ingredients is too much.
A Guacamole recipe without tomato
In the past, we made Guac with tomato… It was a faff, because we always blanch and peel before chopping and adding. Tomato skin never did much to enhance guacamole. But equally, tomato flesh adds little by way of flavour and can make the whole dip wet and sloppy.
The absence of tomato in the traditional Guatemalan guacamole recipe is therefore particularly appealing… If you cannot imagine Guac without it, then that’s fine. But please try this no-tomato version before making your final judgement. Trust me on this one… It’s not necessary and adds nothing.
No garlic either?
Yes… you read that right. THIS guacamole recipe contains NO GARLIC. And that is absolutely how it should be. While I am willing to give leeway on adding chilli and tomato, I am digging my heals in when it comes to garlic. It turns out that authentic guacamole does NOT have garlic. Period! And honestly? It’s way more pure, fresh and delicious without it.
How do you like your Guac? Smooth or Chunky?
Whether you like your Guac smooth or chunky comes down to personal preference. If you want it really smooth, the easiest way to make it, is to throw everything in the blender and turn on the switch.
I prefer my Guac to be a little chunky however, with a decent amount of texture. Chunkier guacamole allows individual ingredients to shine through both with their unique flavours, contrasts and textures. And for me, it somehow tastes more ‘crisp’ and natural.
If you have a large pestle and mortar, great. There is something quite satisfying about crushing avocados the traditional way before stirring through with everything else. If not, just chop or fork-crush your avocado flesh to the degree of chunkiness desired.
Top Tip : How to keep your Guacamole fresh
Let’s be honest… As much as we love guacamole, there is nothing more unappetising than when it has started to oxidise and go brown. Of course, you could just make it and eat as soon as it is mixed. But in reality, Guac needs to be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge, so that we can focus on making fresh flatbreads to dip with, or frying up deliciously-spiced fajita fillings.
So here’s a Top Tip : To keep your guacamole fresh, SAVE THE STONE and place it in the middle of the bowl of freshly made guac. Smooth down the top and lay over a piece of clingfilm so that it touches and seals the surface with no air in between. Keep in the fridge until ready to use. It’s as simple as that! And if you have any leftovers… Store in exactly the same way.
Made my Guac?
If you make this authentic guacamole recipe, I’d love to hear about it. Is it different to the recipe that you usually make and if so how? Or has this recipe helped you realise how easy it is and converted you away from the insipid supermarket varieties?
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Other awesome dip recipes on Gluten Free Alchemist :
Real ‘Guac’ – An Authentic Guacamole Recipe
- sharp vegetable knife
- chopping board
- citrus juicer
- mezzaluna (optional)
- spoon and fork
- fridge and clingfilm for storing
- ½ small onion (red or white) finely chopped
- 1 lime juiced
- 2 large ripe avocado
- handful fresh coriander finely chopped
- salt and pepper
- ½ tbsp olive oil optional
- Finely chop the onion and place in a small bowl.
- Add about half of the lime juice and stir thoroughly. Leave to stand whilst you prepare the avocado. This will help remove the harshness from the onion.
- Cut the avocados in half and remove the stones (pits), saving one of the stones for keeping the guacamole fresh.
- Scoop the avocado flesh from the skins.
- Chop into small pieces, or place in either a medium sized bowl or mortar and mash the avocado to the texture desired using a fork or a pestle.
- Add the onion and the lime juice that it has been sitting in and also the finely chopped coriander. Season with salt and pepper.
- Gently stir through and taste. Add more of the lime juice and seasoning until you are happy with the flavour.
- Stir through a little olive oil (optional) to loosen if required.
- To keep fresh before serving, push the reserved avocado stone into the centre of the guacamole and cover with clingfilm so that the clingfilm touches the surface to make airtight. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Serve with tortilla chips, pitta or flatbread or use as an accompaniment with fajitas and other Mexican/South American food.
© 2019-2023 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist