My Avocado Sauce is thick and creamy and whips together in minutes. The addition of basil elevates and differentiates my Avocado Sauce from the competition. It pairs well with so much! Try adding it to pasta, a grain bowl with farro or quinoa, or use it as a dip with vegetables or pita.
From toast to tacos and grain bowls, avocados are a staple in most of our diets. They add a creamy, smooth taste that is a healthy substitute for most dairy products like butter and sour cream. The avocado, in my Avocado Sauce serves a similar role as yogurt or sour cream would.
Most of the 200-300 calories in an avocado comes from fat. But, as I am sure most of you have heard they are “healthy fats.” This is because the fat in avocado is mostly unsaturated, and more specifically are mostly monounsaturated fatty acids, which are connected to lowering total cholesterol and increasing the good cholesterol (high density lipoproteins).1
When you enjoy my Avocado Sauce you will be enjoying a healthy serving of unsaturated fats. To note, a serving of avocado is about a third of a medium avocado or 50 grams. This serving size was updated in 2016 and allows avocados to be considered “healthy” by the FDA.2
All foods with fat have a mix of types of fats, so even avocados have the less healthy, saturated fats. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends getting less than 7% of calories from saturated fats. The American Heart Association goes even farther, by recommending limiting saturated fats to 5-6% of calories or about 120 calories of a 2000 calorie diet.3 So, saturated fats can be part of a healthy diet when enjoyed in moderation.
Fats that are considered to be “unhealthy” are saturated fats, which are found in full-fat dairy (whole milk), animal proteins, and some processed snacks. Saturated fats are highest in fatty cuts of beef, lamb, pork, and poultry with the skin on. Dairy products like butter, cheese and heavy cream are also high in saturated fat.
Adding my Avocado Sauce to your next meal is a healthy idea! An FDA approved serving of a third of an avocado provides a good source of fiber (11% daily value), folate (10% daily value), and potassium (6% daily value). Avocados also provide vitamin E (6% daily value) an important antioxidant that protect our cells from damage and boosts our immune system.2
Some people, like Shawn Mendes enjoy eating avocado raw with a spoon. For those of us who need a bit more flavor, we can make Avocado Sauce! The addition of a ½ cup of basil lends a pungent punch and a savory note that that will turn the simplest meal into a celebration. If you do not have a food processor or blender just make sure to chiffonade the basil (cut into thin ribbons).
Adding lemon to the Avocado Sauce gives the dish an acidic tang, and will slow down the browning process that avocados are notorious for after being cut. As always, adjust the recipe to the dish you are making. If using the Avocado Sauce on tacos or another Mexican inspired dish, use limes instead of lemons.
Adjust to the Dish
Look at my recipe for Avocado Sauce as a springboard for flavor combinations you can make depending on the dish you are making. This sauce is thick, so if you want to use it more as a dressing feel free to add water. If you want it to be thicker for a sandwich or wrap, omit the olive oil.
A spicy Avocado Sauce can be made with red pepper chili flakes or your preferred dried or fresh chilis. Other herbs to consider adding in with the basil or replacing are cilantro, parsley and dill. You can always add more garlic or use green garlic, which is young garlic that can be found in the Spring at farmers markets. Shallots would also be a delicious addition to my Avocado Sauce.
The cherry tomatoes are really delicious in the Avocado Sauce, but can be omitted! If you want something to replace the crunchy texture, try red onions or bell peppers. Make my Avocado Sauce work for you!
- Boston 677 Huntington Avenue, Ma 02115 +1495‑1000. Types of Fat. The Nutrition Source. Published June 9, 2014. Accessed May 22, 2020. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/what-should-you-eat/fats-and-cholesterol/types-of-fat/
- 8-FDA-Update-Avocados-Now-Considered-Healthy-Winter-2016.pdf. Accessed May 22, 2020. https://www.californiaavocadogrowers.com/sites/default/files/documents/8-FDA-Update-Avocados-Now-Considered-Healthy-Winter-2016.pdf
- Saturated Fat. www.heart.org. Accessed May 22, 2020. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-eating/eat-smart/fats/saturated-fats
- 2 ripe avocados halved
- 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 3/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes halved
- In a food processor, add avocados, basil, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. With the motor running, add oil in a slow stream until emulsified.
- In a large bowl, combine avocado sauce and cherry tomatoes.
- Serve immediately mixed with 4 servings of cooked pasta or a hearty grain, such as farro.