The Skinny on Skinny Avocados

By Cook's Illustrated Published January 2014

What are "skinny" avocados?

Florida avocados are sometimes referred to as skinny avocados (and are actually labeled SlimCados by one producer). Florida avocados’ fat by weight can be as little as half of that of common Hass avocados, which are grown primarily in California. You can tell the difference between them at first sight. On average, Florida avocados are 2.5 times the size of a typical Hass, with a shape similar to that of a papaya and a smooth, bright-green exterior. Besides being smaller, Hass avocados have a wrinkly skin that turns dark greenish black when ripe. We compared them three ways: plain, in guacamole, and in our recipe for Avocado Salad with Mango and Jícama (see related content). Tasters noted that the plain Florida avocados were more watery, with a milder, more fruity flavor. In guacamole, they tasted more washed-out than the Hass. Since the Florida avocados have roughly six times the sugar of Hass avocados by weight, it’s not surprising that tasters also found the Florida samples sweeter.

THE BOTTOM LINE: We’re sticking with nutty, buttery Hass avocados for guacamole, but the skinny variety is fine in salads or other dishes where a fresh, mild fruit flavor is desired.


“Skinny” avocados are fine in salads but a no-go for guacamole.