A ripe avocado is a versatile ingredient that enhances an otherwise boring meal or treat, and is the key part of a tasty guacamole. An avocado that is spoiled, however, has a much different and unpleasant look and taste. There are several different things to look for on both the outside and inside of the avocado before you use it in any recipe. The traits of a spoiled or unripe avocado are relatively easy to spot and finding them ensures you will get a quality product.
Squeeze the avocado gently. An avocado should be firm but also have a little give. Discard it if it feels too soft.
Inspect the avocado's outside surface for brown or dark spots or cracks. Throw it away if you notice any of these.
Cut open the avocado with a kitchen knife. Investigate the inside of it and look for brown portions of avocado. Scoop those parts out with a spoon and throw them away.
Smell the remaining pieces of avocado. Discard the entire thing if you notice bad or foul smells, as these indicate the entire fruit is spoiled.
Take a small taste of a green piece of the avocado. Throw the entire fruit away if the piece tastes sour or unpleasant.