Doctors Are Warning People About ‘Avocado Hand.’ Do You Know How To Safely Cut An Avocado?

by Ileana Paules-Bronet
Ileana is a writer on the Original Content team. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.

Have you heard of “avocado hand”? It is a scary new injury that’s sending home cooks and amateur chefs to the hospital in equal numbers.

As you might imagine, avocado hand comes from improperly cutting avocados. Specifically, avocado hand occurs when people don’t realize how ripe their avocado is, so they cut into it with more force than they need to.

Avocado-related injuries are becoming so widespread that The Times of London recently reported on the uptick in avocado hand.

They explained that surgeons have been seeing more and more stab and slash injuries due to people not knowing how to safely cut an avocado — some of these injuries have even required intricate tendon and nerve surgeries.

Fox News reported that some hospitals prepare themselves for post-brunch avocado injuries on Saturday afternoons.

But don’t worry, surgeons aren’t recommending that people stop eating avocados — instead, they just want people to learn how to cut them properly and safely.

Read on to learn the safe way to cut an avocado. You don’t want to be the next avocado hand victim!

Thumbnail: Pexels

Best Way To Cut An Avocado

avocado toast

While some people recommend using an avocado slicer, you don’t need one to safely cut avocados.

All you need is a regular knife, a cutting board, and a dish towel.

Make sure your avocado is ripe, then wash it before placing it on the cutting board. Secure the cutting board by putting a damp dish towel underneath it — this will keep it from sliding around.

Step #1: Cut Lengthwise

cut an avocado lengthwise

According to the California Avocado Commission, there’s one way to cut an avocado that is proven to be the safest.

Begin by placing the avocado on your cutting board. With one hand on top of the avocado, slice the avocado lengthwise around the seed.

Start slicing at the narrow end of the avocado, then rotate it with your hand to cut all the way around.

Step #2: Rotate 90 Degrees And Slice Lengthwise Again

rotate avocado

Next, rotate the avocado 90 degrees so that the slice you made in the previous step points up and down.

Repeat the slicing technique to cut lengthwise around the avocado once more — this should cut the avocado into quarters.

Step #3: Separate The Quarters And Remove The Seed

Step #3: Separate The Quarters And Remove The Seed

Once you have sliced the avocado into quarters, set your knife aside.

Separate the quarters, then remove the seed with your fingertips — it should easily come out, but if it’s difficult to remove, you can use a spoon.

Step #4: Peel And Cut The Avocado

peel avocado

After you have removed and discarded the seed, gently slide your thumb under the skin of the avocado to peel it away.

Once your avocado is fully peeled, you can slice or dice it in whatever fashion you’d like.

And there you have it: a safe and effective way to cut an avocado that won’t land you in the emergency room.

Wrong Ways To Cut An Avocado

Wrong Ways To Cut An Avocado

Now that you’ve learned the proper way to cut an avocado, you should also know what not to do.

  • Don’t slice an avocado width-wise — it will make it harder to get the seed out and harder to peel.
  • Don’t cut through just the flesh of the avocado — always slice until you hit the seed, then use that as an axis to cut around.
  • Don’t strike the seed with a knife and twist to remove it — although this method is popular, it requires a decent amount of skill and should not be attempted by home cooks.

To see more in-depth instructions on how to cut an avocado, please watch the video below!

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