Method 5: Bake it
Wait time: About 10 minutes
The theory: The oven method has a strong following amongst kitchen-hacking YouTubers, so I figured there must be some merit to it (or, at the very least, it would kick the microwave's ass). The trick involves wrapping the avo in tin foil then baking it for 10 minutes at 200 degrees. Chemistry-wise, it's similar to the gas-capturing paper bag/hotbox method, just accelerated by a touch of heat.
The verdict: This was by far the least effective measure. After 10 minutes, the avocado was still green and almost aggressively unripe, with abysmal scoop-ability and a blindingly bright, tangy taste. Nope.
The flour method produced the best-tasting, creamiest, and most perfectly ripe avocado. However, the difference between all the paper-bag avos was negligible at best and none of them strayed significantly from the average avocado's natural, bag-free ripening process over the same span. And heating up an avocado is straight nasty, not to mention ineffective. The takeaway? Nature prevails yet again and good things come to those who wait, etc. etc. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
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Meredith Heil is a staff writer for Thrillist. She's green like an avocado, no beef. Follow her at @mereditto