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I received free samples of California Avocado mentioned in this post. By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by California Avocado and am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time.

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As the weeks of summer are busy, we look for quick and easy meals that aren’t so heavy. Between the baseball and soon to start football, swimming lessons, bike rides and picnics, there isn’t enough time to spend hours in the kitchen. One ingredient that provides a lot of versatility in the summer months is avocado. California avocados are in season from May through September in California.

Ever since I started working as a supermarket dietitian in a grocery store, I love to bring customers to the avocado bin. To pick an avocado, all you do is pick it up. Give it a gentle squeeze and if it gives to a little pressure, it is ready to eat today. If you aren’t going to be eating it for two to three days, then pick an avocado that doesn’t give to pressure with a gentle squeeze. It will ripen on the counter. Easy, right?

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Why use California avocados in your meals?

California avocados are a nutrient-dense fruit which contribute nearly 20 vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients, per one oz. serving (1/5th of a medium avocado). That’s right – 20!

You can use California avocados all day long. When we visited San Diego a couple of years ago, I had the best breakfast at a local restaurant: A California Omelet filled with diced avocado, tomatoes, onions, peppers and with melted cheese and cilantro. Totally out of this world.

Another staple on a hot summer day? BALT – Bacon, Avocado, Lettuce and Tomato. Instead of mayonnaise, we use creamy, mashed avocados. A healthier and tastier version of the traditional BLT. And for dinner, a favorite from my United States of MyPlates Challenge, Kickin’ Chicken Salad.

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Here’s a perfect lunch or dinner recipe I created especially for this summer. You could also have it for breakfast. (I love lunch or dinner options for breakfast.) Why we love it so much? It’s easy, we can use our fresh garden produce and add a taste of California in as well. No need for mayonnaise when you have an avocado!

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Quinoa Harvest Wraps
Serves 4.

1 teaspoon canola oil
1 small onion, diced
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 green bell pepper, diced
1 Serrano or jalepeno pepper, finely diced
1/2 cup fresh sweet corn
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 cup cooked quinoa
1/2 cup diced fresh tomatoes
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 teaspoon cumin
The juice from 1/2 lime
Salt and pepper to taste
1 ripe California avocado, quartered
4 whole grain tortillas
1/2 cup shredded Mexican cheese

1. Heat skillet over medium heat. Add canola oil, onions, peppers (all), corn and garlic. Sauté 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
2. Remove from heat and place pepper mixture in large bowl. Add cooked quinoa, tomatoes, cilantro, cumin, lime juice, salt and pepper. Mix gently.
3. Over the center of each tortilla, spread a quarter of an avocado. Add 1/4 of mixture to center of each tortilla. Sprinkle cheese over top and roll into a wrap. Cut in half to serve.

More avocado recipes? Click on the link!

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