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grilled guacamole with parmesan and basil

Looks can be deceiving.

When I was little, I avoided guacamole like the plague. My reasons for hating guac?  It was mushy, and it was green.  One day, when I was feeling a tad bit adventurous, I dipped my chip into the creamy, dip and I've been seriously obssessed ever since.

I must confess that I feel guilty about my former hatred of the wonderful dip, especailly since my two reasons for avoiding it (green and mushy) were not good reasons at all to miss out on all of guacamole's magic for the first decade of my life.  To make up for this, I came up with three very good reasons to love guacamole.

avocados chillin' on the grill
1.  Guacamole gets you friends.  Eating guacamole is a communal event.  Nothing says "be my friend" like a big bowl of chips and an even bigger bowl of guacamole.  Whip some of this out and you'll be one of the most popular kids in town. 

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2. Guacamole is like nature's form of butter.  It's creamy, spreadable, and buttery.  And we all know how awesome butter is...

3. Guacamole is healthy.  It's full of healthy fats, omega-threes, fiber and all that jazz. Did you know avocados are the most nutritionally complete food? Humans could theoretically survive on avocados alone. Pass the chips.  

Still skeptical?  This "guacamole" isn't traditional at all.  First, it's full of garlic, basil, and Parmesan cheese instead of cilantro, lime and red onions -- adding an Italian twist to the Mexican favorite.  Second, I grilled my avocados on the panini press, adding a whole new warm, crispy flavor to them (it's proven that everything tastes better with grill marks...).  Third, I threw in some super savory ingredients like white truffle salt and a robust (somewhat pricey) extra virgin olive oil -- these luxurious ingredients sure paid off.   It's warm, herby, and cheesy -- and it'll make you look at this delicious dip in a whole new light.  Looks can be deceiving, but taste speaks for itself. 

Did you ever hate a food because of the way it looked?

With love,

3 firm-ripe avocados
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for grilling (the fruiter and richer, the better)
juice and zest of 1 lemon
salt and freshly ground pepper  (I used truffle salt for extra savory flavor)
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup loosely packed basil leaves, roughly chopped
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more to taste

Heat your panini press to the highest setting (alternatively, you could use a gas or charcoal grill).  Halve and pit the avocados.  Drizzle generously with olive oil and lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
Place the avocado halves cut side down on the grill.  Cook for about 4 minutes, or until you can see crispy, golden-brown grill marks on them (check frequently to make sure they're not burning).  Scoop the flesh out of the avocados and mash gently with a fork (I like to leave mine quite chunky). Stir in the rest of the olive oil, lemon zest, garlic, basil and Parmesan.  Serve immediately.

Adapted from Food 52

© Cannella Vita. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without my permission/linking back to Cannella Vita. If you want to republish this recipe, please link back to this post.


  1. SAME! I can't believe it's taken me the best part of 21 years before I realised how delicious guac is!!!
    I'm now obsessed with it and will make it at any given opportunity!!
    Plain avo :
    Plain guac:
    So much love for this beaut of a food!x

    1. Hahaha at least it only took me 10 years to discover the delicious fruit! Those skinny corn fish cakes look delicious!!!

  2. I felt the same way about guac til I tried it!! I loooove yours, omg I adore parmesan and basil and I want to try this so badly! Ugh I need a grill!

    1. Hahaha please try it! I am so glad I am not the only one who had issues with the green, mushy nature of guacamole!

  3. This looks so good - I will have to try it soon. I just posted a recipe for a classic guacamole this week, too!

    1. Yum! You can never go wrong with classic!

  4. You just stole my heart. Need a HUGE bowl of this right noooow!
    The one fault of avocados: they're not post-friendly. Sigh.

    1. So true, but there's nothing a little food styling can't fix. All of your photos are gorgeous, I am *sure* you can even make green mush look stunning ;)

  5. I just discovered your blog via pinterest (seaching for cookie dough brownie recipe!-thanks :) and i must say i'm smitten. love reading your recipes, adventures and tips! then I noticed you are so young!!!! good for you for doing this blog, loving life and food and cooking and sharing with others! you've got a bright future ahead of you. Are you going to become a professional chef? You would surely make a great one! :) You remeind me a lot of myself! Thanks again. I'll be a regular reader!

    1. Thank you so much :) I am so glad that you found Cannella Vita. Pinterest is one of my favorite sites, and I have found many of my favorite blogs through it :) Your comment made me smile, please stop by again soon! -E

  6. Beets. I have never been able to make myself try them. My Mom loved them, and Dad still eats them, and say they are delicious. But there is just - - um - - SOMETHING about them..... maybe the color? I can't say the texture, because I haven't even been able to make myself even touch one! Every I see one I just shudder. And that is really unusual, bercause I'm usually not the type of person who is afraid to try new foods.

    But beets? No way! Oh, and not calamari, either - - looks like deep-fried rubber bands to me. :-)

    1. Hahaha that's so funny! I agree with you on the beets, the texture never really appealed to me, but I LOVE calamari ;)

  7. Grilled avocados is genius! I'll have to try this on the grill soon. Oh, and beets are delicious, I especially love the golden yellow ones.

    1. Yum! Haha I've never tried yellow beets?

  8. Hmmmm - - yellow beets? I would probably be able to talk myself into trying those. I really do think it's the color that turns me off of trying beets. But golden yellow ones? I can fool myself into thinking they are squash. Then I should be fine. :-D

    1. Me too! I am always up for trying new vegetables!

  9. This: "Humans could theoretically survive on avocados alone" has just made my day! I am now happy.


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