Guilt free smashed Avo Sundays

July 30, 2017 4 min read

Guilt free smashed Avo Sundays

It’s hard to find a cafe in Australia that doesn’t have some form of smashed avo on their breakfast menu, not to mention all the media attention regarding the apparent link between millennial housing affordability and their affinity for smashed avo. But have you ever thought of making that Sunday smashed avo a ritual that will not only save your hip pocket or your house deposit but also the environment? Its time the smashed avo gave us something other than a reason to sip our soy decaf lattes in swanky parts of your local suburb.

Assuming there is a link between housing affordability and smashed avo intake, then why not make the obvious choice and serve this Sunday morning staple at home, and invite your friends, family or that significant other over. What you need (serves 2):

  • 2x Avocados, peeled and de-seeded (But keep the seeds). If you live in the north of Australia, select Sharwill Avocados, and Hass for down south. See below
  • 4 slices of fresh sourdough bread
  • 1 Lemon
  • 100g Creamy Feta (or for a vegan option, replace with 100g fried mushrooms)
  • 1 large Tomato (of your favourite variety) or a handful of cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp crushed or flaked Himalayan Rock Salt (plus more to taste)
  • Fresh Cracked pepper to taste
  • 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh basil leaves (to garnish)


  1. Start by dicing the tomato and feta and add to a bowl. Add olive oil, salt and pepper, and gently mix together.
  2. Toast the slices of sourdough until golden brown
  3. Scoop the avocado flesh into a bowl and roughly mash with a fork.
  4. Place 2 slices of the sour dough on a plate, and spread with avocado mixture.
  5. Spoon generous portions of the tomato and feta mix onto the avo toast. Finish by squeezing fresh lemon juice over the toast and season with salt and fresh cracked pepper.

Of course serve with your favourite coffee, freshly brewed (not from disposable pods) and from socially responsible certified beans.

But what about the avocado seeds? Here’s the eco bit. It is estimated for the recipe above you will generate roughly 3 kg of carbon dioxide (CO2), but a single avocado tree will absorb approximately 880kg of CO2 over its lifetime (75 yrs). That means, on average the avocado tree will absorb approximately 12kg of CO2 per year, or roughly four times the estimated emissions from your meal per tree! And here’s the best part. Avocados are dead easy to grow, so not only will you have those fuzzy warm feelings of completely offsetting your carbon impact but if you are lucky may also have fresh free avocados for future Sundays. But what about bacon? Adding just 2 rashers of bacon to the above recipe will add roughly 1.3 kg of CO2 to the meal, which is over one third of the previous emissions and responsible for more emissions that any other ingredient on the list. We’ll leave that decision up to you. If you opted for the Vegan option of mushrooms, your emissions are roughly equivalent, largely due to the energy used in frying or cooking them.

To start your avocado green thumb, follow these simple steps:

  1. Gently scrub your avocado seeds under running water.
  2. Insert 3 toothpicks into the avocado seed to make a support frame and place the seed over a glass of water ensuring the pointy end of the seed faces up, with the base of the seed approximately a quarter of the way into the water.
  3. Place your seed on a window sill or other sunny location and ensure the seed never dries out.
  4. After 4-8 weeks, you should start to see the seed split, sending roots to the water, and a small stem protrude out of the top.
  5. Keep the water up to your avocado until it is approximately 10cm tall.
  6. Remove from the water and plant into a 10cm diameter pot filled with good quality compost and water very well. Water daily to reduce the risk of transplant shock.
  7. Once established, you can plant in an appropriate spot to flourish. Remember to water well and keep in mind that avocados are relatively tolerant of environmental conditions, but don’t like heavy frost, or waterlogged soil.

A word of caution. Avocados can grow to be very large trees. In our calculation we estimated a trunk diameter of 40cm, and 10m tall so plant your tree wisely. Planting a different tree with the same approximate dimensions and life span will give similar results.

Ingredient Summary – CO2 Generated

Item Qty CO2
Avocado x2 (200g) 0.22kg (2)
Sourdough Bread x4 slices (500g) 0.450kg (1)
Lemon x1 (100g) 0.11kg (2)
Feta 200g 0.633kg (3),(4)
Tomato x1 (100g) 0.11kg (2)
Himalayan Rock Salt 1 tsp (10g) 0.005g (5)
Cracked Pepper <1 tsp (10g) 0.005g (5)
Extra Virgin Olive Oil 2 tsp (20g) 0.03kg (6)
Basil Leaves 1/4 cup (20g) 0.0113kg (7)
Coffee 2x Large Espresso Shots (44g) 0.21kg (8)
Milk 900mL 1kg (3)
Electricity 2kW for 4 mins 0.133kg (9)
Bacon (Not Included in Total Below) 2 Rashers 1.26kg (1)
Mushrooms (Not included in Total Below) 100g 0.036kg (10)
Cook Mushrooms (Not included in Total Below) 9.5kW for 4 mins 0.633kg (9)
Total 2.92kg CO2e
  1. Based on “carbon footprint for australian agricultural products and downstream food products in the supermarket”, CSIRO.
  2. Based on a value of 1.1kg CO2e/kg fruit. Due to a lack of specific information in Australia, values are based on USA production which may not be accurate.
  3. Based on a figure of 1.11kg CO2e/ kg fat and protein corrected milk
  4. Based on a multiplication of 5.7 times CO2e production of milk from (3)
  5. Due to lack of information, assumed to be 0.42kg CO2e/ kg salt based on broad acre cropping.
  6. Based on 1.5kg CO2e/ L extra virgin olive oil
  7. Based on 0.564kg CO2e/kg lettuce
  8. Based on 0.105kg CO2e/ cup espresso coffee
  9. Based on 1T CO2e per MWhr
  10. Based on 0.36 kWhrs/kg and then CO2/ kWhr from (9)


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