Guac is so much more than a smashed up avocado with a bunch of cilantro and onions thrown in.

The dip should be zingy and fresh tasting, to cut through the creamy richness of the ripe avocado.

Celebrity chef Rick Bayless describes it in his Mexican Kitchen cookbook as "a verdant, thick-textured bowl of festivity, ripe with the elusive flavor of avocado.”

While guacamole dates back to the Aztecs, it wasn’t until the Spanish brought it to the New World where it grew to be a staple in Central and South American cuisine.

Now it has become a topping Americans can’t do without --on burritos, on chips, even on hot dogs.  To give you an idea of the scale of our passion for the bright green concoction, on Super Bowl weekend alone, roughly 158 million avocados were eaten last year.

On National Guacamole Day, here are some delicious ways to serve it up –either straight up or with some surprising twists.

1. Yonanas Guacamole



This guacamole gets a surprising sweet kick from ripe bananas.

Recipe: Yonanas Guacamole 

2. BLT Guacamole


(alifornia Avocado Commission)

Because everything tastes better with bacon.

Recipe: BLT Guacamole 

3. Guacamole Tomato Boats


(Produce For Kids)

Sail away with this simple guacamole recipe.

Recipe: Guacamole Tomato Boats

4. Hot Dogs with Guacamole


(My Colombian Recipes)

Even dogs deserve some guac.

Recipe: Hot Dogs with Guacamole