This Other Common Name For Avocados Is the Single Greatest Fruit Nickname In Produce History

Hint: It's more reptilian than you think!

This-Other-Common-Name-For-Avocados-Is-the-Single-Greatest-Fruit-Nickname-In-Produce-History-509343301-Myasnikova-NataliMyasnikova Natali/shutterstockCertain sections of America have certain preferences when referring to certain things.  But other words are straightforward—the president is called the president, apples are apples, and avocados are avocados. Or one would think.

The etymology of the word “avocado” is based on the Spanish word aguacate, which was based on the native Nahuatl word ahuacate, which seems to have a rough translation that references a male sex organ.

Stepping away from anatomically-based names of yore, the avocado has another, more reptilian name; “alligator pear.” According to, this name came about not due to the seemingly scaly skin of the fruit, but due to a mislabelling and mispronunciation of its Spanish name, “avogado” by English speakers. By the way, here’s how to ripen avocados in just two minutes.

An English description of the fruit called it the “avogado pear,” which then morphed into “alligator pear.”  It wasn’t quite as simple as taking a look at the avocado and describing its color or description, and it definitely was not as simple as naming kitchen appliances.