How To Naturally Dye Easter Eggs

Dyeing Easter eggs was one of my favorite Easter traditions growing up. We would dye the eggs and place them into a basket filled with green plastic grass. It was something I looked forward to each year, along with decorating our Easter tree with fuzzy chicks, plastic eggs, and painted bunny ornaments. We would go to the grocery store down the street from our home to buy a dozen white eggs and the PAAS Easter Egg dyeing kit to color the eggs. Then we would head home to hard boil the eggs before coloring. After the eggs were cooked and cooled (and after gagging a little from the smell), my sister and I would take the wax pencil that was included in the dye kit and draw shapes and patterns onto the eggs. We would then dip the eggs into the dye and watch the eggs turn fun shades of red, yellow, orange, green, and hues of blues & purples. Do you remember the small sheet of stickers that came with the dye kit, stickers you would stick to the egg after it was colored? Well truth be told, I never liked or used the stickers on the eggs! It drove me nuts that the flat sticker wouldn’t fully stick to the round egg. (You can see that my obsession in attention to detail started at an early age.) We would save the stickers for other craft projects, ones that didn’t include sticking stickers to round objects. Once the eggs were colored, my mom would eventually make deviled eggs, or egg salad, or creamed eggs on toast. Now the difference between the home I grew up in and my home today…you will not find any of those egg recipes in my house (we are not fans of hard boiled eggs)!

When my children were younger, I used to buy the same dye kits. However, in our home these days, we are more conscience of the food we eat, the cleaners we use, and the overall ingredients of the food or products we bring into our home and put into our bodies. I typically only purchase organic foods and all natural cleaners for our home. So this year, I decided to dye our Easter eggs with natural ingredients from foods/spices we already had in our refrigerator and in our pantry. We used red cabbage, turmeric, and beets to dye our Easter eggs which resulted in eggs shaded in beautiful spring pastels of blue, yellow, and pink. I think they look like oversized Cadbury mini eggs, don’t you?! There are a bunch of other natural foods & drinks that you can use to dye your eggs with too, continue reading to the end of this blog post for more foods you can use for dyeing. This dyeing process is easy and one I really enjoyed, and think you will enjoy also!

Before starting the dyeing process, I recommend preparing a working area to handle these highly staining dyes. They will stain everything from cutting boards, to clothes, to kitchen counters! Wear an apron or clothes that you are ok getting stains on. Cover your work area with a plastic tablecloth, old towels, or lots of newspapers and/or paper towels before beginning.

You will need one dozen hard boiled white eggs.

BLUE EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 1/2 head read cabbage (cut into 1/8 strips)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place sliced cabbage and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil, then cover and remove from heat. Let stand for 1 hour. Pour mixture through a colander to remove cabbage; discard solids. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 20 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. (Note: Eggs will appear lavender after removing from dye. Dye will transform to a more blueish shade within a few minutes.) Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

YELLOW EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place turmeric and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil then remove from heat. Let sit until cool. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

PINK EASTER EGG DYE:

  • 1 medium beet (washed and quartered)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  1. Place beet and water in a medium sized pot over high heat. Bring to boil, then cover and remove from heat. Let stand for 1 hour. Pour mixture through a colander to remove beets; discard solids. Stir in vinegar. Your dye is ready for use.
  2. To dye, fill a mason jar about 1/2 full with dye, and gently lower in egg. Let sit for about 30 minutes, turning occasionally.
  3. Using a slotted spoon, carefully remove egg from dye and set on a paper towel to dry. Turn eggs occasionally so all sides dry, eggs are typically dry in about 15-20 minutes. Once mostly dry, wipe off any excess dye with paper towels.

Easter Egg Dyeing Tips:

  • Let eggs sit in dye baths for a longer period of time. The longer the eggs are in the bath, the deeper the colors will become (can even soak overnight in the fridge). For lighter shades, remove from dye bath sooner.
  • Be creative when dying your eggs and think outside the box. Dip half an egg in one color dye and the other half in another color dye for a two toned egg!
  • Rub a small amount of olive oil on your eggs for a little added shine.
  • No white eggs? You can use brown eggs too, however the dye colors will be more muted.
  • Use other natural ingredients to dye your eggs. Here are some other natural ingredients great for dying due to their high color pigmentation: yellow onion skins, blueberries, grape juice, parsley, avocado pits, spinach, carrot juice, tea, coffee.

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