How To: Make Your Own Natural Easter Egg Dye
Making your own natural egg dye for spring art projects or Easter Bunny hiding subjects is better for you, inexpensive, easy and a fun, family-friendly project with great looking and tasting rewards. (See Monday’s post for more information on the health impacts of traditional egg dyes) Here’s how to get started and a list of food combinations that resulted in the best, brightest and most interesting colors when I tried them out.
What you need: eggs, white vinegar, small ceramic bowls, a small cardboard box with ½ inch circle cut into the top where the eggs can sit to dry.
- Choose free range organic white eggs to ensure the best quality and nutritional value.
- Hard boil your eggs as usual (boil submersed in water for 10 minutes).
- Cool eggs by carefully running under cold water until cool to the touch. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.
- To make your dyes choose three or four colors to start (or if you are an ambitious egg artist choose as many as you can take on).
- Boil a large pot of water, divide boiling water into small ceramic bowls and add the recommended amount of food (see below) and vinegar for each color to each bowl.
- Let the color mixture sit for at least 10 minutes so the color from your chosen ingredients has time to steep.
- To dye your eggs place hardboiled white eggs into the bowl of the desired color and let sit for at least ten minutes (some colors require much longer soaking times and can be left to dye in the fridge overnight).
- Remove from dye and set on your prepared drying rack until dry.
- Brush any pieces of the food from the dye off the egg and store in the fridge or use immediately.
Colors and Combinations:
- 1 cup shredded beets, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 1/2 cups hot water
- 1 cup cranberries, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water (let cranberries boil in the water to maximize color release)
- 1 cup grape juice, 1 tablespoon vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
- 1 cup red onion skins, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water (let onion skins boil in the water for a few minutes to maximize color release)
- 1 cup shredded red cabbage, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
- ½ cup mashed blueberries, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
- 2 cup brewed coffee, 1 tablespoon vinegar
- 1 cup fresh grated carrots or carrot tops, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
- 1 tsp turmeric, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
- 1 tsp paprika, 1 tbsp vinegar, 2 ½ cups hot water
You can experiment with foods, quantities and colors until you find what works best for you. I even tried coco powder, which produced a beautiful light brown antique look and black sea salt, which left behind a very natural looking black speckled pattern.