Dyeing Easter eggs with natural ingredients is not always reliable. Take, for example, hibiscus. When I compiled a list of natural dyes a few years ago, it was said to make a beautiful pink. However, when I actually tested it the egg turned dark green. Oops.
After experimenting with everything from lemon peels and carrots to raspberries and grape juice, I’ve narrowed down my list to a few ingredients that consistently yield beautiful, vibrant colors. You’ll find them below along with the specific recipes I used.
What about dyeing eggs with silk?
Over the past few couple of I’ve received a few questions about whether it’s safe to dye eggs with men’s silk ties. Although silk dyed eggs are beautiful and silk is definitely natural, some of the dyes used to color ties are toxic. Scientific American recommends wearing a mask or working in a well-ventilated area while making them, and advises against eating them.
Pink Easter Egg Dye Recipe
Two cups water + two cups peeled, grated beets + vinegar (1 tablespoon per cup of liquid that remains after you simmer the grated beets and water)
Orange Easter Egg Dye Recipe
2 cups yellow onion peels + enough water to cover skins by 1 inch + vinegar (1 tablespoon per cup of liquid that remains after you simmer the onion peels and water)
Yellow Easter Egg Dye Recipe
Two cups water + 1 tablespoon turmeric + 2 tablespoons vinegar creates this vibrant yellow on white eggs and a deep gold on brown ones. The egg to the left of the one marked “turmeric” above is an example of what a brown egg looks like.
Other options: Strongly brewed chamomile tea creates a soft yellow.
Green / Blue Easter Egg Dye Recipe
2 cups shredded purple cabbage + enough water to cover cabbage by 1 inch + vinegar (1 tablespoon per remaining cup after the dye is boiled)
Brown eggs will turn green and white eggs will turn blue.
Other options: Strongly brewed hibiscus tea (with one tablespoon vinegar per cup) will create the dark green pictured in the photo at the top. Blueberries will create a slightly marbled blue color.)
Purple Easter Egg Dye Recipe
How To Dye Eggs Naturally
- Natural dye materials (shredded beets, turmeric, etc)
- Filtered water
- 1 tablespoon vinegar per dye color
- pots for simmering ingredients and boiling eggs
- mesh strainer
- small bowls or mason jars (order mason jars here)
- coconut or olive oil (optional – for adding luster to eggs)
Directions For Making Easter Egg Dye:
- Bring dye matter and water to a boil. Turn heat down to low and simmer, covered, for 15-60 minutes until desired color is reached. Keep in mind that the eggs will be several shades lighter so it’s best to go for deep, rich hues.
- Remove liquid from heat and let cool to room temperature.
- Pour dye through a mesh strainer into bowls/mason jars and add 1 tablespoon of vinegar for each cup of dye liquid.
- Add hardboiled eggs to dye and place in fridge until desired color is reached. I started mine in the early afternoon and let them set overnight.
Directions For Eggs:
- Add eggs to a medium pot and cover with cold water. Bring pot to a boil. Once it’s rolling turn off the heat and cover the pot. After 10 minutes, place eggs in a bowl of cold water and let sit until they’re cool to the touch.
- Drain bowl and replace with warm, soapy water – I use castille soap. Gently rub eggs with a washcloth or your thumb to remove oils that prohibit natural dyes from adhering as effectively to the egg shell.
- Lower egg into the dye and place them in the fridge. Soak until your desired color is reached.
- When the eggs are ready scoop them out with a spoon and place on a drying rack or an upside down egg carton.
- Naturally-dyed eggs have a matte finish. If you’d like to add a little luster, rub with a drop or two of coconut or olive oil.
This post first appeared on How To Dye Eggs Naturally With Everyday Ingredients
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