I decided to try my hand at making Easter Eggs using only natural ingredients this year. I pulled food and spices out of the cabinet and fridge and got busy trying different things to see what works and what doesn’t.
I remember my mom and grandma using red onion skins to dye eggs when I was child, but I don’t remember how they dyed the eggs using them. A little research and I had an idea of how to go about dyeing the eggs using natural ingredients.
I used the following items to dye eggs:
Blueberry + Cranberry Juice
Alan is quite the trooper. He came home and saw my little experiment going on in the kitchen and just took it in stride. These bowls took up about 75% of my counter space so nothing else would be happening in the kitchen (ie: cooking dinner) until the experiment was over. The items that you see at the far left of the image are some of the ingredients for my super tonic that I’ll be sharing with you soon.
I left the eggs in the solution for 2.5 hours, 5 hours, and 9 hours just to see what kind of colors occurred over long periods.
At 2.5 hours some of the eggs could have been considered done, but I wanted to see the results from leaving them in longer.
At five hours the red cabbage eggs are turning a beautiful color blue.
Nine hours was too long. I could have been done at 2.5, perhaps sooner, for most of the eggs and 5 hours for the turmeric and red cabbage.
Some of the eggs could have come out of the solution right away and some others needed the full 9 hours. I’m sharing the “how to” for each egg below.
Here are the eggs after 9 hours in the liquid and air drying. The only exception is the two different blueberry eggs in the chart. The one in the upper right corner is blueberry and cranberry juice after nine hours and the eggs in the lower left is eggs just rolled in blueberry juice and removed immediately. The yellow onion was also only left in for a couple hours. I done those two sets of eggs the next day so didn’t include them in the 9 hour experiment.
I displayed the eggs in these awesome martini glasses and LOVED how they looked. I just added a bit of spanish moss to nestle them on.
NATURAL DYED EASTER EGGS INSTRUCTIONS
I used two different methods to make these eggs; a cold method and a hot method.
For the majority of these eggs I used the cold method. Just mix the ingredients in a non-staining bowl (ie: glass is great) and add hard boiled eggs. Let them sit until the desired color is achieved.
For the hot method I added the ingredients and raw eggs to a non-aluminum pan, brought the mixture to a boil, reduced the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit until eggs achieve the desired color.
The method used is noted in the directions below.
NOTE: The eggs may take on the flavor of the coloring agent.
YELLOW ONION SKINS: 1 cup of water, room temp + dry peel from one medium yellow onion + 1/8 cup of white vinegar (cold method). This combination will color one egg. Instead of throwing dry onion skins away during the year you can save them to color Easter eggs in the Spring. (The little dash of blue you see on the left side of the egg is from a rogue blueberry that ended up in the pan.
TEA: 3 tea bags+1 cup steaming hot water+1/8 cup of white vinegar (cold method). Steep the tea bags to make very strong tea. Add eggs and let sit in water until desired color is achieved.
BLUEBERRIES: 1/2 cup frozen blueberries (thawed & smashed) + 2 Tablespoons white vinegar (cold method). Roll eggs until color is achieved and then remove. These took just a couple minutes to make.
RED ONION SKINS: 1 Cup water + dry peel from 1 large red onion + 1/8 cup white vinegar (hot method). This combination colored 2 eggs. As with the yellow onion skins, red onion skins can be saved throughout the year as well.
TURMERIC: 2 cups warm water+ 3 tablespoons turmeric + 1/8 cup white vinegar (cold method). This ended up being one of my favorite colors. The turmeric creates a beautiful yellow color that reminds me of spring. The darker areas are where the egg sat on undissolved turmeric.
CAYENNE PEPPER: 2 cups warm water + 3 tablespoons cayenne pepper + 1/8 cup white vinegar (cold method). The speckles are created from the undissolved cayenne pepper.
RED CABBAGE: 1/2 of red cabbage head, chopped up + 1/8 cup white vinegar + 4 eggs + enough water to cover eggs (hot method). I love, love, love this color. The egg with white speckles/lines was created by wrapping an egg in a cabbage leaf and securing with a rubber band and then adding to pan with the other ingredients.
BLUEBERRY/CRANBERRY JUICE: 1 cup frozen blueberries, thawed and smashed, 1/2 cup 100% cranberry juice + 1/8 cup white vinegar (cold method). I’m not sure how much impact the cranberry juice had on the color but I needed some liquid for the eggs to sit in and I didn’t want to dilute it with water so I used some cranberry juice. 9 hours was too long, in my opinion, for these eggs. I thought they were perfect around 2.5 hours for a light spring color.
CHILI POWDER: 2 cups warm water + 3 tablespoons chili powder + 1/8 cup white vinegar (cold method). Eh, wouldn’t make these again. The color reminded me a lot of brown eggs.
COFFEE: 1 cup of very strong brewed coffee + 1/8 cup white vinegar (cold method). This egg was a little darker, but I wiped the egg off after taking it out of the liquid and ended up with this light tan color.
Thanks to reader Charity Woods for bringing up the safety issue of consuming eggs that have sat out. I neglected to mention this in my post so please be advised of the following: “Do not eat hard boiled eggs that have been left out for more than 2 hours. Refrigerate hard boiled eggs within 2 hours 45degrees or less, eat within 1 week! Raw eggs can only be left out for 2 hours or less also. We don’t want people out there getting sick.”
Have you tried dyeing eggs using natural ingredients? What have you used?