Whether you’re looking for an easy Easter activity for the kids, or don’t want to use food coloring or dye pills, here’s how to naturally dye Easter Eggs using food.
Since this method doesn’t use commercial dyes or solvents, it’s kid-friendly. So, pick your favorite colors from the list below, set up your egg-coloring station, and get ready to dye — in a fun way!
How To Naturally Dye Easter Eggs
- Baking racks and sheet pans for drying
- Distilled white vinegar
- Ingredients for your preferred colors (see below)
- Glass jars or ceramic bowls for soaking
- Boil the eggs or follow my recipe to make hard “boiled” eggs in your oven, if you need to make dozens at the same time. Dry them well.
- Pick one or more colors from the chart below and mix the ingredients in separate jars or bowls. Add the eggs, cover, and refrigerate overnight.
- Once you’re satisfied with the color, use tongs or a slotted spoon to lift the eggs out of the dye. Place the eggs where they can air dry. (I use baking racks set over sheet pans.)
- You can now reuse the color to make more eggs or discard it.
How to Dye Easter Eggs with Food
Although food-based Easter egg dyes are non-toxic and natural, they can still stain your clothes. So, be sure to wear a crafting smock or apron to protect your clothing.
Then tinker away — half the fun of naturally dyeing Easter eggs is playing with your food!
How Long to Soak Easter Eggs in Natural Coloring
This process takes more time than other coloring methods, so you’ll need to plan accordingly. The longer you leave eggs in the coloring, the deeper and more vibrant they’ll get.
Don’t worry — hard-boiled eggs stay good for a week in their shells.
- Deeply jewel-toned eggs: 3 days.
- Pastel colors: 24 hours.
Foods to Use Coloring Easter Eggs
Lavender: 2 cups purple grape juice and 1 teaspoon vinegar.
Violet: Boil the skins from 4 purple onions in 2 cups water. Strain and let fully cool before adding eggs.
Medium blue: Cut 1/2 red cabbage into chunks. Boil in 2 cups water and stir in 2 tsp. vinegar. Let cool and strain liquid.
Light blue: Mix a 10-oz. box of frozen blueberries with 2 cups of warm water. Let berries steep in the water for 1 hour then strain.
Light green: Boil a 10-oz box of frozen spinach in 2 cups water for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in 1 tsp. vinegar. Let cool to room temperature, strain and add eggs.
Yellow-green: Boil the peels from 6-8 green apples in 2 cups water for 15 minutes. Let cool, stir in 2 tsp. white vinegar, and strain.
Brown: Steep 1/2 cup of coffee grounds in 2 cups cold water for 1 hour. Strain.
Orange: Chop 6 carrots into coins and boil in 2 cups water for 10 minutes. Stir in 1 tsp. vinegar. Strain.
Light orange-red: Stir 4 tbsp. paprika into 2 cups boiling water. Stir in 2 tsp. vinegar. Let cool to room temperature then strain.
Pink: Use the juice from 2 cans of beets, or boil 2 thinly sliced beets in 2 cup water for 10 minutes. Strain and allow it to reach room temperature before adding eggs.
Pinkish-red: Combine 2 cups cranberry or cherry juice and 1 tsp. vinegar. Add eggs.
Golden Yellow: Steep 3 teaspoons of turmeric and 1 teaspoon of dry ground mustard in 2 cups of hot water. Allow this to reach room temperature then strain and add eggs.
Adding Designs to Naturally-Dyed Easter Eggs
The Marbled Look: You can get some interesting patterns by not straining ingredients before adding the eggs. Turn the eggs two or three times while they’re soaking, and you’ll get a neat marbled effect.
Patterns: Add polka dots, lines and other patterns with a Crayon. Blast the Crayon for a few seconds with your hairdryer to warm it, then draw on the egg while the wax is still soft. Wait a minute then begin soaking the egg in coloring. Once dyed and dry, use the edge of a spoon or credit card to scrape the Crayon off the shell.
Glossy: To add a beautiful shine to the eggs after dying, dip a soft cloth into a small amount of cooking oil and lightly buff the eggs.