Dyeing Easter Eggs, Naturally

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It’s time to dye eggs, naturally!


Gather together a few dozen eggs and your favorite crafty fingers this weekend and you’ll be continuing an ancient tradition celebrating rebirth, creation, and healing. Cultures have been decorating, dyeing, waxing, and carving eggs from the southern tip of the African continent to Eastern Europe for nearly 60,000 years. 
We’ve been experimenting with dyes from vegetables to powders for a few days, and here are some of our favorites! Should you choose to forgo the dying, visit your local farmers’ market for naturally colored eggs (various breeds lay eggs ranging from blue to dusty rose and even dark brown, chocolate-colored eggs) or purchase green and blue eggs from natural food stores, usually from pasture-raised brands like Kaliko Farms or Vital Farms


Most egg dying requires either a tablet (it’s acidic!) or vinegar to dissolve into the dying liquid; their acidity allows the color to bond more easily to the porous eggshell. The more vinegar you use, the more saturation you’ll get from most of your dyes. If you want a more speckled surface, increase the ratio of vinegar to water. For smooth, well-saturated coloration, stick with 2 teaspoons of vinegar for every cup of water. We prefer submerging our eggs in water for best results, so in a 6 qt pot, you’ll find 4 cups of water, 1 Tbsp of vinegar works best for whatever coloring you’re planning on using.


Hard-boil eggs ahead of time. Place a single layer of eggs, without crowding, in a saucepot. Cover the eggs with two inches of water. Bring the water to a rolling boil. Turn the heat off, cover the pot and allow the eggs to sit for 10 minutes. Once cooled, carefully remove the eggs and place them on a kitchen towel to dry.


Coloring eggs coloring with vegetables: Pink: Peel and cut two large red beets and place them in a stockpot with 1 Tbsp vinegar and your 4 cups of water. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Gently place your cooked eggs in the pot and allow them to sit in the liquid for a few minutes. Using a slotted spoon, move the eggs to a carton or cooling rack to dry. Repeat if a deeper color is desired.


Deep yellow/ Orange: Place 2 Tbsps ground turmeric into a pot and add 4 cups water and 1 Tbsp white vinegar. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Gently place your cooked eggs in the pot and allow them to sit in the liquid for a few minutes. Using a slotted spoon, move the eggs to a carton or cooling rack to dry. Repeat if a deeper color is desired.

easter braided egg bread


Sapphire blue: Slice up one red cabbage and vinegar. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes. Gently place your cooked eggs in the pot and allow them to sit in the liquid for a couple of hours. Using a slotted spoon, move the eggs to a carton or cooling rack to dry. Repeat if a deeper color is desired.


Coloring with natural powders: We experimented with Color Kitchen’s powders, our go-to coloring for baking and decorating. Each individual packet dyed 6 eggs when stirred with 2 Tbsps water and 1 tsp vinegar. Each of the colors, ranging from blue to deep pink, are easy to sponge or paint on!

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