Easter is right around the corner! Time to get your eggs dyed! There are many options out there: food coloring, dyeing pellets and kits, or just markers. However, none of these are truly safe.
As a mother with young children, I have been researching natural food based dyes. Everything my kids touch goes in their mouths, so I want the dye to be as safe as possible. I will feel better letting my children eat eggs dyed with blueberries and beets, rather than pellets.
Research is not conclusive, but some organizations warn against the use of artificial colors in food products. Some are made out of petroleum, a carcinogen. (source)
Common fruits and vegetables can make vibrant and amazing natural dyes that, honestly, look better than food coloring.
Check it out!
Short Produce Color List for Natural Dyes:
- Yellow onion skins = Yellow to dark orange
- Turmeric or cumin = Bright yellow
- Red beets = Pink to red
- Red onion skins = Pale purple to red
- Red cabbage = Blue (strange, but true)
- Spinach = Green
- Purple grape juice (use as is) = Lavender
- Coffee (use as is) = Tan to brown
- Chili powder = Orange
- Raspberries or blackberries = Pink to purple
- Yellow or green apple peels = Yellow-green
This is How You Dye the Eggs!
- Put 4 cups of chopped or mashed fruits or vegetables in a medium to large sized pot. If using a spice, use 4 tablespoons of spice.
- Add 4 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar.
- Place the eggs in the pot with the dye mixture and bring to a boil.
- Allow the mixture to boil for 10 minutes or until the fruits and vegetables have released their color.
- Turn off the heat and allow the mixture and eggs to cool slowly.
Decorations can be natural and fun, too. Create a treasure hunt with your kids to find cool leaves or flowers. Hold them in place with cut up pieces of pantyhose and prepare them as mentioned above.
Any fruit or vegetables that stain your fingers or mouth can be used. Try experimenting with some of your favorite goodies.