As a child, my sisters and I always looked forward to our family tradition of dying Easter eggs to put in our baskets to take to church to have blessed. Ashley loved to dye the eggs more than one color by dipping half of the egg into one color then the other side of the egg into another color. Kate loved to doodle with white crayon on the eggs before dying them to leave designs in white on the eggs after coming out of the dye. And me, I loved (and still love) to get the richest colors possible, which meant hogging the colors as my eggs soaked forever!
While we were making a mess with the artificial dyes from the store, my mom would try a new method for coloring eggs naturally. From beets to tumeric to purple cabbage, she fiddled around with different fruits, vegetables and spices to get to the bottom of what worked best. Below are some of her findings…
For red eggs: The peels of red onions
Peels of 5 Red Onions
6 Cups of Water
1 T. Vinegar
Boil the skins in the water and vinegar for 30 minutes. For a speckled/molted look, leave the skins in while soaking the eggs. For a more uniform color, remove skins, then soak the eggs
For blue eggs: Purple cabbage
10 cups Water
1/2 Head of Red Cabbage
3 T. Vinegar
Boil for the cabbage, water and vinegar together for 30 minutes. Remove the cabbage then soak the eggs. If you want a really intense blue, soak the eggs overnight.
I haven’t had luck with green eggs, but have read that spinach will work if you use baking soda instead of vinegar. Maybe I’ll give it a go this year!
Happy Egg Dying!
For purple eggs: Frozen blueberries
2 cups Frozen Blueberries
3 cups of Water
1 T. Vinegar
Bring all ingredients to a boil, then simmer for 30 minutes. Remove blueberries if you don’t want variations in color when soaking the eggs. To get anywhere near a dark color with blueberries, the eggs really need to soak for 4-5 hours.
For yellow eggs: Tumeric
5 cups Water
1/4 c. Turmeric
2 T. Vinegar
Boil all ingredients for 5 minutes then reduce to a simmer for 30 minutes. After simmering, filter the turmeric dye mixture through a coffee filter inside a strainer to get rid of the excess turmeric. Soak eggs until desired color is reached.