Try both fresh and frozen produce. Canned produce will produce much paler colors. Boiling the colors with vinegar will result in deeper colors. Some materials need to be boiled to impart their color (name followed by 'boiled' in the table). Some of the fruits, vegetables, and spices can be used cold. To use a cold material, cover the boiled eggs with water, add dyeing materials, a teaspoon or less of vinegar, and let the eggs remain in the refrigerator until the desired color is achieved. In most cases, the longer you leave Easter eggs in the dye, the more deeply colored they will become.
Here is the preferred method for using natural dyes:
- Place the eggs in a single layer in a pan. Add water until the eggs are covered.
- Add approximately one teaspoon of vinegar.
- Add the natural dye. Use more dye material for more eggs or for a more intense color.
- Bring water to a boil.
- Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes.
- If you are pleased with the color, remove the eggs from the liquid.
- If you want more intensely colored eggs, temporarily remove the eggs from the liquid. Strain the dye through a coffee filter (unless you want speckled eggs). Cover the eggs with the filtered dye and let them remain in the refrigerator overnight.
- Naturally-colored eggs will not be glossy, but if you want a shiny appearance you can rub a bit of cooking oil onto the eggs once they are dry.
Natural Easter Egg Dyes
|Lavender||Small Quantity of Purple Grape Juice |
Violet Blossoms plus 2 tsp Lemon Juice
Red Zinger Tea
|Violet Blue||Violet Blossoms |
Small Quantity of Red Onions Skins (boiled)
|Blue||Canned Blueberries |
Red Cabbage Leaves (boiled)
Purple Grape Juice
|Green||Spinach Leaves (boiled) |
|Greenish Yellow||Yellow Delicious Apple Peels (boiled)|
|Yellow||Orange or Lemon Peels (boiled) |
Carrot Tops (boiled)
Celery Seed (boiled)
Ground Cumin (boiled)
Ground Turmeric (boiled)
|Golden Brown||Dill Seeds|
|Brown||Strong Coffee |
Black Walnut Shells (boiled)
|Orange||Yellow Onion Skins (boiled) |
Cranberries or Juice
Red Grape Juice
Juice from Pickled Beets
|Red||Lots of Red Onions Skins (boiled)|
Canned Cherries with Juice