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How to Create a Rainbow with Natural Easter Egg Dyes

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Curious about natural Easter egg dyes? The natural colors you can get from food waste or common kitchen items is so much fun! See how much fun you can have creating a rainbow with natural easter egg dyes! Here’s how!

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How to Create a Rainbow with Natural Easter Egg Dyes

While the natural egg dyes might look a little different from commercial powders, dying eggs naturally is one experiment you should undertake with your kids this year!

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Materials for Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

You can find a lot of the materials you need for creating lovely Easter eggs in your kitchen, or foraged in your yard. Here are some materials you’ll need

  • wide mouth jars
  • slotted spoon or tongs
  • strainer
  • white vinegar
  • beets
  • yellow onion skins
  • turmeric
  • red cabbage
  • grape juice

What kind of eggs should you use?

You can use blown eggs or hard-boiled eggs – whichever your pleasure. If using blown eggs, you will need to weigh the eggs down in the dye to keep them from floating. 

You can use either white eggs or brown eggs. White eggs will yield a more vibrant color, but the moody colors of brown eggs are also pretty. Experiment with both and see which you like better!

We also used duck eggs which resulted in a pretty speckled color!

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 How to Dye Eggs Red Naturally

  • RED: Beets

In all honesty, I had the most difficulty with red and purple. We tried both fresh beets and canned beets. I thought the fresh beets yielded a much nicer color. The eggs soaked overnight in canned beet juice yield a light brownish color.

Even though the boiled dye was a rich red and stained my fingers and counter, it didn’t do a nice job with the eggs.

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How to Dy Eggs Orange Naturally

  • Orange: Onion skins

To dye lovely orange eggs, you’ll need the skins from at least six yellow onions. Bring them to boil with 4 cups water and 1 tablespoon white vinegar. Boil for 30 minutes, then let cool to room temperature.

For a rich orange color, soak a white egg overnight. For a peachy color, soak for up to two hours.

Another natural dye to try for orange is paprika. I have not tried this personally so your results may vary.

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How to Dye Eggs Yellow Naturally

  • Yellow: Turmeric

I thought yellow eggs were another of the easiest to dye. We mixed 6 tablespoons dried turmeric powder in 4 cups of water + 1 tablespoon white vinegar. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the turmeric. I found it didn’t dissolve all that well, honestly, but I liked the designs the thick resulting thick liquid left on our eggs.

Soak eggs for up to 2 hours for a paler yellow or overnight for a more vibrant yellow.

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How to Dye Eggs Green Naturally

Green can be tricky to achieve with natural dyes, but there are two possible ways to go about it. The first way is to dye a white egg blue, then dye it yellow to get fun shades of green. Alternate times in each dye bath to achieve different hues.

The second way to get a greenish color naturally is to dye a brown egg blue. Again, you will have to experiment with the timing to see what you end up with!

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How to Dye Eggs Blue Naturally

Aside from yellow, I think blue eggs are the easiest to get using natural egg dyes. Simply cut up a red cabbage and boil it in four cups of water with one tablespoon white vinegar. Let the dye cool to room temperature and then pour it in a wide mouth jar.

You can soak white eggs for as few as 15 minutes to overnight to get lovely blue shades.

Using blueberries is supposed to be another way to get blue eggs – I have not tried this! But if you do, please let me know how it works!

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How to Dye Purple Eggs Naturally

Purple: grape juice + vinegar

Aside from the red, the purple proved most challenging for us. We did end up accidentally with a few greys that could pass for lavender – but unfortunately, we did not end up with a rich purple color like I read is possible.

Another combo I have heard is possible is using hibiscus tea. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any during our eggspirmenting, so I will keep looking and try again!

I did find hibiscus tea on Amazon though, if you want to give it a try!

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Other natural dyes to try for dying Easter Eggs

Brown / Black Eggs:

Coffee beans, Black walnuts – I have not tried this combo, but we have a never ending supply of black walnuts, so I might give it a try one of these days.

Gray Eggs: You can end up with gray eggs by leaving the eggs in grape juice too long, or mixing the eggs in lots of different color combos.

Cranberries + vinegar: I tried this combo and it was fun listening to the cranberries pop as they boiled, but the color was a little disappointing.

Pomegranate + vinegar: Given how =badly pomegranates stain my fingers when we eat them, I had high hopes for pomegranates leaving a nice red dye behind. Sadly, that didn’t happen. The eggs were even lighter gray than the using cranberries.

How to dye eggs naturally

Yield: Naturally Dyed Easter Eggs

How to Create a Rainbow with Natural Easter Egg Dyes

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Experiment with food scraps and common spices to create beautiful, naturally dyed easter eggs!

Prep Time 20 minutes
Active Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 1 day
Total Time 1 day 50 minutes

Materials

  • white vinegar
  • beets
  • yellow onion skins
  • turmeric
  • red cabbage
  • grape juice

Tools

  • strainer
  • wide mouth jars
  • slotted spoon or tongs
  • strainer

Instructions

If you’re using your own farm fresh eggs, let the eggs soak in water and a few tablespoons white vinegar overnight to remove the protective layer of bloom from the egg. If you’re using eggs from the store, you can skip this step.

Collect one cup of dye material per color that you wish and bring it to boil with two cups of water. Simmer for 30 minutes. Then cool to room temperature, then strain out the material. Pour the water in a wide mouth jar.

Place hard boiled or blown out eggs eggs carefully in the prepared dye water. If using blown-out eggs, you will need to weigh them down to keep them submerged. We found a shot glass filled with a bit of water worked quite well.

Natural dyes take much longer to soak up on the eggshells than those little dye tablets you can buy at the store. Soaking overnight will yield the richest colors, but you can soak for as few as 15 minutes before you notice color. I’d recommend checking after 15 minutes, then at the one hour, then at the two hour mark. If you’re still not satisfied with the color, let the eggs soak overnight.

Notes

Play around with adding vinegar or leaving the vinegar out - creating fun color combos by soaking eggs in multiple colors. Feel free to draw designs on your eggs with crayons before dyeing.

Did you make this project?

Share a photo on Instagram tagging @simplifylivelove! I love to see your photos!

If you’re really interested in natural dyes, I highly recommend Janet Garman’s workbook Natural Dyes on Wool. It’s full of suggestions for achieving a rainbow with natural materials. While tested on wool and not eggs, the workbook is lovely and definitely motivational. I was really inspired by Janet’s new workbook!

 

You might like these Easter posts too!

Don’t forget to grow your own Easter Basket Grass to display your beautiful naturally dyed eggs!

Dye your Easter Eggs with Kool-Aid

Make Rainbow Waldorf Play Silks

Healthier Easter Basket Candy

Non Candy Easter Basket Items for Teens

Fun Science Experiments Using Eggs

Have you tried your luck at natural dyes? I’d love to hear your successes and failures!

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About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long time green living enthusiast and rural Iowa mom of four. An avid traveler, Michelle has lived on three different continents and has driven all four kids across the entire USA (by herself!). She loves sharing farm-to-table recipes, their family travel adventures, and gardening and homesteading tips on her popular lifestyle blog, SimplifyLiveLove.com.

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