How to Dye Eggs with Natural Dyes

By: Gretel H. Schueller

Use natural foods—like beets, onions and cabbage—to make beautifully colored eggs.

how to naturally dye eggs

Are you interested in coloring eggs naturally with food-based Easter egg dyes? We've developed a fool-proof technique and food-based dye recipes for for five natural Easter egg colorings: Yellow, Khaki Green, Red, Violet, Blue and Orange. Plus we offer up our secrets for how to make perfect hard-boiled eggs. Grab your eggs to get started. Happy Easter!

Step 1

Wash and gently scrub white eggs to remove any debris. Hard-boil, if desired, but leave the shell on.

Step 2

To prepare dyes, set out as many bowls as colors you want to prepare.

Step 3

Pour 2 cups boiling water over each natural dye; let steep for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 hours to extract the color.

Strain the dyeing liquid (see below for which foods to use for which color combinations) from the bowls (except for the turmeric).

Stir 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar into each color of dye; add 3-4 eggs to each color. Refrigerate the eggs in the dyes for at least 4 hours or up to 1 day. Longer soaking will give a more vivid color, but limit soak time to 24 hours.

Remove eggs from the dye with a slotted spoon. Let dry on a wire rack. If you plan to eat the eggs, refrigerate for up to 1 week.

dying eggs

Natural Egg Coloring Recipes

Add one "natural dye" to each bowl:

Blue
1/4 head red cabbage cut into 2-inch chunks

Violet
1 large beet, cut into chunks

Green
Outer loose skin from 8 red onions

Orange
Outer loose skin from 8 yellow onions

Yellow
1 tablespoon ground turmeric

How to Make Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs

Place eggs in a single layer in a saucepan; cover with 1 inch of water. Bring just to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and cook at the barest simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, immediately pour out hot water and cover the eggs with ice-cold water. Let stand until cool enough to handle before peeling.

Refrigerate hard-boiled eggs for up to 1 week.