Thursday, April 21, 2011

The Love of a Bohemian Mama: Eggs, Naturally

I am super excited for the Easter festivities this weekend, especially our community egg hunt! But, this bohemian, earth loving, Mama is not a fan of the plastic eggs. So I was thrilled to discover some very cool recipes for dyeing eggs, naturally! Using common flowers, herbs, and foods, you can feel wonderful knowing your kids are enjoying a non-toxic and eco-friendly Easter tradition. 

Recipe for making all natural egg dyes 
  • Wash hard-cooked (boiled) eggs in warm soapy water to remove any oily residue that may impede the color from adhering to the eggs. Let eggs cool before attempting to dye.
  • You need to use your own judgment about exactly how much of each dye stuff to use. Except for spices, place a handful (or two or three handfuls) of a dyestuff in a saucepan.
  • Add tap water to come at least one inch above the dye stuff.  NOTE: This will be about 1 cup of water for each handful of dyestuff.
  • Bring the water just to a boil, and then reduce the heat to low. Let simmer about 15 minutes or up to an hour until you like the color obtained. Keep in mind that dyed eggs will not get as dark as the color in the pan. Remove the pan from the heat.  
  • Pour mixture into a liquid measuring cup. Add 2 to 3 teaspoons of white vinegar for each cup of strained dye liquid. Pour the mixture into a bowl or jar that is deep enough to completely cover the eggs you want to dye.
  • Use a slotted spoon  to lower the eggs into the hot liquid. Leave the eggs in the water until you like the color. NOTE: Allow the egg to sit in the tea for several hours or overnight. The longer the egg soaks, the deeper the final color will be. If you plan to eat the eggs be sure to do this step in the refrigerator.
  • When eggs are dyed to the color you desire, lift the eggs out with the slotted spoon. Let them dry on a rack or drainer. NOTE: An egg carton works nicely as a drying rack. Be careful to handle the eggs gently and minimally as some of the colors can easily be rubbed off before the egg has dried.
  • For a textured look, dab the still wet egg with a sponge.
  • Eggs colored with natural dyes have a dull finish and are not glossy. After they are dry, you can rub the eggs with cooking oil or mineral oil to give them a soft sheen.


Items To Dye With

Canned Blueberries
Red Cabbage Leaves (boiled)
Purple Grape Juice
Brown or Beige

Strong Coffee
Instant Coffee
Black Walnut Shells (boiled)
Black Tea
Brown Gold

Dill Seeds
Brown Orange

Chili Powder


Spinach Leaves (boiled)
Liquid Chlorophyll
Greenish Yellow

Yellow Delicious Apple Peels (boiled)

Purple or red grape juice or beet juice

Small Quantity of Purple Grape Juice
Violet Blossoms plus 2 tsp Lemon Juice
Red Zinger Tea

Yellow Onion Skins (boiled)

Cranberries or Juice
Red Grape Juice
Juice from Pickled Beets

Lots of Red Onions Skins (boiled)
Pomegranate juice
Canned Cherries (with syrup)
Violet or Purple

Violet Blossoms
Hibiscus tea
Small Quantity of Red Onions Skins (boiled)
Red Wine

Orange or Lemon Peels (boiled)
Carrot Tops (boiled)
Chamomile Tea
Celery Seed (boiled)
Green tea
Ground Cumin (boiled)
Ground Turmeric (boiled) or Saffron


  1. Love!! so cute....I want to do this like now. :-)
    xxx Emily of EL Vintage

  2. I'm so glad you posted this, Samantha. I've been wondering how I could dye my eggs naturally but didn't know where to begin looking. Thank you! I can't wait to try it.

  3. great post - hope you have a great easter weekend!

  4. What a wonderful idea-and so much better than tons of artificial dye! I'll be making a half dozen red eggs for cracking (thank goodness my parents taught me all sorts of odd Greek Orthodox Easter traditions)!

  5. oo, this sounds absolutely lovely! you can also use molten candle wax or white crayon on the pre-dyed egg as a resist. after the egg is colored, you can melt the wax off with a flame. thanks so much for sharing!

  6. YOU RULE!!! Have a fantastic holiday. xoxo

  7. Another good tip - when you cook the eggs with some onion skins, it gets great dark brown color. Than I usually decorate them with a stripe of a white lace and to make the color more glossy, I use a hand cream to polish it.


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