by Feli Chic'Cuisine
Transform your Easter eggs into stunning works of art with the use of natural pigments. Dyeing eggs with natural pigments is a beautiful and eco-friendly way to showcase your creativity and celebrate this holiday. Discover how you can color eggs naturally by using pigments derived from plants and spices. Give this method of egg dyeing a try this year and unleash your artistic talents!
With natural pigments, you can avoid harsh chemicals and artificial dyes while also benefiting from the health properties of the plants and spices you use. There are many options for natural pigments, such as red cabbage, beetroot, turmeric, onion skins, and even coffee. Each of these ingredients will yield a unique and beautiful color when used to dye eggs.
Using natural pigments to dye your Easter eggs is not only fun and creative, but it also promotes a sustainable and healthy lifestyle. So gather your natural pigments, get creative, and create beautiful Easter eggs to decorate your home and share with loved ones.
Benefits of naturally dyed Easter eggs
Using natural dyes to color Easter eggs has numerous benefits. Not only is it a healthier and eco-friendly alternative to artificial dyes, but it also offers the following advantages:
Color Variation: Natural dyes provide a wider range of colors, giving you the opportunity to create unique and stunning Easter eggs that stand out from the usual commercial options.
Creativity: Dyeing Easter eggs with natural pigments can be a fun and creative activity for the whole family. You can experiment with various dyeing techniques like marbling and speckling to create exciting and innovative patterns on the eggs.
Health: Using natural dyes ensures that the dyed Easter eggs are free from harmful chemicals and safe for both children and adults to consume.
Eco-Friendly: Natural dyes are obtained from natural sources such as fruits, vegetables, and spices, making them an environmentally friendly option. They do not contribute to water pollution, unlike synthetic dyes which can harm aquatic life.
Dyeing Easter eggs naturally can be a rewarding and enriching experience for everyone involved. It promotes a healthier lifestyle, creativity, and an appreciation for natural materials, while also being gentle on the environment.
About dyeing eggs with natural pigments
Experimenting with natural pigments to dye Easter eggs can result in a range of colors and shades, depending on the plant or spice used and the time left in the dye. Using leftover vegetables and spices like yellow and red onion leaves, red cabbage, beetroot, and turmeric can produce a variety of hues that can result in spectacular, one-of-a-kind eggs when oiled for a sheen.
The concentration of dye extracted from the plants and ingredients, the natural color of the eggs, and the duration of the immersion in the dye can all affect the final color of the eggs. A longer immersion time can produce a deeper and richer tone, while a shorter time may result in a lighter color. The intensity of the color also depends on the type and concentration of the natural pigment used. For instance, some pigments may be stronger than others and produce more vibrant colors even with shorter immersion times.
To dye eggs naturally, begin by boiling the natural pigment in a pot with water and vinegar. Once the pigment has been extracted, submerge your hard-boiled eggs into the dye and let them soak until they reach the desired shade. You can also experiment with patterns and designs by using stickers or rubber bands to create a resist effect before dyeing.
This year, I decided to go one step further and create a larger palette for colouring eggs with vegetable scraps and spices. I used both yellow and red onions skin, red cabbage, beets and turmeric. In the end, the results were a palette of colour that produces pretty spectacular eggs, especially when they are rubbed with oil.
Preparing Eggs and Natural Sources
Before dyeing eggs with natural pigments, it's important to prepare the eggs and the dyeing materials. White eggs are ideal for dyeing, and they should be thoroughly cleaned of any impurities before boiling them. Once the eggs are boiled and cooled to room temperature, they are ready for dyeing.
To create natural pigments for dyeing, you can use a variety of sources such as red or yellow onion leaves, beetroot, turmeric, and other herbs or ingredients. Boil the natural sources of pigments in water to create a dye solution, preferably in stainless steel pots that won't stain. Allow the dye solution to cool before adding the pre-boiled eggs to it.
The duration of soaking the eggs in the dye solution depends on the desired color intensity. For a light color, soak the eggs for about 30 minutes, while a deeper and richer color requires several hours of soaking. The natural pigments and their concentrations can also affect the color intensity, so it's important to experiment to find the right combination.
Once the eggs have reached the desired color, remove them from the dyeing solution and place them on absorbent paper to dry completely. After they are dry, you can apply oil to the eggs to give them a shiny finish. Use a cloth or paper towel to apply the oil evenly. Finally, arrange the eggs in baskets or trays for display. With a little creativity you can create beautiful and unique Easter eggs using natural pigments.
Natural pigments and the resulting colors
Natural dyes for Easter eggs can produce different colours, depending on the eggs you use, white or brown, as well as other factors like the amount of ingredients used or how long they are left in colour. You can expect the following colours:
Chart of colours for white pre-boiled egg
Lavender ~ colour obtained from red onion skins
Orange ~ colour obtained from yellow onion skins
Yellow ~ colour obtained from turmeric
Light blue ~ colour obtained from red cabbage
Pink ~ colour obtained from beets
Chart of colours for brown pre-boiled egg
Red or Rusty-red ~ colour obtained from red onion skins
Burnt Orange ~ colour obtained from yellow onion skins
Yellow ~ colour obtained from turmeric
Blue or Grey ~ colour obtained from red cabbage
Bright pink ~ colour obtained from beets
Note about this recipe
In this recipe, I'll walk you through the steps to create beautiful colors using natural pigments like red onion leaves, red beetroot, red cabbage, and cucumber powder (turmeric).
To dye with beetroot, red cabbage, and turmeric, I boiled the eggs first. But for onion leaves, I boiled them along with the foil.
To intensify the colors, you can leave the eggs in the coloring liquid overnight or put the bowl of eggs and coloring liquid in the refrigerator for a few hours. Below are the step-by-step instructions to achieve the colors shown in the images.
Red onion leaves & beetroot - brown eggs - final, red-rust eggs
Red cabbage - brown eggs - final, dark green to gray
white or brown eggs, at room temperature, pre-boiled or row
red onion skin
yellow onion skin
How to Dye the Eggs with beets - Red colour
In a large pot, place 6 medium beets - cut into chunks - add 4 -6 cups water. Stir in 100 ml white vinegar and bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Strain the liquid for dyeing and soak the pre-boiled eggs for at least 3 hours.
How to Dye the Eggs with turmeric - Yellow colour
In a large bowl, place 6 tablespoons turmeric. Pour 6 cups of boiling water over the turmeric, stir until dissolved, and let steep for at least 20-25 minutes to extract the colour. Stir 100 ml vinegar into the dyeing liquid and soak the pre-boiled eggs for at least 3 hours.
How to Dye the Eggs with Purple Cabbage - Blue colour
In a large pot, place one head of purple cabbage - cut into chunks or shredded - add 4-6 cups water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Strain the liquid for dyeing. Stir in 100 ml white vinegar and soak the pre-boiled eggs for at least 3 ours.
How to Dye the Eggs with Yellow Onion Skin - Orange colour
In a large pot, place the row eggs and skin from 8 yellow onions, add 8 cups water and 100 ml vinegar. Boil for at least 12-15 minutes, until the eggs have the desired colour.
How to Dye the Eggs with Red Onion Skin - Lavender or Rusty-Red colour
In a large pot, place the row eggs and skin from 8 red onions, add 8 cups water and 100 ml vinegar. Boil for at least 12-15 minutes.
When your eggs are the desired colour, remove them with a slotted spoon from liquid and carefully dry. Rub each egg with a little oil, then polish with a paper towel. Keep the eggs in the refrigerator for up to a week.
You can play with the colours to get the shades you want. Although the colour may not be perfect or spots may appear, imperfections have their own charms. By creatively arranging these colourful eggs, you can add a special touch to the Easter table.
Note: To avoid staining, I recommend using a stainless steel pot or an enameled cast iron pot for dyeing the eggs with natural pigments. This way, you can enjoy the benefits of natural dyeing without having to worry about discoloring your cookware. Additionally, stainless steel and enameled cast iron pots are easy to clean and can be used for a variety of cooking purposes.
“Spring unlocks the flowers to paint the laughing soil.” — Bishop Reginald Heber