Easter is just a few short weeks away and you can get a jumpstart on this spring holiday of renewal by rethinking your traditional method for coloring Easter eggs. Using nature’s own pretty hues from fruits, vegetables and spices, you can create a beautiful bounty of egg-ceptional eggs – perfect for all your decorating, hiding and snacking needs.
The Cool Way to Dye Eggs
Generally speaking, there are two methods used when dyeing eggs: cold dipping and hot boiling. Cold dipping produces subtler, more translucent shades and is usually the preferred method for using multiple colors on the same egg. Hot boiling produces much more intense shades, but these eggs are for decoration only, not eating. We prefer being able to eat our delicious creations after they’ve made their beautiful Easter Sunday debut, so we recommend cold dipping.
Try our recipe for Naturally Dyed Eggs using turmeric, blueberries and beets!
2 cups roughly chopped, raw beets (for pink/red), OR
2 cups blueberries, crushed (for blue/purple), OR
1 teaspoon ground turmeric (for yellow/gold)
1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
Put your choice of coloring ingredient (beets, blueberries or turmeric) into a small pot with 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve, discarding any solids, and then stir in vinegar. Set aside to let cool until warm or room temperature.
To color eggs, submerge in dye, turning often for even coating, until desired color is reached. For more colors, dye eggs first in one color, then wipe dry and dye in a second color.
Want even more variety? We recommend trying out some of these options for creating every color of the rainbow. Be sure your work area is well covered before you start experimenting, as this project will inevitably be a bit messy!
- Yellow - Lemon or orange peels, carrots, celery seed
- Orange - Paprika, cumin, chili powder, yellow onion skins
- Red/Pink - Cranberries, raspberries, radishes
- Purple - Hibiscus tea
- Blue/Lavender - Red cabbage, blackberries, purple or red grape juice
- Green - Spinach leaves
- Brown/Beige - Coffee, tea, walnuts
The Incredible Edible Easter Eggs
If you're anything like us, then you not only love the beauty of Easter eggs, but the deliciousness that lies within! Here are a few tips on how to enjoy these holiday treats safe for consumption:
- Keep uncooked eggs in the refrigerator until absolutely necessary in the preparation process.
- Eggs with visible cracks after boiling and/or dyeing may be eaten, but should be kept in the refrigerator and not used in an egg hunt or for decoration.
- Eggs may have fine cracks you're not able to see, it's always a good idea to hide them in places protected from dirt and other sources of bacteria.
- Only keep cooked eggs you intend on eating out of the refrigerator for a maximum of two hours. (That includes hiding and hunting! Any longer than that and the eggs are no longer safe to consume.)
- All eggs should be eaten within one week, so try not to dye any more than you can manage.
Luckily we have some tasty suggestions for those other eggs you’ve got laying around:
If eating plain, boiled eggs seems a little boring, check out these ways to spruce them up, from simple spicing to whole dishes!
- Make it a simple snack with salt, pepper and dill.
- Slice them over salad for a light meal.
- Bake them into the middle of your next meatloaf for a tasty surprise!
- Make a classic favorite with a fresh twist: Watercress and Green Onion Deviled Eggs
- Bring a unique picnic side to your next gathering: Russian Potato Salad
We hope these tips and suggestions help make your Easter extra egg-ceptional this year! Got a great suggestion for a natural Easter egg dye or a favorite recipe for your hard-boiled leftovers? We’d love to hear all about it!
Visit our spring gatherings site for more expert tips on what to cook and how to cook it, being the host- or host-ess with the most-est and fun ideas for cooking with kids.
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