Sustainable Saturday - Coloring Easter Eggs Naturally!

Easter is only two weeks away and my children are ready to color their Easter eggs!  I've wanted to dye the eggs more naturally, but have yet to experiment with natural food coloring dyes. Here’s why: Many food colorings contain color additives such as Red No. 3 and Yellow No. 5, which, according to a 1983 study by the FDA, were found to cause tumors (Red No. 3) and hives (Yellow No. 5). 

Below you will find several resources for Natural Easter Egg Dyes.  I have highlighted in bold below the colors and ingredients we plan to use.  As for directions as to how to boil, incorporate the fruits, vegetables and spices, vinegar and soaking times, we will follow primarily what is outlined in the video below.  We will report back with our results!

Directions for all colors:
  • In a saucepan add 1 quart of water and vegetable/ fruit/ spices. 
  • Boil and cook for approximately 15 minutes.  
  • Allow to cool to room temperature and add 2 tbsp distilled white vinegar.  
  • Add hard boiled eggs to each color and allow to soak for 1-2 hours.  
Directions for brown (coffee):
  • Brew coffee
  • Allow to cool to room temperature and add 2 tbsp distilled white vinegar.  
  • Add hard boiled eggs to each color and allow to soak for overnight.
All of the ingredients and egg shells you use can be composted when you are done as they have been dyed with natural ingredients and are compost friendly!

Items To Dye With

Fresh or Frozen 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

Raspberry Tea Bags
Red Grape Juice
Juice from Pickled Beets


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

Fresh or Frozen Strawberries
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
Chart courtesy of

If you are looking for more specific, step-by-step instructions, check out the following for more detailed information:
If you are looking to simplify, but still want to color Easter eggs naturally, check out these Easter Egg Kits:

    Resources:, Food and - Natural Dye

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