Dyeing Eggs with Plants | Kittenhood

How to dye eggs naturally

How to dye eggs naturally | Kittenhood

This year I decided to opt for natural dyes on my Easter eggs. And there are many good reasons to do that, too! First of all, it’s natural, so you don’t have to worry about ingesting any chemicals by chance. Secondly, it’s cheap: you use parts of the plant you would normally throw out (pits, leaves etc.). And above all, dyeing naturally is fun. The colors are nice and tame, and you never know for sure what you’re gonna get. I’ve tried a few things and not all of them had great results. Avocado pits, for example, were supposed to create a beautiful shade of pink, but they didn’t create any color at all. In a similar way, blueberries didn’t make the dark blue I was expecting, but an ugly gray not even worth mentioning. However, I got a nice gradient of colors from a couple of plants: 

Naturally dyed eggs | Kittenhood

What you need: 

  • hard-boiled eggs (white)
  • stainless steel pot 
  • white onion leaves for orange dye 
  • curry powder for yellow dye
  • white vinegar 
  • containers for dyeing 
  • (optional) cooking oil for polish

Natural Dye for Eggs | Kittenhood

For the orange dye, the proportion is one handful of onion leaves to one cup of water and 1 tsp vinegar. Bring to a boil in a covered stainless steel pot, then allow to simmer for a little bit. The water should be brown-orange in color. Strain the leaves. Place your hard boiled eggs in one or more containers and pour the dye over them. The color will start adhering very quickly, and it will become more intense in time. The darkest of my eggs was dyed for 24 hours while the lightest for 1 hour. When the dye cools, you can move the container with the eggs to the fridge, do the eggs don’t spoil if you decide to leave them for longer. 

Use Plants to Dye Easter Eggs | Kittenhood

For the yellow dye, you would normally use turmeric powder. Since I didn’t have that in the house, I decided to use curry, which also contains turmeric – and it worked just fine. The proportion here is 1 tbsp curry powder to 1 cup water and 1 tbsp vinegar. Again, bring to a boil in a stainless steel pot and simmer a little before pouring over the hard boiled eggs. If the dye doesn’t cover them completely, don’t worry – you can move the eggs around with a spoon, which will create rather pleasant lines and designs. Straining curry powder can be a little difficult so I skipped this step, which resulted in the color adhering differently, and cute little speckles on the egg. Again, you can leave the eggs in the dye anywhere between an hour and a day, making sure to transfer them to the fridge after the dye is cooled. 

You can polish your eggs with a little cooking oil and a paper towel, but I left mine matte. That’s it! Do you think you’ll dive into natural egg dyeing this Easter? 

Yellow & brown Easter eggs | KittenhoodDyeing Eggs with Plants | Kittenhood

 

  • Pat Schwab

    Where did you get these adorable egg cups? Thanks, Pat S

    • Hey Pat, these are East Germany era egg cups, I found then at a local shop in Berlin. And I’ve seen some on Etsy, too!

      • Pat Schwab

        They are adorable and I love the irony. Chicken or the egg.

  • I’ve been wanting to try red cabbage to dye eggs. Supposedly the eggs will turn bright blue!

    • I heard that too! I couldn’t find red cabbage at the store and I just let it go for now 🙂 Anyway, the method should be the same as for the onion leaves.