Make Your Easter Eggs With Natural Coloring

Patti Cook, BA, MS, Ed.D., Culinary Grad and B & P Student (Photo Credit)

When people find out that I’m a chef, food blogger, culinary grad and currently in a baking and pastry program, they ask me all kinds of questions. Lately, the first question is: “What are you making for Easter?” First and foremost, I’m dyeing Easter eggs. For me, Easter and celebrating spring’s arrival are all about coloring eggs.

Although I used the commercial chemical egg-dyeing kits for years, the thought of chemicals on my food doesn’t work for me anymore. My desire to use healthier ingredients matches today’s culinary trend to be legitimately leery of artificial ingredients. And often there are better, more natural and healthier choices available. Easter eggs are the perfect example: natural dyes made from spices, flowers and vegetables can turn eggs gorgeous shades of yellow, violet and green.

From my kitchen seat, the celebration of spring in Vermont wouldn’t be complete without dyed Easter eggs. As with other recipes I make, this means I find ways to decrease the bad stuff like synthetic dyes and increase the good stuff like natural coloring to make my Easter complete and healthy.

Some secrets:

  • Be careful with the dyeing liquid… it really does dye things, so try to keep it off your countertops.
  • The dyed eggs will take on a “crackled” appearance if they sit for a day or two.
  • Candied violets are available at most large, well-stocked natural-foods stores and specialty shops.
  • If you plan to eat the eggs (which you should), store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.


Steps to Making your Easter Eggs Natural:


Coloring Ingredient (pick one per recipe)
          Purple: 5-10 candied violets
          Yellow: 1 tablespoon turmeric
          Green: 1 cup coarsely chopped spinach

2 cups boiling water
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
4 white eggs, hard-boiled


1. Place one of the coloring ingredients in a medium bowl. Pour boiling water over it and let steep for about 2 hours to extract the color. Strain the dyeing liquid into another medium bowl.

2. Stir vinegar into the dyeing liquid. Add the hard-boiled eggs and refrigerate for 24 hours.

3. Carefully remove the eggs from the dye (a slotted spoon works best) and let dry on a wire rack in the refrigerator. Refrigerate eggs for up to 5 days.

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