Dying Easter eggs is a great activity to share with the kids, just prepare ahead to prevent messes. You don’t have to buy the special egg dye kits in the supermarket, instead use the food colorings that you already have in your kitchen cupboard or try some of these natural methods to dye eggs.
How to Dye Eggs
Protect All Surfaces
Cover your table with plastic, then add another layer of newspaper. Wear old clothes that you don’t mind getting dyed and think about wearing gloves if you don’t want multi-colored hands.
- Hard Boiled Eggs
- Plastic Table Cloth
- Bowls or Cups
- Food Coloring or natural coloring materials
- Paper Towels
- Colander or Egg Tray
How to Dye With Food Dye
- Add 1 teaspoon of vinegar to 1 cup of boiling water. Add food coloring by the drop until the water is a deep shade of the desired color. You want the colors strong, they will be lighter on the egg
- Dip the hard-boiled eggs into the coloring with a spoon and let them soak. The color darkens as the egg soaks. Remove the egg when the color is your desired shade. Place them on paper towels to dry.
- Create patterns on the eggs before dying by wrapping them with rubber bands or string, or drawing on them with wax crayons. You can create multi-colored eggs by dipping eggs in several colors, soaking only part of the egg at each time.
Dying Eggs with Natural Foods
- You can also use the natural colors found in foods to color eggs. Simmer the colored plant or vegetable in water until the water is colored.
- Strain the water and add 2 to 3 teaspoons of white vinegar for each cup of colored juice.
- Soak the eggs as before. Some colors may require long soaking times, so keep them in the refrigerator while soaking.
Try these colors:
- Red or Pink: Beet juice, cranberry juice, cherry juice, raspberry juice and pomegranate juice.
- Yellow or Gold: Tumeric
- Orange: Carrots or paprika
- Green: Spinach
- You can also use herbal teas and flowers. Experiment and have fun.
Creating Natural Patterns
Interesting patterns can also be created by applying leaves or flowers directly to the egg before boiling. Start with raw eggs and place the leaves directly against the egg. Hold them in position with a layer of cheese cloth tied tightly around the egg. Boil them for 10 to 12 minutes. Drain the eggs and allow them to cool. Remove the cheesecloth and leaves to reveal your natural patterned eggs.
- Fill a small bowl or cup half full with white vinegar. Dip hard-boiled eggs into the vinegar, turning it to coat the egg.
- Place the colander or egg carton on several layers of newspaper to absorb spills.
- Drop food coloring onto the egg, letting the colors run together as desired. For best results, start with lighter colors.
- Use a toothpick or small brush to move the color around on the egg as desired. Kids might enjoy blowing the drops of color around with a well-aimed straw. You don’t have to cover the entire egg, leave a little white space.
- Let each color set for a minute before adding the next color, then let the eggs dry before handling them. You can rinse off extra color or blot it off with a paper towel.
- Gently rinse the excess dye off of the eggs and place them on a paper towel to air dry.
This macaroni salad ring recipe is an old-fashioned molded salad.
1 package elbow macaroni
2 Tablespoons salad oil
2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
½ teaspoon seasoned salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon grated white onion
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
¼ cup grated carrot
1 cup mayonnaise or salad dressing
1 cup celery, chopped or sliced thin
1 pimento, chopped (optional)
Cook macaroni in boiling salted water according to package directions until tender Drain and put into a large bowl.
Mix salad oil, vinegar, seasoned salt and macaroni. Toss to coat well, then add remaining ingredients and mix well.
Spoon into a 5 cup ring mold, pack down well with back of spoon.
Cover and chill at least 2 hours.
Unmold onto platter and fill center with fresh vegetable relish or salad greens if desired. Serves 6 to 8.
Deviled Eggs are making a comeback, and it’s about time!
Now that the nutritionists are allowing that perhaps eggs are a good food after all, we are seeing deviled eggs making a comeback. This old time favorite southern treat is a perfect appetizer or side relish for your next party. Each egg half is one to two bites of savory finger food that is universally well liked and easy to make.
Deviled eggs are an excellent way to use up the older eggs before they reach their expiration date. A fresh egg will not peel well when boiled, but an older egg- one that has been in the refrigerator for a few days will peel perfectly under cold running water.
Cover the eggs with cold water and bring to a boil. When the boiling point is reached, turn the heat down to medium and simmer for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to cool. You can hasten the cooling process by cracking the shells and running cold water over the eggs. Remove the shells under cold running water, rinse off any bits of shell or membrane that may cling to the egg and place on a paper towel to dry.
Traditionally, deviled eggs have been cut lengthwise into two halves, but consider cutting across the egg instead. Trim a thin slice from the end as needed so that it will sit upright without slithering around the dish making a small cup to hold the salad mixture.
Remove the yolks, then mix with other savory ingredients and mayonnaise or butter to moisten, and put back into the egg shells. It is convenient to mix all the ingredients in a plastic bag, then snip off the end of the bag and squirt the egg back into the shells. You can use a pastry tip to achieve a fancy presentation. Garnish with paprika, chopped parsley, or pimento cutouts.
In addition to the conventional egg and pickle mixture, consider stuffing your eggs with chicken, tuna, shrimp, or lobster salad for a new taste sensation and presentation. Here are a few recipes to get you started:
Traditional Southern Deviled Eggs
6 hard boiled eggs
1- 2 teaspoons mustard to taste
3 Tablespoons chopped dill or sweet pickle (I also like chopped olives)
1 teaspoon pickle juice
1/4 cup mayonnaise (or more if needed)
salt and pepper to taste
dash of paprika for garnish
Remove the yolks, mash, and mix with the other ingredients. Use only as much mayonnaise to make a moist and creamy yolk mixture. Stuff the yolk and garnish with a sprinkle of paprika. Chill and serve cold. The pickles can also be replaced with finely chopped green olives omitting the pickle juice.
Avocado Egg Salad
8 hard boiled eggs
1 small avocado
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon mustard (optional)
Hard boil the eggs. Halve eggs, remove and mash the yolk. Mash the avocado pulp through a sieve that has been rubbed with garlic. Mix lemon juice into the pulp to prevent browning and add to the egg yolks with the mustard if using. Mix well and use a piping bag to stuff into egg shells.
Chicken Salad Stuffed Eggs
8 hard boiled eggs
1 cup cooked chicken, finely chopped
¼ cup finely chopped celery
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 to ½ cup mayonnaise or miracle whip
pecan halves or slivered almonds for garnish
Remove the yolks from the egg cups and mash. Add the chicken, celery, salt and pepper and just enough mayonnaise to moisten and bind. Stuff into egg cups and garnish with a pecan half or slivered almonds.
6 hard boiled eggs
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped tarragon leaves
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped capers
1 teaspoon anchovy paste
1 teaspoon French mustard
1 ounce butter, softened
1 ounce caviar
- Mix tarragon and capers with mayonnaise. Set aside.
- Cut hardboiled eggs lengthwise and remove yolks.
- Press yolks through a sieve. Add anchovy paste, mustard and softened butter.
- Fill egg whites with mixture. Top with a dollop of the mayonnaise, then sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon of caviar on top. Serve very cold.