There are so many things to love about Easter weekend, but one of my favorite activities is dyeing eggs. They’re color you can eat! Mr. Magpie & I don’t have kids, but that doesn’t stop me from whipping up a couple dozen of these pretties every year.

After seeing so many gorgeous examples of naturally-dyed eggs on Pinterest, we decided to ditch the food coloring and experiment with the contents of our fridge.

The spotted grey-purple eggs were dyed in an overnight-bath of grape juice and vinegar. Vinegar is an acid and it reacts with the calcium shells, which produces a neat mottling effect.

To make the bluish-teal eggs, I filled a stock-pot halfway with water, added a cut-up head of red cabbage, and boiled the whole mess until the brew was nice and dark. (And stinky. Pee-ew cabbage.) Then I added a  few teaspoons of baking soda, cooled & strained the mix, and dunked the eggs overnight. I hear that adding vinegar instead of the baking soda makes a pretty pink-purple. Chemistry, FTW!

I also tried to dye eggs with tumeric & paprika, but the color didn’t really stick to the eggshells. In all cases, the overnight eggs + dye-baths were kept in the fridge, as we plan to eat these all week.

I just love how unique each egg becomes. How about you? Are you experimenting with natural dyes this weekend?

show hide 4 comments

April 9, 2012 - 2:37 pm

Donaville - These turned out beautiful! Loove the colors, though I can’t say I’ll try dyeing with cabbage for any future Easters ;)

March 26, 2014 - 1:51 pm

Awesome Album Art - Love this idea and will definitely try it with my family as Easter approaches.

March 26, 2014 - 2:14 pm

handvsmom - the eggs looks wonderful! I’m all about trying to avoid artificial coloring wherever I can. I’m going to try to dye boiled eggs after shelling them and de-yolking them. It would be fun to make devilled eggs with multi colored eggs. Let’s see how that turns out…

April 2, 2014 - 10:07 pm

Alina - Hey, great, healthy ideas! In my country my grandmother used to paint red Easter eggs using red onion peels. Guess she was boiling them to get the color out, I don’t know her recipe but I could ask her. Good luck :)

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