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Frugal Easter Eggs – No Kit Needed

April 6th, 2009 · 9 Comments

eggsDid you know that you can die Easter eggs without the kit?  For years I paid umpteen dollars for Easter egg kits for my kids to die Easter eggs.  Little did I know that you can make custom colors simply using food coloring.  Not only can you customize your colors but you can make tie dye eggs, marbleized eggs, painted eggs and more.

To hard cook your eggs, put eggs in a single layer in the bottom of a pan.  Fill pan with cold water until it is 1 inch over the eggs.  Bring to a boil. As soon as it starts to boil, remove from heat and let them sit in hot water for 15 minutes.

Cool the eggs quickly by running under cold water or dropping gently into ice water.

When completely cool, they are ready to dye.

Egg Dye Recipe

1/2 cup boiling water

1 tsp vinegar

10-20 drops food coloring

Combine all ingredients in a cup.  Dip eggs into dye until they reach the desired color.  Dry completely.

Painted Eggs

Combine 20 drops of food color and 1/2 tsp of vinegar. Use paintbrush or cotton swab to paint the eggs.  You can make geometric designs, religious designs or just let your imagination go wild!

Designer Eggs

Use stickers, rubber bands, crayons, etc and place on eggs.  Dye as normal and then remove the stickers, bands, etc.

Tie Dye Eggs

Put eggs in a colander. Splash eggs with vinegar and then drop 1 food coloring onto them.  Shake gently to distribute the color and then repeat with different colors.

Marbleized Eggs.

Add 1/4 cup boiling water, 1 teaspoon vinegar, 1/8 teaspoon oil and 4 to 8 drops food color to a shallow bowl. Gently roll egg in the mixture for 30 seconds, or until the egg is the desired shade.  Transfer the egg to a second color mixture, and repeat the process. Allow the egg to dry completely. Wipe away excess oil with a paper towel.

Custom Colors

  • Jade – 17 drops green & 3 drops blue
  • Turquoise – 5 drops blue & 2 drops green
  • Orange Sunset – 17 drops yellow & 3 drops red
  • Raspberry – 14 drops red & 6 drops blue

These color combinations were picked at McCormicks Perfect Color picker.  They have more designer colors as well. It will also give you the combinations for icing, cake, etc.

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9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Earl S. Wynn // Apr 6, 2009 at 8:13 pm

    That is just plain awesome! My little sister loves easter egg hunts, so I’m definitely going to be using this setup this Easter! Thanks for sharing!

  • 2 VegBoxClara // Apr 7, 2009 at 1:58 am

    Lovely post!

    Tell me, is there any special egg-y technical reason why these dye tips wouldn’t work with blown eggs instead of hard boiled ones?

  • 3 Cindy // Apr 7, 2009 at 2:53 am

    Clara, I don’t know of any reason why they wouldn’t work with blown eggs.

    Earl, it looks like I will be dying eggs for the grandkids so I will probably be dying a few as well.

  • 4 Rosie Morison // Apr 7, 2009 at 4:43 am

    Loved these ideas!! I remember when I was little we used to boil the eggs with red onion skins to give them a nice reddy-brown colour! They looked great with silver or gold pens/paints to decorate!!

  • 5 liz // Apr 8, 2009 at 3:07 pm

    Wonderful information and ideas!

  • 6 Carole // Apr 9, 2009 at 6:01 am

    Thanks for the recipe just in time for Easter!

  • 7 Tara @ Feels like home // Apr 11, 2009 at 4:27 pm

    Thank you! These are awesome tips!

    We already colored our eggs for this year (using a kit) but I will come back to this article next year. :)

  • 8 Michelle // Apr 15, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    Your colors came out beautifully! This year, I tried using some different foods I had in my kitchen to make some dyes. It was fun (and a little smelly), but our colors were quite muted. I think I added too much liquid relative to the coloring agents. I’ll try again next year – and maybe we will do some like yours too!

    Here is the post that I wrote about my experience dyeing eggs:

    I am enjoying your site!

  • 9 Things to Write Home About - 4/19/09 | Feels Like Home // Apr 19, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    […] Cindy at The Small Homestead posted frugal ways to dye eggs […]

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