Natural Dyes

Have fun with your family collecting materials to use for natural dying. The materials listed below are safe enough for coloring eggs. If you decide you want to experiment with other things from nature, take a hike and collect items such as leaves, nuts, bark and berries. But remember, never use experimental items when dying edible products, including egg shells!

  1. Place one cup of material (listed below) in a small pan with just enough water to cover.
  2. Bring to a boil and simmer for fifteen minutes. Remove from heat, strain and discard materials, cool liquid and then cover it tightly. Use within 48 hours.


  • Red -- cranberries, beets or red onion skins
  • Yellow -- dandelion petals
  • Gold -- yellow onion skins
  • Brown -- tea leaves (use only four opened tea bags to one cup water)
  • Green -- parsley, carrot tops or spinach
  • Blue -- blueberries
  • Rose -- tomato skins


If ordinary hand washing doesn't remove coloring stains from your fingers, dry thoroughly, then rub with olive oil and wipe with paper towels. This should remove most skin stains.

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