Natural Egg Dyes | Cary Downtown Farmers Market

Natural Egg Dyes

Chef Corner

Article by Mitch Samples


Good Tidings to you my social distancing peeps.  I hope you are well and accentuating on the positive in these interesting times we find ourselves in.  Spring is in the air and there are flowers everywhere, please remember to stop and smell them.  Enjoy the time you have in new and beautiful ways.

The Spring holidays are upon us and I was intending to write some wonderful holiday recipes for you to honor the season.  It then occurred to me that everyone’s pantries may be a little sparse and the opportunity to get out and shop a little low and it may be unfair to present things that can’t be done safely in our current situation.

For this reason, my plan is to re-run last years recipes of natural dyes.  They are good, some better than others.  I especially like the onion peel recipe.  These are good for dying cloth as well as eggs.  Give it them a go and have some fun.  Also, if you have recipes for dyes that I haven’t listed please send them to me, I want to find the best recipes out there and compile them for all of you to use.

On the topic of recipe sharing, last week I offered to help anyone with cooking technique, planning or ideas as we are all cooking more at home, sometimes with less on hand.  That offer still stands!  No charge to you.  If you would like some assistance in this area please reach out to me at with your questions.


Natural Egg Dye Recipes:

Chef’s Corner, CDFM

Red: Beets

1 qt cold water

2 cups shredded or diced beets


Orange/rust: Yellow Onion Skins

1 qt cold water

2 to 4 C yellow onion skins (your local supermarket will give this to you if you don’t have enough of your own)


Yellow: Turmeric

1 qt cold water

2 to 4 Tbs Turmeric


Green: Spinach and Parsley

3 C ice water

1 bunch spinach, blanched and shocked (see below)

1 bunch parsley, blanched and shocked


Blue: Blueberry

1 qt cold water

2 C blueberries


Violet: Red Cabbage

1 qt cold water

2 to 3 C red cabbage, chopped




For all colors except green

  • Place all ingredients in a sauce pan, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for at least an ½ hour.
  • Follow the following directions for each item.
    1. Beets: Strain into quart jar and cool for later use. Reserve beets to eat.
    2. Onion skins: Strain into quart jar and cool for later use. Discard skins
    3. Turmeric: Strain into quart jar and cool for later use. Save the turmeric paste to use in tea or a curry later (be careful this stuff stains everything.  Look at you pan, it’s yellow now.  Didn’t think that could happen, did you?)
    4. Blueberry: Puree the contents of the pan with a stick blender (preferred method), or puree in a blender-be careful it’s hot. Strain into quart jar and cool for later use.
    5. Red Cabbage: Strain into quart jar and cool for later use. Reserve Cabbage to eat.

For the Spinach

  • Blanche: Bring a pot of water to a boil. Drop in spinach and parsley, and boil for about 2 minutes.
  • Shock: Strain and immediately transfer spinach and parsley into an ice water bath.
  • Place spinach and parsley into blender with 3 Cups of the Ice water, and puree.
  • Strain into a qt jar and cool for later use. Save the puree to eat.  Not sure how yet, but that’s good stuff and has souffle or frittata written all over it.

To Dye Eggs: Add 1 T white vinegar per cup of natural dye and proceed as you normally would.


If you have any questions, please contact Mitch at  I am here for you.



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