Dying Easter eggs with food coloring is easy and makes bright beautiful eggs. No need to run out and get an expensive store-bought egg-dying kit! With a few ingredients, most of them already in your kitchen, you probably have all you need for coloring Easter eggs.
For more decorating ideas beyond the dye, check out this post on creative ways to decorate Easter eggs. Don’t forget to EGG your neighbor. Your kids will love this activity! They might also like these free Easter coloring pages.
Supplies for Dying Easter Eggs
- Food Coloring
- White Vinegar
- Hard Boiled Eggs (learn how to make the perfect hard boiled eggs with these tips)
- Bowls or large cups
- Whisk (optional)
- Paper towels
How to dye Easter eggs step by step
- Place 1/2 cup hot tap water in containers – these can be bowls or cups that are deep enough to completely submerge an egg.
- Place 20 drops of food coloring per 1/2 cup water (I used 40 drops and 1 cup to accommodate the size of my glasses).
- Mix well.
- Add in 1 tablespoon white vinegar and stir.
- To create new colors follow the guide on the back of the box. Most liquid food coloring boxes found at the grocery store will have a handy color mixing guide on the back of the box.
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- Warning: food coloring is safe but will stain clothing or tabletops. You should have paper towels handy and you may want to protect surfaces with old newspaper or a drop-cloth.
- The longer you leave the eggs in the food coloring mixture, the brighter the eggs. Start with a few minutes and then go from there. A great experiment for kids!
- You can dye brown eggs! They come out looking very pretty, sometimes a little darker and more naturally speckled than the white eggs.
- Boiled eggs can be dyed warm or cold. We prefer to let them cool for safety.
- A whisk is super handy for dipping the eggs.
Coloring Easter Eggs Trick
Have you ever tried putting your eggs inside a whisk? This simple idea makes egg coloring a lot easier for kids and toddlers! Egg stays put and is easy to retrieve!
Just place the egg inside the whisk and dip inside the desired color. No more mess! Also, to prevent stains, you might have children wear old clothes or protective clothing and cover the table. If the weather is nice, we have a lot of success dying eggs outside.
Can I use regular food coloring for dyed Easter eggs?
Can you use plain old food coloring and get a vibrant color? Yes, the regular food coloring in the baking aisle is the kind of dye we use for our Easter eggs!
Some people mix the dye into boiling water or very hot water. Feel free to try that if you don’t have small children, but for us the trick is really leaving the eggs in the solution long enough, at least 15 minutes for saturated colors.
Dying eggs with gel food coloring
Get especially vivid results from the gel paste dyes you can find at craft stores. You might find them in the store near baking pans, rather than in the baking and spices aisle.
Learn how to dye hollow shells after blowing out the eggs! This is a great alternative for decorative egg displays you want to keep longer, or when your family just isn’t that crazy about boiled eggs.
The gel food coloring is great because you only need a small amount for really saturated color. You can get a similar effect with regular food coloring, with the drops-to-water ratio listed above.
Can you dye eggs without vinegar?
What if you get everything ready, and you find you’re all out of white vinegar? The purpose of adding vinegar to the water and dye is to help the dye bond to the eggshell. Without it, you can still dye eggs, but the color won’t be as vibrant.
Instead of vinegar, you can substitute lemon or lime juice in the same proportions as listed above. You can also use vitamin C powder or crush up a vitamin C tablet and stir it into the water and dye solution.
Tie-dye Easter eggs
There are so many ways to decorate Easter eggs with just a few supplies! How about some groovy tie-dyed eggs?
To create a tie-dye effect, try dripping food coloring on a paper towel, then spraying with your water and vinegar solution until it starts to spread. Then just wrap the paper towel around a boiled egg, secure with some rubber bands, and let it sit for about a minute.
Now unwrap and check out all the cool colors. This is a kid favorite. Far out!