April 13, 2014

Rainbow Deviled Eggs (colored with homemade food dye!)

Spring has finally sprung! Easter is coming. So I made these little celebratory morsels of delish the other day.



They're so fun to make, it's almost embarrassing. And while it must be said that for optimal entertainment, these should be made with your friends who are younger than 12, if you can't round up any kids for this one, don't worry, you will feel your own inner kid jumping for joy when you pull those brightly-colored eggs out of your own easy homemade dyes.
















The dyes are made using foods that you'll probably have readily on hand in your kitchen: beets, red cabbage, and turmeric. Of course, this is only scratching the surface of the vast possibility of colors you can create from common foods (onion skins, hibiscus tea, black tea are just some of the other ones to try), but I wanted to keep it to three colors and relatively simple. Read how to make these easy dyes below. But first, the chickens deserve some thanks and acknowledgement.



This recipe happened because there's been an overflow of eggs around the farm lately and I've been making every egg dish I can think of. We've been "chicken-sitting" for friends, so the chicken population suddenly doubled.



Not to mention this is the time of year when chickens suddenly go into marathon egg-laying mode.






One thing to keep in mind if you have access to farm-fresh eggs is that fresh-laid eggs don't peel very easily, so when making hard-boiled eggs, it's best to use eggs that are at least a few days old. (* flash update: Or as a reader pointed out in the comments below (thank you Carol!!), to hard boil day-fresh eggs that peel easily, simply STEAM them using a basket steamer, for 12 to 13 minutes, then immediately plunge in ice water to cool and peel under running water while they are still warm).




So here's how I went about making these deviled eggs. First… the dyes. 

For the pink dye: 
Combine 2 cups of water and 1 cup chopped beets. Boil for about 20 to 30 minutes. 
Strain the solids out. Add 1 Tbsp vinegar and 1 tsp salt and stir.








For the blue dye: 
Combine 2 cups of water and 2 cups chopped red cabbage. Boil for about 20 to 30 minutes. 
Strain the solids out. Add 1 Tbsp vinegar and 1 tsp salt. To turn the mixture blue, add 3/4 tsp. baking soda and stir.

For the yellow dye: 
Combine 2 cups of water and 1 Tbsp turmeric. Boil for about 20 to 30 minutes. 
Strain the solids out. Add 1 Tbsp vinegar and 1 tsp salt and stir.


To dye the eggs, you will first need to hard-boil them and peel them. You then plop them in the dyes and let the magic begin. The longer you leave them in, the brighter the colors. I left mine in for about one hour and this is how they turned out. 





And this is what one of my cutting boards looked like once I was done with this recipe.




Once your eggs are dyed to your liking, you can go ahead and make the deviled eggs as you normally would. Use your own favourite deviled egg recipe, or skip the mayonnaise and try my easy Greek yoghurt recipe on PBS Food(I promise these are so good you won't even miss the mayo!) 

Happy Easter!








41 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Pam!! Wish we could snack on these together :-)

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  2. These are awesome! So bright and fun, thanks for sharing :)

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    1. Thanks so much Billie, they're really fun indeed :-)

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  3. This is awesome! I never thought red cabbage would make such a bright blue color. Genius!

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    1. Yes, I was surprised too, it's kind of magic when you put the baking soda in, the purple shifts to blue instantly, fun to see!

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  4. Fantastic, thank you so much for sharing.

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  5. Can you taste the ingredients used in the dye in the finished deviled eggs? I'm just wondering as I'm not a huge fan of any of those tastes (especially beets!).

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    1. Good question! No, you can't really taste the flavours, perhaps a faint hint of the vinegar and the turmeric, but barely, you'd have to have a very sensitive palate. Let me know what you think if you do end up trying them :-)

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  6. These look amazing! A great treat for easter, but would impress at any party.

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  7. Awe, so cute. I love it. I want to to try the pink, yellow and blue and when I'm done mix them together to see if I can get green and purple. I love deviled eggs and chickens!!

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  8. Do you have any recipes for the other colors? I've never done homemade dyes, but I like the idea.

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    1. Hi Elizabeth, yes, page 2 of this article has some other color recipes, they are geared for whole eggs with their shells on but they will work just as well for peeled hard-boiled eggs. Let me know how they work out for you! :-) http://www.organicgardening.com/living/how-make-natural-easter-egg-dye?page=0,1

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  9. Try cracking the shells all over the egg, then dye them BEFORE peeling. Really cool effect. :D

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  10. I'm definitely going to try these~if I omit the baking soda in the cabbage dye, will the eggs be more purple?

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    1. Yes exactly, they'll be purple, you can also play with the exact amount of baking soda to get varying shades of purple / blue.

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  11. Can these dye recipes be used for dying the shell also?

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  12. These are great and thanks for the homemade dye tips! To hardboil even the freshest of eggs, don't boil them at all - STEAM them! Use a basket steamer, and get about an inch of water to boiling, put your eggs in and steam for about 12-13 minutes. Immediately plunge into ice water to cool and peel under running water while they are still just warm. It is amazing - I have chickens and had just about given up on hard-cooked eggs until I tried this method!

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    1. Hi Carol, this is brilliant! Thank you for sharing, I will definitely be trying this!!!

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  13. You're awesome. Thanks for sharing.

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  14. Do the dyes work well on un-peeled eggs. .. like Easter eggs?

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    1. Hi Sarah, yes it does… though white eggs take the colour better than brown eggs

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  15. Is the salt necessary or just for flavoring?

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    1. HI Lisa, I don't think the salt is absolutely necessary, but I've read that it helps aids in the dyeing process by helping to fix the dye onto the surface of the egg… but it's by no means necessary :-)

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  16. Hmm! Very cool. Wonder if you can make pickled eggs, using the color tweaks above? Beets for purple, add baking soda to beets for blue, skip beets and add turmeric for yellow, to the basic pickling recipe. (1 cup beet juice/or water, 1 cup cider vinegar, 1 cup sugar, salt to taste, heat to blend, cool, then marinate peeled eggs, the longer the better, 3-4 days. Keeps for 2 weeks.)

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    1. Sounds wonderful, I love pickled eggs! I've heard you can also crack open a jar of pickled beets and simply use the juice from that.

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  17. Oops! That pickling recipe for a half dozen eggs. Better for making small batches of different colors.

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  18. Do you drop eggs in cold or hot dye

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  19. Hi, This is wonderful. We are struggling a bit with getting the pink to catch on. Any tips?

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    1. Try soaking the eggs for a bit longer longer, or perhaps add one or two more chopped beets and boil for another 5 minutes to deepen the colour, then try again… hope it works well for you!

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  20. Will this work with the shell on? Love your eggs, they're beautiful!

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    1. Ahh just saw the reply above, I missed it the first time I scrolled through! Sorry! :)

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  21. This turned out perfectly! And there was even a bit of excitement when we created a volcano putting the baking soda into the cabbage dye. Perhaps you can't do it immediately after the vinegar!? Anyway, thanks so much for the post! This is going to become a family tradition.

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  22. These are so cheery and I love that they're all natural.

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  23. Loved the dyed eggs for Easter so neat.

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  24. I was thinking these would be especially cool if you molded the eggs into shapes first - peeled & molded while still warm then dyed. I recently bought egg molds in a variety of shapes - duck, rabbit, bear, heart, star, car & fish. Wouldn't a yellow, duck shaped egg be awesome? I also saw an idea for penguins which I'd love to try. Any ideas for getting a black colored egg? Even a really, really dark blue or purple would work. Thanks

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