Posted on Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 at 7:00 am
There are plenty of ways to dye Easter eggs. The techniques and ingredients you choose to dye Easter eggs can be based on convenience, cost, or health and safety concerns. It’s a good idea to be informed of the positives and negatives involved with different kinds of Easter egg dye.
One of the most common ways to dye Easter eggs is to use the package that comes from the grocery store. PAAS has been selling tablets of dye that is intended to be used to color hard boiled eggs for more than 135 years.
The ingredients in PAAS dye are: Sodium bicarbonate, maltodextrin, FD&C Yellow #5, FD&C Blue #2, cellulose gum, FD&C Red #40, FD&C Yellow #6, FD&C Blue #1, FD&C Red #3, magnesium stearate, zinc stearate, sodium lauryl sulfate, and silicon dioxide.
Sodium bicarbonate is an antacid. Maltodextrin is a sweetener made from corn starch. The PAAS package says it “Confirms to ASTM D-4236”. All art supplies that are sold in the United States must bear that phrase to confirm that they have been properly labeled for chronic health hazards.
The best thing about using PAAS tablets to dye Easter eggs is that the process can be done rather quickly and easily. Some people, however, will not feel comfortable using a product that contains certain dyes.
Another option is to use Kool-Aid. Kraft suggests you use the powdered Kool-Aid. Mix the powder into a cup of water. Put the hard boiled egg into the mixture and let it soak. The process is similar to how eggs are dyed with PAAS tablets.
The ingredients in Kool-Aid can vary depending on which flavor is selected. The ingredients in Kool-Aid Twists Berry Blue Unsweetened powder are: citric acid, calcium phosphate, maltodextrin, ascorbic acid (another phrase for vitamin C), artificial and natural flavor, Blue 1, and tocopherol (which is a preservative).
It is also possible to use foods from your kitchen to dye Easter eggs. This technique takes longer to do than the other ones. It also results in pastel or subtle colors on the eggs.
You will need to shred a vegetable and boil it in order to make the dye. The eggs will need to sit for much longer in the dye than you may expect. Here’s a quick list of potential colors:
Purple cabbage – blue
Red onion skins – lavender
Yellow onion skins – orange
Beets – pink
Blueberries – bluish-grey
Carrots – rich yellow
Orange peels – light yellow
Strong brewed coffee – brown
Grape juice – lavender