Dying Imprinted Easter Eggs with Onion Skins


Dying Easter Eggs HerbsEvery Easter, as long as I can remember, my Grandma dyed the prettiest leaf and floral imprinted Easter eggs! They were so natural and lovely, but produced with nothing more than an easily concocted natural dyestock and little bits of flora. We lost my Grandma last year and for the first time, Jaydin and I recreated her dye with spanish onion skins, water and a few tablespoons of vinegar. We also purchased a few pair of cheap panty hose and elastic hair bands. Jaydin went on a walk and came back with some leaves and flower petals for our imprints – we also used some herbs in the refrigerator.

Onion Skins to DyeWe first skinned about 10 spanish onions and placed the skins into a medium sauce pan along with about 4.5 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar. We covered our pot and simmered on medium low for about 30 minutes. Although I’ve seen the results before when my grandma made them, it shocked me at what a vibrant dark reddish brown the onion skins produced.

Dying Easter Eggs with Natural Dyes

We placed our leaf and/or flower petals onto the raw eggs and wrapped them tightly in a small piece of nylon securing both ends with elastic pony tails. You can also cut the nylon pieces a little longer and secure the two ends by tieing them together in the back of the egg.

Using Pantyhose to dye Easter eggs

We placed all of our eggs into the dye pot and hard boiled them by bringing the pot to a very light simmer on medium heat and lowering the temperature to low then covering them for about 12 minutes. We let our eggs sit in the dye pot until they were cool enough to handle. You can then put them in a glass bowl or mason jar and place them into the refrigerator until they are as dark as you’d like.

Leaf and Flower Imprinted Dyed Easter Eggs

We removed them to reveal our pretty natural looking eggs. We even loved the light spiral effect that the nylons gave them. Closer to Easter we will try again with some black beans which should produce a beautiful vibrant blue color. I may have gotten a little ahead of myself in the joy of recreating this lovely springtime memory.

Natural Dyed Easter Eggs





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  1. Posted March 23, 2012 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    This is a wonderful tradition.
    Simply works of art.

  2. Posted March 23, 2012 at 5:59 pm | Permalink


  3. Posted March 24, 2012 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    They look beautiful! I would love for you to link up and share:


  4. Posted March 26, 2012 at 5:20 am | Permalink

    these are stunning. I guess I’ll be making onion soup to get all those skins!

    • Carli
      Posted March 26, 2012 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      That’s exactly what I did, Melissa! I made a delicious french onion soup from The Pioneer Woman’s blog. Highly recommend it!

  5. Rista1313
    Posted March 30, 2012 at 9:53 am | Permalink

    My Grandma use to make the onion skin eggs for Easter, but she always told me they were “Polish easter eggs” and it wasn’t until I was in my 30’s that she told me they were made with onion skins.

    I always thought she cheated and bought brown chicken eggs at the store and boiled them!

  6. Posted April 5, 2012 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    I *ADORE* this!!

    My children and I were in the middle of preparing natural dyes for our Easter eggs, when a link to this popped in from Sprouts on Facebook. We quickly rounded up the rest of the supplies to enable us to imprint about half of them. In addition to onion skins, we used turmeric, purple cabbage leaves, spinach, and hibiscus flowers. Every color has at least one egg with the imprint on it.

    They’re still soaking… I can’t wait to see how they turn out!

    Thank you for the brilliant and beautiful idea!

    • Carli
      Posted April 5, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      Wow, Karen! I wish I could peek into your kitchen right now! Please post a picture when you are done (either here or on our Facebook page). With all of those colors, that is bound to be gorgeous!

    • Carli
      Posted April 5, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      Oh Karen, judging from your blog, I think we are neighbors! I’m in Glendale! ;-D

      • Posted April 6, 2012 at 9:12 am | Permalink

        We are neighbors!! I’m in far-north Peoria.

        Not great photography, as I snapped these with my phone. :) The onion, red cabbage, and turmeric were the most successful. Hibiscus made the eggs purpley-grey, and spinach turned the eggs brown.

        • Posted April 6, 2012 at 9:13 am | Permalink

          Crud! Pics didn’t work. I’ll find your FB page & share them there.

          • Carli
            Posted April 6, 2012 at 10:14 am | Permalink

            Karen, I commented on your photo on the Facebook page but in case you don’t see it, they are absolutely gorgeous! I am in love with the grey ones and will try my hand at those tomorrow! Thanks so much for sharing!

  7. Joyce
    Posted April 5, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    I do the same eggs every year and they are always a great success. I learned from my mother back home in Lebanon. She liked using natural dye which makes the eggs much healthier to eat even if they cracked during cooking.

    • Carli
      Posted April 5, 2012 at 3:00 pm | Permalink

      Hi Joyce, that’s probably where my grandma got it from. My grandpa was Lebanese. ;-)

      • Joyce
        Posted April 9, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

        What a small world.

  8. dennis marrero
    Posted April 16, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

    this Good Friday tradition has been in our family for many generations here in french south louisiana. i’m 54, and can remember when my grandmother switched from cheese cloth to nylon stockings. i was shocked to see this when i saw a link to here from facebook. i’ll try to post some pic’s.

    • Carli
      Posted April 16, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

      That is neat, Dennis! I’d love to see pictures!

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