Easter Egg Coloring

Updated on March 21, 2016
T.R. asks from Altamonte Springs, FL
17 answers

I remember coloring real eggs when I was little, so I did that with DD a couple of times, then I read not to leave the eggs out for more than 2 hours....I put them in the fridge then the condensation made the coloring come off and they were yucky to handle. That was three years ago and I haven't done them again, but we want to color eggs! Do you color real eggs? How do you store them so they are still Ok to eat and the color doesn't get messed up?

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So What Happened?

Ahh.. maybe they weren't totally dry... We will try again! Thanks for all the great responses!
* I do remember when little that our hard boiled Easter eggs were the eggs we hunted, and then kept on the counter for a day or more and no one EVER got sick. Love the simpler times...damn internet! Haha...

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answers from San Francisco on

We always colored real eggs too, usually tried different processes (kits) each year and kept them in a basket on the counter for a few days. But for us it was an art project, not food, we never ate them.
Maybe that seems wasteful but I always bought the cheapest, most generic eggs so it's not like it cost much.
For the egg hunt I filled plastic eggs with candies, stickers, etc. and there was always a "golden" egg with a fancier prize or treat.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

We color them every year. Did you wait until the color was completely dry before you put them in the fridge? We always color, let them dry completely, then put them in the fridge, and never had a big problem with the color coming off.

4 moms found this helpful

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answers from Washington DC on

my boys are 15 and 13 - we STILL Easter Egg hunt!!! LOVE IT!! And yes - we color eggs. We ensure that they are TOTALLY dry before we put them back in the fridge.

oh yeah - we don't color them until they are TOTALLY dry from hard boiling them. I know that makes a HUGE difference.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Jacksonville on

I ran into this dilemma when my kids were young also. I remember we colored boiled eggs and they sat out on the counter in a bowl for DAYS. And we ate them.. no problem! Ever.
I read the same "rules" as you. Don't leave them out more than 2 hours. So I, too, refrigerated, and ended up with a condensation colored mess. Gross.

Spoiled the whole thing for me.
My kids are older now, so I don't bother with it. But geesh. Makes you wonder whats different now that you can't leave them sitting out. Or maybe we're all just paranoid these days. I don't know.
And for whatever it's worth, I grew up (and still live) in South Coastal GA. For those who don't know, it's a warm, humid climate. Somewhere that you'd think heat might be an issue with eggs left out. But we did it my entire childhood, and I have no doubt my mom's childhood was the same. Nobody every got sick and we all loved eating hard boiled Easter eggs with a little salt.
So your post got me curious (when my kids were small enough to do this, the internet wasn't so full of information/blogs/etc just yet. I just used CDC recommendations.
But just now, I looked it up and found several sources that say that AS LONG AS the egg shell is not cracked, then you are good for probably up to a week unless it's full summer with no A/C (100* F). The boiling sterilizes them, and the shell and internal membrane keep out bacteria for some time after. So this explains how we did it as a kid. Because my dad would not turn on the a/c before July 4. It was a rule. :)
So enjoy.
Sorry to keep editing. This just brought back a flood of happy Easter memories from childhood. We would all go to gramma's house (all the cousins) and every family brought a dozen decorated Easter eggs. The adults hid them and all the cousins would hunt them. Then we'd sit around in swings on the porch and crack them (sometimes on each other's heads) and eat them with a dash of salt. We'd eat 2 or 3 each... it was wonderful. Such fun and simple times. What wasn't eaten was divided up between the families and taken home. My brothers and I would re-hide the eggs after school (or during spring break) and have more egg hunts with them and eat them as snacks for the rest of the week. (Mom always boiled 2 dozen eggs, not just the dozen we took to gramma's.)
Now, nobody uses real eggs. They're all the plastic candy filled things, and kids find them, crack them open and stuff themselves full of sugar. I think things were much better when we ate whole protein as a snack. ;)

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Atlanta on

We use a mixture of both. With 4 boys, it can get expensive.

We hard boil the eggs, let them cool, towel them dry and start coloring. We use the "crowns" that come in coloring kits to allow the eggs to dry completely prior to putting them in the fridge.

We've left them on the counter for a long time and had no problems with consuming them after sitting out.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Thanks for posting this.

We have done the eggs where you make a tiny hole in one end and blow the inside outs with a straw and we make omelettes. Then we wash them and dye them - I've used the kits but we've also made our own using household ingredients like coffee or tea - and then we've kept those special ones and bring them out every year. One year we stuck cotton balls on them and drew faces for lambs after dying the eggs brown with coffee.

Definitely going to try just coloring boiled eggs. Our way is very time consuming but they are beautiful and I have them going years back now to display on our table.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

We use to dye real hard boiled eggs, but the plastic eggs are so easy, and you can put a small candy or toy or coin in them - that we just use the plastic eggs exclusively now for the Easter Egg hunt.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Orlando on

We always boil them first (like the night before), chill them and then color them. Make sure the dye is dried before putting them back in the egg carton and fridge.

They do make fake eggs to color, check out any craft store and even Wal-Mart. We use the fake ones for different types of paint and decorations, the dye is better with real eggs that have been hard boiled.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Rochester on

We always hard boil the eggs the day before (usually on Friday) and put them in the frig over night. Then we let them warm to room temperature before dying them. We put them back in the frig until Sunday morning. I hide them right before we plan to hunt for them (an hour or less). I don't remember them getting condensation or color coming off. Maybe because most Easters we seem to have snow.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Not sure if this is something you might be looking for, but I saw a post on Facebook that used flowers, leaves, and natural dyes like red cabbage and onion skins, and keeping things put together with pieces of old pantyhose or knee-highs. I thought it was interesting - I wonder if the natural dyes wouldn't come off?

Here's one link but you can Google natural dyes for Easter eggs or Easter Eggs hosiery and get a number of sites. The trick seems to be boiling the egg in the water with the onion skins or other natural product - maybe the dye sets better?

I've also seen rubber bands of varying widths put around the eggs to create a pattern - you can put them on a plain white egg, or dye the egg first in a light shade, let it dry, add the rubber bands, and then dye it with a darker shade.That might be a fun alternative too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

If the coloring came off, how did you handle them? How long were the eggs in the dye and what dye did you use? We had color come off when we used natural dyes (like made from onions) but not when we used the store bought dye kits. We just did some eggs today and they are not slimy. Don't leave the eggs in for more than a few minutes and follow the directions on the package for how to mix the dye. Our eggs are now in the fridge. We store them in the original carton. These, however, are not the eggs that are left out. Our EB leaves us plastic eggs. Just one dozen, filled with jellybeans.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Do a few then eat them or crack them open and make potato salad or tuna salad or chicken salad or have a chef's salad.

You don't have to just sit and eat boiled eggs. You can always throw them away too.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

When my kids were younger, we switched from dyeing eggs to sugar cookie eggs. It just seemed that between the dye getting everywhere, to trying the real stuff (blueberry and natural dyes), and the amount of eggs we dyed (and then got sick of eating) that it was more time and expense than ultimate enjoyment.

So we threw sugar cookie egg decorating parties. I made the dough and cut out large egg shapes and baked them (this was before the kids were old enough to roll dough evenly or to handle hot cookie sheets coming out of the oven). Then we spread a clean sheet or tablecloth on the floor, and I set out all kinds of frostings, gels, candies, sprinkles, along with brushes, toothpicks and other decorating tools. etc. Each kid got to make their own creation. Some were globs of frosting, and some of the older kids got really artistic (it was my kids and either neighbors or cousins). Everyone took a plate of cookies home, and the kids were encouraged to share a cookie with a friend, a neighbor, someone who needed cheering up, grandma,nursing staff at grandma's assisted living facility, or their family as dessert that night. There were no leftovers and the kids had a blast.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from St. Louis on

They have wraps for the eggs.



answers from Portland on

Try color crayons. I'm not joking. I did a few of those some years ago and it was fun. Hard-boil, let cool/chill, then bring them out with a cup of bright crayons. So much fun! and the wax color doesn't permeate the eggshell or come off on your hands.



answers from Los Angeles on

We boil ours for quite a long time (10-15 mins), take them out & let
them air dry on a paper towel lined plate. We wait until they are completely
dry BEFORE dying. Also, I've found the dye pellets you dissolve in water come
out lighter, not as vibrant in color and can "rub off" so we use the pellets
w/vinegar. Much brighter, better staying power etc. We let them air dry on counter
for about 10 mins, dye them in the vinegar color then dry on the pop out circles on
provided on back of carton. Once they are dry, we immediately put them back into egg
carton they came from and put them into the fridge. The Easter bunny hides them that
morning right before the kiddos get up then kids go hunt them right after they wake up
so the eggs are never out very long. Also, before dogs can find them and have an egg
breakfast (ha ha). The Easter bunny, also, hides plastic eggs filled w/a few coins, plastic
rings, candy etc. The kids have fun re-hiding plastic eggs for each other all morning long.
Then we have breakfast and a nice ham dinner later that night.


answers from Boston on

Boil the eggs the day before and put them in the fridge to get cold. Dye the eggs and let them dry off before putting them back in the fridge.

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