More Chocolate? Other Ways to Fill Easter Eggs

ID-10074204Traditional easter egg baskets are filled with chocolate, but why not consider some other ideas this year? 

I’ve been asking patients in the practice some of the ways they celebrate easter weekend with their children and they have shared some fantastic, creative ideas.  Whether you create a basket for children in your life or conduct an easter egg hunt, consider these tips to avoid the overdose of chocolate, sugar and unnecessary waste that is often created with commercial packages.

Chocolate, jellybeans, and candy are fun treats for most children and adults, but in moderation! Even a teaspoon of sugar causes the immune system cells to drop substantially, and can dramatically affect behavior.

If you enjoy filling eggs, purchase ones (yes even plastic) that you can reuse every year and try some of these items to place inside…

  • Stickers, coins, small toys
  • For older children try little pieces of paper with bigger ‘prizes’  written on them. Then create a scavenger hunt to find them too!
  • Use numbers or symbols inside the eggs, and have a corresponding chart for them to follow on – they will love the challenge and skills they will build!

As with all gift-giving, don’t forget about the gifts of ‘experiences’. Many of us already have enough ‘stuff’. Movie/event tickets, lessons for a sport or hobby, gift cards for music or clothing, jewellery, sports cards, games (especially if they are ones you can play as a family!)

Get creative, have some fun, and share  some of your favorite ideas too!


Healthy, Colourful, Eggs for Easter

Dying eggs is a common, fun, activity for Easter Celebrations…but have you ever thought about what you are using to create those psychedelic colours? Commercial food dyes are created from many chemicals that do not belong in your body.  This year, consider food based dyes – your kitchen might already be full of them!


Select a dyeing agent, and place it in a large pot using the amount listed below.  Add 1 quart of water and 2 tablespoons white vinegar to pot; if more water is necessary to cover ingredients, proportionally increase the amount of vinegar.  Bring to a boil, and lower heat.

Allow the ingredients to simmer for 30 minutes.  Strain dye into a

bowl, and let cool.

☻            Red-cabbage dye: 4 cups chopped cabbage

☻            Turmeric dye: 3 tablespoons turmeric

☻            Onion-skin dye: 4 cups onion skins ( skins of about 12        onions)

☻            Beet dye: 4 cups chopped beets

☻            Coffee dye: 1 quart strong black coffee (instead of water)

Cold Dipping Method

With this method, the eggs and the ingredients for the dye are boiled separately.  Using a metal spoon, lower cooled hard-boiled eggs into a bowl of dye, and let them soak for as little as 5 seconds or as long as overnight, depending on the depth of colour you desire.  Remove eggs with spoon, pat dry with paper towels, and let dry on a wire rack.  The cold-dipping method produces subtle, translucent shades, but can result in an uneven colour unless the eggs are rotated vigilantly while in the dye.  Lightly rub with olive oil when dry for shine.

Boiled Method

This method involves boiling the eggs with the dye; the heat allows the dye to saturate the shells, resulting in intense, uniform colours. Set raw eggs in a pot of strained dye; bring to a boil for the amount of time specified in our colour glossary. Remove and dry eggs as with the cold-dipping method.

Natural dyes can sometimes produce unexpected results, so don’t be surprised if, for example, your red-cabbage dye yields blue eggs.  Use the following guide to help you achieve the colours you desire.

Deep Gold:  boil eggs in turmeric solution, 30 minutes.

Sienna: boil eggs in onion-skin solution, 30 minutes.

Dark, Rich Brown: boil eggs in black coffee, 30 minutes.

Pale yellow: soak eggs in room-temperature turmeric solution, 30 minutes.

Orange: soak eggs in room-temperature onion-skin solution, 30 minutes.

Light Brown: soak eggs in room-temperature black coffee, 30 minutes.

Light Pink: soak eggs in room-temperature beet solution, 30 minutes.

Light Blue: soak eggs in room-temperature cabbage solution, 30 minutes.

Royal Blue: soak eggs in room-temperature cabbage solution overnight.

Lavender: soak eggs in room-temperature turmeric solution, 30 minutes. Follow with room-temperature cabbage solution, 30 seconds.

Chartreuse: soak eggs in room-temperature turmeric solution, 30 minutes.  Follow with room-temperature beet solution, 5 seconds.

Salmon: soak eggs in room-temperature turmeric solution, 30 minutes. Follow with room-temperature beet solution, 30 minutes.