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Homemade Food Coloring

Why use artificial food coloring when you can make your own? This awesome hands-on activity—perfect for kids and complete with some juicy raspberry smashing to get started on red—comes from our Kitchen Academy box, titled Eat the Rainbow.

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Ingredients:

For red dye
  • 1 cup raspberries (fresh or thawed)
For yellow dye
  • 1 cup mangos, cubed
For purple dye
  • 1 cup blackberries (fresh or thawed)
For orange dye
  • ½ cup mangos, cubed
  • ½ cup raspberries
For green dye
  • 1 cup frozen spinach (thawed)

Steps:

  1. Step 1

    Place your ingredient(s) in a blender, or use a mortar and pestle. For red, yellow, and orange dye, smash the ingredients into a pulp or blend until smooth. (Smashing is more fun!) For green dye, use a blender and add 2 tablespoons of water before blending.

  2. Step 2

    Strain the mashed ingredients into a measuring cup through a cheesecloth or fine mesh sieve. If using a cheesecloth, gather the corners to form a ball, then squeeze the juice into the cup. If using a strainer, gently press the fruit (or spinach, for green) with a spoon or spatula.

  3. Step 3

    Transfer the strained liquid to a dropper bottle or small jar. Keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.