Friday, February 21, 2014

Rainbow Natural Food Dyes - an Alternative to Artificial Food Dyes

(4 Years)

We have been doing our best to keep artificial food dye away from our kids.  You would think this wouldn't be too difficult, but it can be.  Holidays and birthday parties are here every month, and with those festive occasions are the gorgeous rainbow-colored frostings, cakes, candies, cookies, yadda yadda yadda.  We've learned that as long as we are ALWAYS prepared, we can circumvent the inevitable looks of longing that my kiddies give when they see their friends eating desserts made with  artificial food dye.  In my purse, there are almost always six, yes six, Larabars (their absolute hands-down favorite packaged snack) that have always come to our rescue- eliciting cheers of happiness when I offer them instead of whatever is being served at the party.

At home we make pink pancakes (recipe and post here) and pink cupcakes (recipe and post here).  We've even made green mini cupcakes, thanks to Catherine at Weelicious.   However, I want to make those beautiful rainbow cookies and rainbow cakes, especially with Spring quickly approaching (Dr. Seuss Week, St. Patrick's Day and Easter will be here before we know it).  So my search was on for alternatives to artificial food dyes.

I told the kids that we were going on a rainbow expedition and each week we are going to try to make/bake something with one of the colors of the rainbow.  They are so excited.  We'll post what worked, and what didn't.   Meanwhile, here is a color tinting list:

Pinks- dark and light (not a true red- although, almost every site that I read through said that beets will turn your batter/frosting red)
beets- blended or juiced raw, or roasted, peeled and pureed
strawberries- blended or juiced raw
they are so delicious and you really, truly, cannot taste the beets

carrots- blended or juiced raw

extra egg yokes

baby spinach- blended or juiced raw
kale- blended or juiced raw

red cabbage with baking soda

blueberries- blended or juiced raw
blackberry juice
beets- blended or juiced raw, then mix in a pinch of baking soda

unsweetened cocoa powder (unsweetened dark cocoa powder will produce a much deeper, darker brown if that is preferred)

Happy Eating!

Thank you to my sources:
Kelsey at Itsy Bitsy Foodies
Catherine at Weelicious
Hungry Happenings
My Little Miss and Wild One for being my taste testers

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