Enjoy Life Foods

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Add All-Natural Color to (your Food) Life!

Food-Dyes_IG_FINALI love festive holiday food. Especially when it has fun decorations. And chocolate (of course!). My sisters and I used to go all out for different holidays – we’d make cookies and spend hours artistically frosting each cookie to perfection. This was something we did all throughout my childhood and still do to this day. When I found out about my food allergies (corn in particular), this got a bit trickier. Even though I’ve found some good gluten-free and dairy-free sugar cookie recipes (not to mention, Enjoy Life’s Sugar Crisp Crunchy Cookies!), it’s really hard to find food coloring that doesn’t have artificial ingredients or top allergens in it, so I had to stick with white frosting for a while. Not as fun, maybe, but still yummy!

However, one of the silver linings of living with food allergies is that it makes you get creative when it comes to cooking. There are several natural ingredients that you can use as food coloring here are some of my favorites from Nourishing Joy:

Red

  • Pure Beet Juice
  • Pure Pomegranate Juice
  • Beet Powder

Orange

  • Pure Carrot Juice
  • Carrot Powder
  • Paprika

Yellow

  • Ground Turmeric
  • Fresh Turmeric Juice
  • Saffron

Green

  • Liquid Chlorophyll
  • Matcha Powder
  • Parsley Juice
  • Spinach Powder

Blue

  • Red Cabbage Juice
  • Any purple colorant + baking soda

Purple

  • Purple Sweet Potatoes
  • Purple Carrots
  • Pure Blueberry Juice

Brown

  • Espresso
  • Cocoa Powder
  • Cinnamon

Black

  • Black Cocoa Powder
  • Activated Charcoal Powder

To make the powders Slice and spread the fruit or vegetable on a tray. Dehydrate in a dehydrator or an oven at 150˚F for about 2-6 hours or until completely dried out. Then, place in a food processor or blender and grind into a fine powder. This is shelf-stable and can be stored in a sealed container for up to a year.

To make the liquid coloring Pour 1 cup of fruit or vegetable juice (color of your choice) into a crockpot over very low heat, leaving the lid off of the pot. Do this until the juice begins to thicken, which will be roughly 24 hours. At this point, the juice will have reduced to about ¼ cup. This liquid color should keep in the fridge for 2-4 weeks.

How cool are these ideas? When you’re using these ingredients as food coloring, you’ll want to remember a few things. First of all, these colorants may be more or less concentrated than commercial food dyes, so I recommend starting out with a small amount and adding more until you reach your desired shade. Also, many of these ingredients pack a strong flavor, so make sure you choose accordingly. This is also true for texture. Depending on what you want to color, choose a liquid or powder colorant.

I don’t know about you, but now I’m in the mood to go all out with the food coloring and make some fun 4th of July cookies! Will you be trying these natural food dyes out? Tag @enjoylifefoods on social media or email me at kshannon@enjoylifefoods.com with photos of your colorful creations. I’d love to see what you make!

Eat Freely,

Kathleen

 

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