Wednesday, July 25, 2012

All Natural Food Colorings

Artificial Food colorings have been found to cause allergies, cancer, possibly contribute to hyperactivity, and multiple other problems in lots of people.  I for one am allergic to nearly every artificial food coloring there is.  Just what is artificial food coloring made from?  It really depends on what color you are talking about.  The Food & Drug Administration has a labeling requirement that they must meet certain strict requirements to pass their inspections to be allowed to be put into foods or cosmetics.  However, these requirements have changed tremendously over the years.  If I were to tell you that certain colorings had acetone, hexane, petroleum, coal, or derivatives of bugs in them?  Would you eat that?  I certainly would not.  But, that is what is in many artificial food colorings.  What's even more surprising is that many Eastern European countries have now banned the use of artificial food colorings and have turned to natural food colorings!  So, why does the USA and the FDA still allow this junk to remain in our food?  I for one think it is criminal that they continue to do so, but that is my personal opinion!!

What is a Natural Food Coloring?  Natural Food Colorings are those things that are found 'naturally' in nature that can be used to color something else.  Several examples:

Turmeric or saffron are excellent choices to color things in the yellow hues.

Beet Powder can be used for red or even any red berry.

Matcha Powder or Spirulina Powder - Matcha Powder is a natural green tea found in health food stores.  Gives a wonderful fluorescent color to bright green color.  Spirulina Powder is a blue-green algae that is really a dark green (almost hunter green) in color and is more for a solid food coloring such as cakes, frostings, etc.  You can also use spinach juice or whole crushed dried leaves.  I tried the Spirulina Powder in a jelly (liquid) and it didn't quite turn out.  I will try the Matcha Powder next to see how that does.

Carrot Juice - will give you orange

Grape Juice - will give you purple, but you can also use red cabbage (cut the cabbage and boil in water until you get the desired hue)!!

To get blue, use the same red cabbage but add in baking soda until you get the hue you want!!  I have used this color and it works well!!

I'm still experimenting with how to make these colorings and am open to any and all questions about what to do, how to do things!!  If you have any questions, comments, please by all means, leave them!!


  1. Amen! Great post, thank you.

    I am constantly disgusted by the widespread use of artificial colors. I'm also constantly surprised at some of the places they appear.

    Thank you for sharing your natural alternatives. It's still fun to make safe, yummy, natural foods at home like rainbow, vegan cake! Bug part free!

    1. I'm glad it helped!! I too can't believe where it appears!! How about food coloring in vanilla frosting? Why? I can't even buy frosting!!