Kids love peeling these eggs to find the colourful jellied Easter eggs hiding inside – a surprise for Easter! (Skip to recipe.)
Cooking with Meredith
What fun to crack an egg and peel away the shell to reveal a glistening treasure of wobbly jellied stripes in soft Easter colours! I want to be a kid again.
Meredith and I made these eggs together for an Easter project – I think it was almost as much fun making them as eating them – although their tart and tangy insides are a wiggly treat to eat.
I used to make these eggs for our kids when they were little, but back then I used commercial, flavoured jelly powder packets to make them. Meredith and I played around with using lemonade and fruit juice to make the jiggly fillings – they turned out just as great, and I think the softer colours are more fun for Easter – but I’ve given instructions to make them either way.
It’s fun to put a bowl of the filled eggs in the center of the table, with their holes facing down so they don’t show. Then watch everyone’s surprise as they crack the eggs to find these jewels inside!
You can lay the eggs on their sides as the jelly sets to make different kinds of patterns.
The biggest job is emptying out the egg shells to use for this project – we had a few meals of scrambled eggs to use up the insides, so no big hardship. If you clean out your eggs a few days ahead, they have a good chance to dry out. It’s a little tricky to poke a hole in the top. Hold the egg firmly in your hand, and use a metal skewer to make the small start hole. You could also use a clean metal screw or large sharp needle.
Then, using the skewer, poke it under the edge of the shell and lift up to gently break out pieces of shell, or use your fingers to break out small pieces, until you have a hole about ½ inch (1cm) in diameter.
Rinse the eggs by filling them with water, then tipping them and shaking them vigourously straight up and down, until the water is all shaken out. (The shaking helps clean out the insides.) Repeat this four or five times, until the water runs clear.
Set the eggs hole-side-down in a carton to drain for about 15 minutes, then turn them right-side-up so the remaining water can evaporate out. Leave them to dry like this at least 24 hours.
Happy Easter and happy-egg-hunting!
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Kitchen Frau Notes: We used double strength lemonade, limeade, and 5-citrus juice from frozen concentrates, and didn’t add any additional sugar. The consensus here was that the lemonade eggs could have been a bit sweeter (they are a treat, after all), so you could add a tablespoon or two of sugar, or a tablespoon of honey, to each juice mixture if you like. When the juice has been gelled it is less intense in flavour than as a liquid, so it will taste less sweet once it has firmed up.
If you make your own lemonade or limeade, make a batch using all the lemon juice and sugar, but half the water you normally would. Measure out the amount you’ll need for the recipe, then add water to the remaining lemonade to use it for drinking.
*To keep it simple, you could also just fill each egg up with juice of all the same colour, and not make layers. If you are doing this project with really young children, that might be a better option.
Surprise Jellied Easter Eggs
- 1 dozen emptied large egg shells, rinsed out and dried
- 1 cup lemonade, made with half the amount of water the recipe calls for (I use frozen lemonade concentrate, mixed with half the amount of water the instructions suggest)
- 1 cup limeade, made with half the amount of water the recipe calls for
- 1 cup orange juice, made with half the amount of water, or use regular strength freshly squeezed orange juice
- 2 tablespoons fresh raspberry juice (drained from defrosted frozen raspberries)
- 6 packets powdered, unflavoured gelatin (7 grams/2¼ teaspoons in each packet) or ¼ cup +1½ teaspoons loose powdered gelatin
- 3 to 6 tablespoons natural evaporated cane sugar or 3 tablespoons honey, optional
To make pink mixture – Remove 2 tablespoons of the lemonade and discard. Replace with 2 tablespoons raspberry juice to make 1 cup total pink juice.
For orange mixture – Add a tiny pinch of turmeric to the orange juice if it isn’t yellow enough.
For light green mixture – Use limeade.
Taste for sweetness and add a tablespoon of honey or a tablespoon or two of sugar to each of the juices, if desired, or leave them tart.
Set out three bowls. Place ½ cup of each of the concentrated juices into the bowls, one type of juice per bowl. Sprinkle each bowl with 2 packets (4½ teaspoons) of the powdered gelatin. Stir with a fork until all the powder is moistened. Let sit and gel for 10 minutes.
Start with whatever colour you’d like to use first. Heat the remaining half cup (120ml) of the matching colour juice until hot, either in the microwave or a small saucepan on the stove. Pour the hot juice over the softened gelatin of the same colour. Stir with a fork until the gelatin is dissolved, and all lumps are gone. Transfer the liquid to a spouted cup or pitcher. (Cover the remaining two bowls of gelled juice with plastic wrap.)
Pour 1 – 1½ tablespoons of the mixture carefully into each egg. Use a small funnel if you have one. Wipe off any drips on the outside of the egg. Tilt some of the eggs onto their sides, if you wish, to make slanted stripes. Support the eggs in the lid of the egg carton, or with wadded up paper towel to keep them sitting angled.
Let the gelatin set, either by carefully placing the eggs in the freezer for 15 minutes (don’t forget about them!) or in the fridge for a half hour or longer. Check if they are set by gently poking into the hole with the end of a chopstick or straw to feel if the gelatin is firm.
Then heat up the half cup of the next juice colour you’d like to use, and repeat the process, letting that layer set.
Repeat with the last colour and fill the eggs to the top.
If at any time the gelatin sets before you finish using it, it can be gently rewarmed in the microwave, or set the cup into simmering water to re-liquify.
If you have any bits of remaining gelatin they can be re-liquified and poured into a small glass or container to make sample jellies.
Let the jellied Easter eggs chill for several hours or overnight to fully set the gelatin. Can be kept refrigerated in their shells for up to a week.
*Optional Variation: Using Jello Powder (makes darker-coloured eggs)
- 1 dozen emptied large egg shells, washed and dried
- 3 packets different coloured Jello powders (85gram/4-serving size)
- 1½ cups (360ml) cold water, divided
- 1½ cups (360ml) boiling water, divided
- 3 packages powdered gelatin (7 grams/2¼ teaspoons in each packet) or 2 tablespoons + ¾ teaspoon loose powdered gelatin
Pour ½ cup (120ml) cold water into a small bowl. Sprinkle with 1 package (2¼ teaspoons) gelatin powder. Let sit for 10 minutes to allow the gelatin to ‘bloom’. In another bowl, empty one packet of Jello powder mix. Pour ½ cup (120ml) boiling water over the powder. Stir until all the Jello granules are dissolved. Add the clear softened gelatin mixture. Stir until the gelatin granules are dissolved, too. Transfer the liquid to a spouted measuring cup or small pitcher. Proceed to fill the egg shells as above.
Repeat with the next colour once the first layer has set, then repeat with the last colour.
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For more fun kitchen projects to make with kids, see the ‘Cooking With Kids’ series.
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