How To Create Colorful Food-Safe Wood Stain in Just 3 Easy Steps

There are variations on the specific steps in making your food safe wood stain. You need to consider several factors to obtain the best results. But this time, we are talking about doing something more interesting beyond just choosing a wood finish. 

Choosing the perfect finish is a daunting task. When dealing with a food-safe finish, the decision process can be quite tough. Generally, all finishes are food safe. Some may differ in terms of lead content which works as a drier. However, it has been banned for several years also. 

The secret is to wait for finishes until fully cured, which means waiting for about 30 days. You should also know that there are 2 kinds of finish. The first one is oil which can penetrate the woods. The second one is film-forming which can lie on the top surface of the wood. 

After reading through this page, you should learn many things about staining, its benefits and the variety in processes of making one. 

Important Things That You Need to Prepare:

  • Coffee
  • Latex gloves
  • Teabags (tea leaves will also do)
  • Sandpaper
  • Coffee maker (you can also use teapot)
  • Plastic sheeting 
  • Disposable cotton rags 
  • Plastic or glass bowl (large size)
  • Walnut oil, beeswax sealer, almond oil or mineral oil (rub-on)

The Making Process of DIY Food Safe Wood Stain 

You are probably so eager to learn about making DIY food-safe wood finish. But due to some reasons, you still do not have this thing with you until now. Well, now is the perfect time to learn the step-by-step process of creating a quality wood finish. 

1. Make a Coffee or Tea Solution 

Using your coffee maker or your teapot, the first step in this list is to prepare a coffee or tea solution. See to it that it will be highly concentrated. The next part of this step is to determine the size of the wood object you are working on. Then, you can make 2 to 2 ½ gallons of solution. 

Do not forget to prepare twice the amount of coffee or tea necessary for the water used. Take note that the more coffee or tea added to it, the brighter the color you will get. Lastly, pour it carefully into a huge plastic bowl or a glass bowl. 

2. Room Temperature 

Let the tea or coffee solution cool down to room temperature. This time, put on your gloves before soaking the rags into the liquid. Gradually, ring it out. Apply the tea or coffee solution to the wooden object’s raw surfaces. Wait for a few hours and check if the piece has been dried. 

On the other hand, you can improve or make some changes in the tone of the color. If you intend to have a deeper or darker color, simply add another coat. Apply the coat until you get the desired shade. 

3. Final Touches 

The last part of this process of making your food safe wood stain is to apply rub-on beeswax sealer evenly using your cotton rag. Make sure that the rags are clean. Let it dry overnight and cover it properly. To maximize the wood absorption, all you need is to apply another coat. 

More Helpful Tips to Remember 

Now that you have an idea on how to make a bright wood stain, it is best to consider some useful tips that you may never have heard before. Keep them in mind and see amazing results after. 

Get rid of previous polish, stain, sealant or any imperfections in the wood surface. This way, you can let the wood absorb its new color. Using your plastic sheeting and cover around and under your wooden object to get rid of the mess. 

Beeswax wood polish and sealers are not permanent. Thus, you should re-apply them once worn. If you do not have beeswax, there is nothing to worry about. You can prepare some food-safe alternatives such as walnut oil, almond oil, and other nut oils. You can also use mineral oil if neither of these alternatives is available. 

For safety precautions, always wear protective gear such as masks, a respirator, and eyewear especially while sanding materials like wood. 

If you wish to play with colors on your wood stain, why not consider adding a food color in the recipe. Colored stains such as aniline dyes deliver lively colors, but they are not food safe. However, this process works best with light-colored wooden objects. You can use them in children’s toys or wooden utensils. 

To dye your woods, dissolve some drops of food color in water (warm). The more amount of food color added, the more saturated that the wood stain gets. It only takes a couple of minutes to soak your wooden thing in this mixture. However, you can extend it to a few more hours to give deeper penetration of color.  

After this step, let the wood dry thoroughly. You might want to sand it gently since the water can cause the grain to rise. To get a distressing physical look, you can finish it with oil mineral or any food safe wood finish. 


There are some techniques you can use to get the color you like for your DIY food safe wood stain. As you learn some of them, you can decide on where to apply dark stains and light stains (grays, tans, and white). The latter one makes your space look more spacious, more open and even brighter. 

Moreover, do not hesitate to explore further on blackened hues. This is done to emphasize elegance and add drama to any neutral exteriors in your residential or commercial space. 

Have you enjoyed this tutorial? If so then you can start preparing the things mentioned above. Before doing anything, make sure to recall the steps and the important instructions provided in this tutorial. 

Feel free to give your comments about this page and share the good news with everybody. 

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