DIY Dragon Fruit Candles: A Green And Frugal Craft Idea
Make An Upcycled Candle Using The Beautiful Skins Of Dragon Fruits And Melting Down Your Old Candles
Make beautiful homemade dragon fruit candles from the bright pink outer shells of a fresh dragon fruit and a few old candles for a frugal and green decorating idea.
I love buying exotic fruits when they become available in our grocery stores, and I was super excited when I saw dragon fruits in the produce section this spring. After we were done enjoying the mild tasting fruit, I couldn't bear to throw the gorgeous fuchsia pink shells in the compost because they were just way too beautiful! I looked at my son and he smiled and we both exclaimed, "Well, of course, we need to make candles with them first!"
If you are anything like me and don't like to waste anything, you probably have a collection of old, burnt candles hidden around your house. I gathered mine up from all the nooks and crannies where I stashed them, dusted them off and melted down the leftover wax to make these inexpensive, yet stunning dragon fruit candles.
What Is Dragon Fruit?
When I was standing in line to pay for my groceries, the man ahead of me asked me what those strange looking pink things were, and the cashier admitted she had no idea. Well, for those of you who have never seen or tried a dragon fruit before, they are a tropical fruit that comes from a cactus plant found in Asia, South America, Mexico and Israel.
They typically have a fuchsia pink outer skin, and depending on the variety, they have a white or deep pink flesh and tiny little black seeds inside. They are very mild in flavor, tasting a little like a mixture of a kiwi and pear.
Dragon fruits, otherwise known as Pitaya, are very nutritious and are considered one of nature's super foods. They are high in fiber, antioxidants and calcium.
Total Cost Of Supplies
1 fresh dragon fruit $1.50 to $3.00
8" piece of string $0
leftover candle wax from old candles $0
Each dragon fruit yields two candles.
Melt down the wax from your old candles. I place a pot on the stove filled with about 2" of water and turn it on low. I set 2 or 3 candles into the pot at a time and allow them to melt. I then pour the melted wax into one larger jar. This is a good time to wash all the now empty little jars because the hot glass makes them super easy to clean.
Wash the skins of the dragon fruit and allow them to dry completely.
Cut a 8" piece of string in half and tie them to a wooden skewer or pencil. - Place the skewer across the tops of the shells and position the strings inside the middle.
You can also use tea light candle wicks instead of string if you have them on hand. These are really handy to have and they are super cheap too, costing only pennies apiece. Anytime you are running low on candles, you can use these wicks to make some mini candles using leftover wax or cooking oil.
Pour the melted wax into the dragon fruit skins and allow to harden completely.
Snip the strings leaving about a 1/2" at the top for the wick.
Grab a match and light your candle! These bright fuchsia pink dragon fruit candles add an exotic & tropical touch to your table décor & parties.
Keep The Candles Refrigerated Until Ready To Use!
The dragon fruit skins are perishable, so it is important to place these in the fridge if you are not burning them right away. They skins will remain firm and supple for 2-3 days before they start wilting and deteriorating.
If you are making a lot of these to add as table decorations for a party, I would make them within 24 hours of the party, preferably on the same day for maximum freshness.
I gave one of these candles as a hostess gift to my neighbors and they loved it. Wrap a piece of clear cellophane around the dragon fruit candle and tie with a pretty ribbon. You can even add a nice candle holder to go with it. Just make sure to tell the recipient that that they are perishable, must be kept refrigerated and used with a couple of days.
These would look gorgeous as a table decoration for a wedding reception or outdoor party. The bright pinks skins would look lovely paired with the colors green, blue and purple.
Dragon Fruit Recipes For Using The Pulp
If you are planning on making these for table decorations, you should have a recipe or two on hand to use up the sweet pulp of the dragon fruit. Dragon fruit tastes yummy cut up and tossed into a fresh fruit or green salad. The peel of the dragon fruit can even be used as a beautiful serving dish!
You can make salad dressings, jams, frozen desserts and so much more with dragon fruit. It's mild flavor pairs well with other fruits and compliments savory dishes. I made homemade popsicles from one of our dragon fruits and they were delicious. You can try my recipe for dragon fruit popsicles or one of the other dragon fruit recipes below.
- Dragon Fruit Martini
Mmmm...serve your guests a tasty, tropical martini made from fresh dragon fruit.
- Dragon Fruit Salad
Fresh fruits tossed with honey and mint, served in the dragon fruit peel.
- Dragon Fruit Jam
Make a batch of homemade jam from the pulp.
- Dragon Fruit Sorbet
Make a yummy frozen sorbet using fresh dragon fruit and a little sugar.
- Strawberry & Dragon Fruit Tartlets
Little tartlets filled with a classic crÃ¨me patisserie, dragon fruit and strawberries.
Make These Candles Even More Green!
Use a tea light candle wick and a little olive oil instead of the wax!
Place the wick in the bottom of the dragon fruit skin. You will need to anchor the wick with a little melted wax or a few small pebbles. Gently pour in a little olive oil, until about 3/4 of the wick is covered.
Strike a match and light the wick!
© 2013 Corrinna Johnson