Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

I hope y'all are having success making and using the homemade liquid laundry detergent we posted a couple of weeks ago!  It got me thinking about what else I could make with the same ingredients to get the most bang for my buck. 

As usual, my inspiration is usually my wallet.  I hate spending money on something that I can make a lot cheaper, but like many of you I'm picky about it doing the job.  Recipes for homemade items are all over the internet, but my job is to do the research and the trial for you!  So here goes. 

Here's what you'll need:

1 cup Borax
1 cup Washing soda
1/2 cup Epsom salt OR kosher salt
10 tbsp. lemon juice
Egg carton or ice cube tray (optional)


Pour the 3 dry ingredients together in a bowl and mix well.

Be sure to break up any Borax clumps until smooth.

Mix in the lemon juice. 

The lemon juice will foam a little, but this is not a big deal.  The consistency will be like moist sand.  Just keep stirring until all the powder is moist. 

Now you have a choice.  You can have a powder that you scoop with a spoon, or you can make pucks.  I decided to try it both ways for you.

To make pucks, just place a couple of teaspoons of the detergent in each compartment of an ice cube tray or egg carton.  Let it sit out overnight to harden. 

I put mine in the window sill to let the warmth harden it faster.

In the morning, carefully dump the pucks out into a container. 

Or you can just put it in a sealed container as is and scoop it out with a spoon. 

Yes, it's really that easy.  Honestly, if you're already making the laundry detergent, this only makes sense since you have at least 2 of the 4 ingredients on hand already! 

This recipe will last me maybe a couple of weeks, but because it takes less than 5 minutes to put together I have no problem making it regularly.

I ran a couple of loads with this detergent, and I couldn't tell any difference from my regular detergent.  I should say, though, that I usually put my dishes in *relatively* clean -- meaning, I don't leave lots of dried food on my dishes before I wash them.  I can't promise that ANY detergent will
get off dried egg!  So if you usually put your dishes in the dishwasher without any prep, you're on your own!  :-)

As an extra boost, add some vinegar and even a couple drops of lemon essential oil as a rinse agent.  This will ensure your dishes are shiny and spotless!

Happy washing!

Pam Pin It!


Mama to 4 said...

that is awesome, I so am going to have to try this! I am pinning! Thanks!

Margaret said...

This is a great idea.


I had no idea you could make your own dishwasher detergent! That is so cool! And i never would have thought about using Lemon juice!! Fantastic. I will definitely have to try this once I use up the bottle we have now.

Joelen Tan said...

Thank you for this! I'll need to make this as I'm about to run out of detergent soon!

JDaniel4's Mom said...

This sounds wonderful. I need to do something to help my 19 year old dishwasher do its job.

Courtney B said...

this is so cool! and would save me so much money!

alissa apel said...

This is great! I'm making some as soon as I run out of the other stuff!

Heather McDougle said...

Wow! Thanks! That looks pretty easy and would save us money. We are always doing laundry.

amy2blessings said...

I'm going to try this, I have been wanting to do this but couldn't find a good recipe. Thanks for sharing!!!!

Lori said...

I have made this in two minutes when I realized I was out of detergent--it really is super easy. I never thought of making it into cubes though--very handy.

JRFrugalMom and Family said...

Wow, what a great idea. Now I just need the dishwasher...

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