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How to make dishwashing detergent

Updated on September 7, 2012
dish detergent
dish detergent

Dishwashing detergent

Making your own dishwasher detergent couldn't be any easier. These recipes only take minutes and you need only a few ingredients. This is a great way to save a little extra money. These detergents are safe and good for the environment because they do not contain any harsh chemicals.

Borax and baking soda
Borax and baking soda
liquid detergent
liquid detergent

Detergent recipes

This is such an easy recipe you only need three ingredients. It only takes minutes and you save so much money.

What you will need

  • Borax
  • Vinegar
  • Baking soda
  • Small container with lid

What to do next

  • Take three cups of borax and put it into the container
  • Then add three cups of baking soda into the conainer
  • Seal the box
  • Shake the mixture
  • Now it is ready to use
  • Use two table spoons per load
  • Add vinegar a couple of tablespoons to the rinse compartment before starting each load

Liquid version

The liquid version is the same only you add three cups of water to the mixture and skip the vinegar. For some reason the liquid version is less likely to leave behind a residue so the vinegar is not needed.

Some different versions

  • You can replace the baking soda with washing soda
  • You can also add a couple of drops of essential oils for fragrance
  • You can add a tablespoon or two of liquid dish soap for extra dirty dishes (to the whole batch of detergent not per load)

washing soda
washing soda


Borax can be found in the same section as laundry soap in most grocery stores. The price is usually about five dollars.

Washing soda can be found in the same section as the borax and can be found in most grocery stores too. The price is usually about five dollars.

Baking soda can be found in the baking section near the flour in most grocery stores. The price is usually about five dollars.

Essential oils can be found online and in some health stores. The price varies depending on the amount and fragrance you choose.

Vinegar can be found in grocery stores and the price is usually under five dollars.

I would love to hear what you think leave a comment

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    • Scribenet profile image

      Scribenet 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I know manufacturer's avoid any sudsing raw materials in dishwasher I was concerned. ( I worked in QC with dishwashing detergents and we pulled any products that were "contaminated" with anything that would potentially foam in the dishwasher)

      Glad to see you have experimented and it helps to re-state that only "tiny amounts" of anything foamy should ever get into "one" load. :)

    • Brittanie2216 profile image

      Brittanie Pervier 5 years ago from Seattle WA

      Yes I have used this before you only add a tablespoon or so to the whole batch so you only get a little tiny bit in each load. I would never use liquid dish soap in the dishwasher by itself but mixed the baking soda and washing soda in little amounts works out totally okie dokie.

    • Scribenet profile image

      Scribenet 5 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Just curious about the liquid dish soap addition for dirtier dishes...

      Would not that amount of dish soap cause sudsing...which may not be so good in a dishwasher!

      Have you actually tried adding liquid dish soap yourself?

      This could be a mess... if it leaks all over the floor because the suds have nowhere else to go...just sayin'. :)