Make your own dishwasher detergent

It’s been a while since I made a new DIY post, so here’s my latest project: dishwasher detergent.

It’s so simple — much easier than my soap recipe or even the DIY deodorant.



Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 cup borax (natural disinfectant)
  • 1 cup baking soda (natural disinfectant)
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt (reduces effect of hard water)
  • 2 packets lemonade-flavored Kool-Aid, unsweetened (Citric acid is the main ingredient in these powdered packets, and it removes hard water stains. You can also buy citric acid from a place that sells brewing ingredients, but I think Kool-Aid is much easier to come by.)

Simply mix these ingredients together and you’ve got homemade dishwasher detergent! Add 2 tablespoons to the detergent compartment just as you would with store-bought detergent.

I’ve only used this mixture twice on my own dishes, but the results have been the same as with the Seventh Generation detergent I was using previously so I’ll keep using it. I also plan to try adding 1/2 a cup of vinegar to the rinse cycle because I’ve heard that really makes your dishes come out sparkly clean.

Happy dish washing!

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3 thoughts on “Make your own dishwasher detergent

  1. Going to give it a shot! (I’m kinda scared of kool-aid now. Citric acid is the main ingredient??)

  2. If you prefer a liquid detergent, you can boil soap nuts in water and then use the cooled liquid in the dishwasher. To get sparkly dishes you would want to include vinegar as a rinse aid.

    This is yet another tidbit of knowledge I keep in the back of my mind in case the corny (citric acid) detergents try to kill me.

  3. I was considering making some detergent with my giant bag of soapnuts! I’ll have to try that next time. Thanks, Jami!

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