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Crafting homemade dishwasher detergent is a delightful blend of chemistry and creativity. With careful measurement and a touch of experimentation, the mixture takes shape, promising to banish grime and grease from dishes with ease.

Pouring the concoction into airtight containers, it’s a satisfying moment of DIY achievement, knowing that every cycle will be powered by your own eco-friendly creation.

❤️Why You’ll Love Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

Homemade dishwasher detergent offers a unique allure that transcends mere cleanliness. It’s a cost-effective alternative to store-bought options, saving both money and frequent trips to the store. The customizable nature of homemade detergent allows for tailored fragrances and formulas, catering to individual preferences and sensitivities. Whether infused with calming lavender or zesty lemon, each batch becomes a personalized creation, enhancing the dishwashing experience with a touch of creativity.

Beyond financial savings and customization, homemade dishwasher detergent champions environmental stewardship. By eschewing harsh chemicals and plastic packaging prevalent in commercial products, it presents a sustainable choice for conscientious consumers.

With ingredients sourced from pantry staples and reusable containers, it minimizes waste and carbon footprint, aligning with eco-friendly lifestyles. Embracing homemade detergent isn’t just about clean dishes; it’s a small yet impactful step towards fostering a greener, more sustainable future for generations to come.

🧽 Materials for Homemade Dish Washer Detergent

What is washing soda? Why’s is it important for homemade dishwasher detergent?
Washing soda, also known as sodium carbonate, soda ash, or soda crystals, is a chemical compound with the formula Na2CO3. It is a highly alkaline substance, and it is primarily used as a laundry booster and household cleaner.

Here are some key characteristics of washing soda:

  1. Alkalinity: Washing soda is highly alkaline, with a pH level of around 11. This alkalinity makes it effective for cutting through grease, stains, and grime.
  2. Water Softener: It has water softening properties, meaning it can help to remove mineral deposits and improve the effectiveness of laundry detergents, especially in hard water areas.
  3. Solubility: Washing soda is soluble in water, allowing it to dissolve and distribute evenly in solutions.

🧼 How to Do

Be sure to close the lid tightly when done and when you store homemade dishwasher detergent. And only use 2 tbsp per load of dishes!

Watch me make homemade dishwasher detergent on Instagram.

🪄 Tips and Tricks for Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

  • Need a boost? Add 1/2 cup of oxygen whitening to the mix and stir. I like Whole Foods brand or @branchbasics
  • Clumping? Add two tablespoons of bentonite clay in a pouch or small sock to absorb moisture but not mix with your formula.
  • Have really hard water? Add 1/4 cup citric acid through a wash cycle (while the dishwasher is empty) once per month.

🗒 Variation

Lemon Fresh Formula: Mix in a generous amount of grated lemon zest for a refreshing scent and extra grease-cutting power to your homemade dishwasher detergent.

🗒 Substitutions

  1. Castile Soap and Baking Soda: Combine 2 tablespoons of liquid castile soap with 1/4 cup of baking soda to create a paste-like consistency. Apply this mixture to a damp sponge and use it to scrub dishes before loading them into the dishwasher. The combination of castile soap and baking soda effectively removes food residue and grease.
  2. Salt and Vinegar: Sprinkle coarse salt directly onto dirty dishes before loading them into the dishwasher. The abrasiveness of the salt helps to scrub away stubborn stains and food particles. Additionally, adding a cup of white vinegar to the bottom of the dishwasher before running a cycle can help to sanitize and deodorize dishes while also preventing mineral buildup in the machine.

🫙 How to Store 

Store in an airtight container.

🤔 Common Questions

Is homemade dishwasher detergent effective?

Yes–experimentation and adjustments to the recipe may be necessary to find a formulation that works best for your dishwasher and water hardness level.

Will troubleshooting be needed with homemade dishwasher detergent?

If you encounter issues such as spotting, residue, or poor cleaning performance when using, there are several troubleshooting steps you can take. Adjusting the recipe by adding more or less of certain ingredients, using distilled water instead of hard water.

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Dishwasher Detergent

Homemade dishwasher detergent embodies both efficacy and eco-consciousness. A fragrant blend of natural components, it's a testament to ingenuity and sustainability, promising sparkling clean dishes without the chemical residue.
With a dash of creativity and a pinch of care for the environment, this homemade solution transforms dishwashing into a wholesome ritual, leaving dishes gleaming and the conscience clear.


  • 4 cups washing soda
  • 15-30 drops grapefruit essential oil, optional
  • 5-10 drops drops lemon essential oil, optional


  • Add the 4 cups of washing soda to a jar with a tight lid.
  • Add essential oils if you want and then stir completely.
  • Close the lid tightly and store, use 2 tbsp per load of dishes.
Make this recipe?Mention @itsnicolejaques or tag #nicolejaques!

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About Nicole Jaques

I’m a wife, mom of two, home cook, and avid entertainer. I have developed my own DIY cleaners that are low tox and take pride in having a home that is clean and organized. However, I am human! I like to see dirt under my nails from my garden and my children’s handprints on my windows, and I’m one of the messiest cooks you’ll ever meet!

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    1. Yes! Linked on my Amazon storefront for ease, but honestly just look for one that is the right size for you. I tend to buy them too big. Most all washing soda will work!