homemade dishwasher detergent

I jinxed myself.. of course. I've been putting off making my own dish detergent because I have this HUGE bottle of Cascade to get through first.

Not anymore. Did I have lots of dishes suddenly and go through an extra large bottle quickly? No...

Do I suddenly have an extra large bottle that sounds like it is filled with gravel and has to be thrown away? Yes...

I think it MIGHT be because there is no insulation in the wall of our kitchen where the cabinets are. Yes, that's the wall where I just painted the ceramic backspash. So, we're in our "thinking of a cheap solution" mode for that chilly problem. We left the detergent on the counter overnight in hopes that it just needed to thaw out. No dice. (Well, actually it sounds like it is filled with dice...)

I hate throwing away things.... especially big bottles that are still 3/4 full!

So, I gathered my ingredients (which are the same as the laundry detergent I made ) and mixed it up. It really isn't hard. It is even easier than the laundry soap. I have two recipes.....

Recipe 1:
1 cup Borax
1 cup washing soda

Recipe 2:
1 cup Borax
1 cup baking soda

Since I have all three ingredients, I made a combo. I only used 1/2 cup Borax, 1/2 cup washing soda, and threw in some baking soda for good measure.

I mixed it up, put the lid on it, and shook it up. My Borax is getting a little clumpy, so I mixed it all up with a fork so I could sift through it and mash the clumps (I'm sure there is a technical term for that, but I don't know it...).

You only need 2 TBS per load. I have the first batch in the dishwasher right now. Yeah, I know, I should probably wait until I see the end results before I post... ah well :)  My mom recently made some with baking soda and Borax and it happy with her results. I'll let you know about mine.

I wasn't sure what to store it in. I remembered that I have these lids for canning jars and happened to recently have emptied this jar.

Dave Ramsey will be proud. (well, minus having to throw away a good deal)

Check out the link parties to the right. I shared this post with We Are That Family. (I still love that name :))


  1. Nice. I'm gonna have to give that a shot!

  2. Let us know if it works. If it does... I will definitely give it a go. Cascade is expensive!

  3. Oh and I want Dave Ramsey to be proud of me too...lol!

  4. Chris, It worked, but it didn't get a few things clean. They were things that I should have rinsed first though. I'm gonna give it another shot today :)

  5. I have been using homemade laundry detergent foe about 3 months and was wondering how to DIY some for the dish washer. This looks interesting how did it work for you??

  6. Does this work for stuck-on food? I've tried something similar and found that the dishes only came out clean when they went in clean. LOL!

  7. It seemed to work for me too...but only at first. Eventually it allowed a brown or white film to develop on all my dishes. Even with vinegar in the rinse cycle. I tried it for months because I don't like buying stuff. But I had to give up. :( Still searching for a better recipe.

  8. I do have to rinse. But I don't clean the dishes before I put them in. I do a 2 second under the water rinse. It has gotten some dried food off that I didn't expect. And I've had to put a few things in twice before they got clean. I've not had any trouble at all with it. My mom is testing out some other recipes but she doesn't like any as well as the one I tried.
    Good luck! Let me know how it turns out and if you try some other recipe!

  9. I have been considering the laudnry soap thing for a while now, but it seemed to make so much, but if I can reuse some of the ingredients for dishsoap, than I won't have to worry about storing so much.
    And, it doesn't sound like I have to break a blender to make it.


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