Homemade Automatic Dishwashing Detergent Saved The Day

Let me start out by saying that I am not, I repeat, I am not the clean one in our relationship. I can mess up a kitchen, bathroom and any other room you need demolishing in a second, but just done ask me to clean it up. My wonderfully amazing hubby gets all the credit for how clean our apartment is.

Anyway, last week he asked me to pick up some automatic dishwashing detergent. We were out. I happened to be running errands that day anyway, so I didn’t see a problem in picking some up.

So, tell me why I completely forgot to pick up the dishwashing detergent? I swear I’m losing my mind sometimes…

Of course, I didn’t realize it until later that night when Scott asked me where I had put the detergent. And since neither one of us wanted to go back out that day, I decided to see if I could find a homemade dishwashing detergent recipe online.

I immediate found three recipes. Two of the recipes had washing soda in them – which is something I had never heard of until this past weekend. The other dishwashing detergent recipe only had two ingredients of which we had. :-)

Homemade Dishwashing Detergent

1 part borax
1 part baking soda

I mixed the ingredients together, threw it in the dishwasher and began praying that we didn’t just mess up all our dishes. I was shocked to see how CLEAN the dishes were when they finally finished. They seemed much cleaner this time around.

I was kind of exciting to run the dishwasher again. This time I loaded the dishwasher (don’t faint… I can be helpful at times… lol). I wanted to see if the dishes would come out clean for me too. Sure enough, they came out clean again.

I was even more excited at the fact that we now knew how to make our own homemade dishwashing detergent. It’s cheaper than buying the store bought stuff and we get control what goes into it.

I’d be interested to find out if any of you have ever make your own homemade dishwashing detergent before. If you have, how did it work out for you? If you haven’t, would you be willing to give it a try?

About Natalie

I'm a newly married, 30 something year old nanny who is looking to make her big break in this world. I started my entrepreneurial journey almost 10 years ago when I graduated university because I believed that there HAD to be something better than working for others. My first business was newborn care services which I still run today. Connect with me onTwitter andFacebook


  1. Hi Natalie! First off, I’m with ya on being the messy one – so much so that my husband calls me Pig-pen – no joke! I LOVE the idea of being able to control what’s going into my dish soap ESPECIALLY since that affects virtually everything else since we EAT off of them! lol. My husband and I don’t have any Borax lying around but I could be convinced to grab some if you could tell me the price difference between the homemade solution and the store-bought. Is that possible? I’d love to know!

    • LOL, that is too funny Alysa! My hubby calls me a cat because I love to mess up a freshly cleaned room! Sorry about not adding the cost factor into the post. I get so excited about things, I forget very important details like COST. I think we paid about $4.25 or so for our for a 4 lbs 12 oz box of borax from Target and .52 cent for our 1 lbs box of baking soda. Now, I’m not a math wise here, so the actually brake down could be off slightly.

      Ok, so here goes:

      4 lbs 12 oz box of borax = about 8.5 cups
      8.5 cups = .50 cents per cup

      1 lbs of baking soda = 2 cups
      2 cups = .26 cent per cup

      So, say you decided to make a 1 cup batch of detergent:

      1 cup of borax = .50 cent
      1 cup of baking soda = .26 cent
      Total of .76 cent

      Oh, I also forgot to mention that you only need a table spoon per load which makes that saving even better. :-)
      Anyway, I hope that helps. And thank you for asking that question. It helped me to think more about the benefits of making our own dishwashing detergent.

  2. Whenever I have an extra few minutes, I visit Pinterest where I find soooo many homemade recipes for so many things we use everyday! This is a great idea! Thanks for sharing:)

  3. I am having a problem with it getting hard as a rock!!!!! help!!!!

    • Natalie says:

      Sorry to hear your having that problem! Try adding citric acid to it or a bit of rice to it. ;-)

  4. Jessica says:

    These comments came through just as I was sitting here berating myself for forgetting to get dishwashing detergent TWICE while I was out yesterday! I am completely out and because I plan to spend the evening cooking, I have to get up and go get some…unless you all know a recipe for plain old dishwashing liquid:)

    • Natalie says:

      I’m sorry I didn’t see this sooner Jessica! You could have used a teaspoon of Dawn or other dishwashing liquid with a teaspoon of borax or baking soda. :-)

  5. Natalie, you rock! You are on the top of the searches for Dishwashing Detergent! So glad I found this recipe and thank you so much!! I so love natural recipes

    ♥ Love ya,

    • Natalie says:

      You are most welcome, MJ! :-) I’d love to hear how you like it. And thank you for letting me know where I stand in searches. It’s exciting to see that my work is starting to pay off. Love you lots!!

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