Commercial dishwasher detergents often contain harsh chemicals that can be harmful to both our health and the environment. 

With some simple household ingredients like washing soda, borax, salt, and lemon juice you can make your own dishwasher that has no health risks and environment friendly. 

To know more about how to make dishwasher detergent at home stay with this article.

How to Make Dishwasher Detergent?

Here I will share two methods of how to make DIY dishwasher detergent.  

Recipe 1

Before you dive into the step-by-step process of making your own dishwasher detergent, make sure you have the ingredients. 

  • Baking Soda (1 cup): Baking soda is a versatile cleaning agent that helps to break down grease and stains on dishes.
  • Borax (1 cup): Borax is a natural mineral that enhances the cleaning power of the detergent. It helps to soften water and boost the effectiveness of the other ingredients.
  • Citric Acid (1/2 cup): Citric acid provides a natural source of acidity, which aids in removing stains and residue. It also acts as a water softener.
  • Salt (1/2 cup): Salt helps prevent the build-up of limescale and adds an extra boost to the dishwasher’s cleaning capabilities.
  • Essential Oils (optional): For a pleasant scent and additional cleaning properties, consider adding a few drops of essential oils such as lemon, lavender, or tea tree oil.


Here is the step-by-step process to make a homemade dishwasher detergent:

  • Combine Dry Ingredients: In a mixing bowl, combine the baking soda, borax, citric acid, and salt. Ensure an even distribution of the ingredients.
  • Optional: Add Essential Oils: If you desire a specific fragrance for your dishwasher detergent, add a few drops of your chosen essential oils to the dry mixture. Stir well to incorporate the oils evenly.
  • Store in an Airtight Container: Transfer the mixture into an airtight container or a glass jar with a tightly sealed lid. This ensures that the detergent remains dry and effective.
  • Usage Instructions: When using your homemade dishwasher detergent, start with a tablespoon-sized scoop for each load. Place the detergent directly into the dishwasher’s detergent compartment.
  • Run a Rinse Cycle: Initially, run a rinse cycle with no dishes to allow the detergent to dissolve and distribute evenly in the dishwasher.
  • Observe Results: Assess the effectiveness of your DIY detergent by checking the cleanliness of your dishes after each wash. Adjust the quantity if needed.

Recipe 2

In the second recipe, it will be a homemade dishwasher detergent without borax. 

As many of you don’t like the smell of Borax, this alternative recipe is for you. Borax is a naturally occurring mineral but it is a bit sensitive as excessive consumption of borax can result in nausea and vomiting. So this is the recipe, especially without borax.

Here are the ingredients:

  • Washing soda (1 cup): As washing soda has antibacterial and hydrophilic properties, it is a great ingredient for washing dishes.
  • Baking Soda (1 cup): It is a versatile cleaning agent that helps to break down stains on dishes.
  • Citric acid (1 cup): Citric acid, derived from citrus fruits, is a natural cleaning agent that can be used as an alternative to dishwasher detergent.
  • Salt (1/2 cup): Salt always adds an extra boost to the dishwasher’s cleaning capabilities


Here is the step-by-step process of how to make Dishwasher Detergent:

  • Measure and mix the ingredients:  Start by measuring and mixing the ingredients in a bowl. Combine them in a bowl and mix them thoroughly. If you’d like to add a pleasant scent to your detergent, you can also add a few drops of your favorite essential oil at this stage.
  • Transfer and Store: Once your ingredients are well-mixed, transfer the detergent to airtight containers for storage. It’s important to keep your homemade detergent in a cool, dry place to prevent clumping.

To use your dishwasher detergent, simply add 1-2 tablespoons to your dishwasher’s detergent compartment before starting a wash cycle. For heavily soiled dishes or larger loads, you may need to adjust the amount accordingly.

Tips and Tricks for Dishwashing with Homemade Detergent

To ensure optimal results with your homemade dishwasher detergent, here are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind:

1. Hard Water Concerns: 

If you live in an area with hard water, you may find that your homemade detergent doesn’t perform as well as you’d like. In this case, you can add oxygen bleach to your recipe or use a natural rinse aid to help combat mineral buildup and improve cleaning performance.

2. Experiment with Essential Oils: 

Adding a few drops of essential oil to your detergent can give it a pleasant scent. Experiment with different oils to find a fragrance that you enjoy. Some popular options include lemon, lavender, and orange.

3. Pre-Rinse if Necessary:

If you’re dealing with particularly stubborn food residue or greasy dishes, you may need to pre-rinse them before placing them in the dishwasher. This can help ensure that your homemade detergent works effectively.

4. Adjust the Recipe: 

Feel free to be creative with this dishwasher detergent recipe. If you find that your homemade detergent is too harsh or leaves a residue on your dishes, you can reduce the amount of washing soda or citric acid in your recipe.

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