natural cleaning

so fresh and so clean clean – homemade dishwasher detergent

Part of our DIY Christmas gift round up was a gift from my sister. She beat me to the DIY punch and gifted me with homemade dishwasher detergent. It was perfect because it allowed me to test the do-it-yourself waters while I used the last of my store bought liquid dishwasher detergent.

It didn’t take long before I was out of my store bought soap and quickly running through what she had given me. I was so pleased with what she made me, I asked her to send me the recipe she used. Conveniently, I had all the ingredients needed, as they are key in so many other natural solutions around the house.

I followed the recipe for the most part, improvising along the way, in true Kristyn form. I swapped out the essential oil for my favorite, thieves oil, because of its antibacterial properties. Plus, I love the smell.

Buckle up, y’all. This recipe is where it’s at.


Homemade Dishwasher Detergent Recipe:

  • 2 cups Washing soda
  • 2 cups Borax
  • 1/2 cup Epsom salt
  • 1/2 cup vinegar
  • 15-20 drops of Thieves essential oil

The trifecta of washing soda, borax, and vinegar gives this mix powerful cleaning abilities that cuts through grease and disinfects. The addition of Epsom salt helps reduce the effects of hard water. It’s a perfect combination.

Start off by mixing up the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add the vinegar and essential oil mixing well until it starts to clump. This happens quick, so I moved rather swiftly to the next step.


Take the mix and fill each tray pressing it firmly into the mold so it clumps and stays together after drying.


That is where I hit a little turbulence. If you have two normal standard ice cube trays, you will be just fine. I thought I had some kicking around but was wrong. Using the standard trays will do the measuring for you, and you’ll have the perfect portion each time you run the washer. Measuring in stars is not quite as easy.


Like all good things, there is usually a waiting period. It definitely rings true here. 24 hours after you have filled your trays you can finally break the homemade detergent out of its mold.

It’s ok to laugh at my crazy assortment of soaps (it’s very Kristynesque). Having used the detergent my sister made, I had a good idea of how much to use. I’m also saving one detergent cube for portion comparison.


With the tray fiasco aside, I am digging this detergent. I might go as far as to say they kick the store bought brand’s tush. There is just one other adjustment to make, a new container solution. I got much more out of this recipe than I anticipated. No complaints there.

Since we have so much DIY going on this week (window cleaner, homemade dishwasher detergent, and another goody coming your way soon), it has been a happy, healthy, life changing week around here.

What kind of natural changes are you guys making? Anyone else going gaga over DIY cleaning?

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