4 eco-friendly recipes for making homemade, dishwasher detergents

by Mark Bennett

May 28, 2024


If you regularly use the dishwasher at home, you'll know just how expensive dishwasher tablets/detergent is.

That said, you can save money by making your own, all-natural dishwasher detergents which will be as effective as any commercial brands.

1 - Lemon dishwasher detergent

The ingredients for making a DIY, lemon-based detergent on a kitchen counter


To start, did you know that fresh lemons can be used to make a DIY dishwasher detergent? Proceed as follows:

Combine lemon juice with salt and vinegar to create a liquid detergent perfect for both washing your hands and for the dishwasher. Use 1 cup lemon juice, 1/2 cup salt and 1 cup of white vinegar.

Make sure you mix all the components carefully to produce a homogeneous, slightly gelatinous solution.

Once made, you can safely store this all-natural, DIY detergent in recycled containers (preferably made of glass) at room temperature for several months without it going off. 


2 - DIY tablets

Frozen, DIY detergent tablets

@leilavanora / Reddit

If you prefer your dishwasher detergent to be in tablet form, you can make your own using baking soda, a little liquid soap and distilled water. Use 1 cup baking soda, 1 tablespoon dishwashing liquid and 1/4 cup distilled water.

Combine all the ingredients with a few drops of essential oil (lemon or orange, for example) to provide a light scent. Once done, put the mixture into an ice cube tray (to form your tablets) and pop this into the freezer.

Once solid (typically after a few hours), your dishwasher tablets will be ready for use. You can safely store these tablets in a glass jar.

3 - Baking soda detergent

A glass jar filled with powdered detergent

@Ciaralauren93 / Reddit

Again using baking soda, you can make viscous dishwasher detergent.

Mix a cup of baking with half a cup of liquid Marseille soap in a 2:1 ratio (which will ensure the soap does not produce too much foam during use).

4 - Salt-based detergent

A bowl of powdered detergent and a bottle of essential oil

@kjodle / Reddit

Table salt and baking soda can also be combined to create an excellent, DIY detergent for your dishwasher: simply mix together one tablespoon of baking soda, one tablespoon of table salt and a teaspoon of regular dishwashing liquid.

After having mixed all these ingredients thoroughly, put the mixture into the dishwasher's detergent dispenser and start a regular wash.

And not only will these DIY, dishwasher detergent recipes save you money, they're eco-friendly too!.