DIY detergent made with orange peels and salt: easy to make and all-natural, you'll find loads of uses for it in your home

by Mark Bennett

April 23, 2024

DIY detergent made with orange peels and salt

Multi-purpose detergents for all types of surfaces: there are many brands on the market, and the choice is not always easy. But you are looking for a non-commercial, all-natural product that is eco-friendly. Well, you can try making your own using just orange peels and salt - keep reading to find out more:

What you need to make a homemade detergent


Very few ingredients needed to do this, namely:

  • 1 liter of water;
  • Orange peels: you need the peels from at least 5 oranges. Alternatively, you can also use other citrus fruits - but if they are smaller (such as mandarins or limes), then you will need to use the peels of at least 7 of them;
  • Two tablespoons of table salt;
  • One tablespoon of baking soda. This ingredient is not always added and there are recipes that do not include it. You can opt to leave it out, but it's not recommended;
  • A cup (approximately 125 ml) of white vinegar: use alcohol, wine or apple vinegar (and not "brown" vinegars);
  • 300 ml of dishwashing liquid.

As for equipment, you will need:

  • A pot
  • A spoon
  • A ladle
  • A sieve for filtering
  • A funnel
  • A 1.5 liter glass bottle (a plastic bottle will also do if you don't have a glass one)


How to make a homemade detergent with citrus peels

Detergent made with boiled orange peels

Video tutorial via Phnom Penh Real Estate/YouTube

The preparation process is very simple, and can be done in about 15 minutes. Here's how to proceed:

  • Bring the water to the boil in a pot on the stove;
  • Turn the heat down to low and add the citrus peels;
  • Add the salt and mix well until it dissolves completely;
  • Add the baking soda (optionally) and mix again;
  • Continue to simmer the mixture until the water changes color and the peels soften. When the water is yellowish and "murky", you can turn off the heat. This takes about 3-5 minutes overall;
  • Remove the pot from the stove and let it cool down;
  • Filter the mix, removing all the peels;
  • Add the vinegar and mix well;
  • Add dishwashing liquid to the mixture. Stir delicately so you don't produce foam.

At this point, you have two options: the product you have just prepared is very concentrated, and will fill a 1.5 liter container. You can dilute it immediately or later, as you use it. Dilute one part of the detergent with 2 parts water. 

If you decide to dilute the detergent immediately, add another 1.5 liters of water, mix well, and pour everything into two or three bottles. You could fill a spray bottle to use immediately, and keep the other bottles (with their lids tightly sealed) as refills.

Extra tips

As for use, use this homemade detergent like any other: spray onto cleaning cloths and sponges, or directly onto the surfaces to be cleaned. It can be used on kitchen shelves, stoves, ovens, microwaves, bathroom fixtures, and even the floors!

If you want to give your detergent a more intense aroma, you can add 10-15 drops of lemon or sweet orange essential oil. Alternatively you could create a "fresh" aroma by adding mint, lavender or eucalyptus essential oil.

This detergent will be good for about a month, so you can try making a small amount first to see if it suits your needs! Are you now ready to make a DIY detergent?