I had a message from my awesome cousin (Becca!) this morning asking for the recipe of my Homemade Dishwasher Detergent. I decided since I will be emailing her the details, I might as well make it a blog post!
I have loved using my homemade detergent. I have done it for about a month and I am still having great luck. I do find I have to rinse my dishes a bit more (I used to just scrape 'em and stick 'em in, which really was not great for my dishwasher) but I am really happy with how it is working. There has been no weird residue on my dishes (this used to make me wonder what is actually doing down the hatch with my glass of ice water, especially when it would change the taste of my ice water!)
Homemade Dishwashing Detergent
1 Cup Washing Soda (*make sure it is WASHING soda, not baking soda)
1 Cup Borax
1 Cup Salt (Optional-it depends on how hard or soft your water is. I do not need to use the salt)
Essential Oils to scent (optional-you can get these at a health food store. Lemon, lavender, and tea tree are a few examples)
Dump all into a container and mix!
I use a jar and just fill it half with washing soda and half with borax.
I have a bottle of scented room spray I bought at my health food store that caught my eye because I love the smell of citrus, and the only ingredients in it is pure, natural grapefruit oils and essence. I just spray a bit of that into the jar before mixing. It smells so fresh and clean every time I open the lid. I love it!
I had to experiment with the amount of detergent per load. I found for my water type, that 4 Teaspoons is perfect, 2 in each compartment. (I use the little cup that comes with Children's Tylenol:) and fill it to the top, which measures 4 tsp.)
Here is the most important tip. Fill your rinse aid dispenser with vinegar! It is much cheaper than regular rinse aid and works great. My dishes come out a with a slight film if I forget this step.
Some of the big name brands of dishwashing detergents come with drying agents. You will not have these with your homemade detergent. Personally, I just want clean dishes. I do not mind having to grab a dish towel to dry them a bit. Spending less and knowing what is in it makes it worth it to me!
*you can find washing soda and borax in most grocery stores. The borax is usually in the laundry detergent aisle, and the washing soda is usually in the cleaners aisle.
Here is the original recipe.