Homemade Automatic Dishwasher Soap


We experiment a lot with different ways to make commonly used household items more cost effectively, more green & environmentally friendly.  Automatic dishwasher detergent is one of the successful and one of the easier things we have tried.  One of the key ingredients to this detergent is our own homemade coconut oil based soap (recipe will be coming soon).


  • 1 bar of your favorite vegan soap (we use our own homemade coconut oil soap)
  • 3 quarts water
  • 2 cups Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
  • 2 cups 20 Mule Team Borax
  • 1 cup Arm & Hammer Baking Soda
  • 30 – 40 drops of your favorite essential oil (we use either lavender, citrus, or peppermint)


Using a large hole grater, grate the bar of soap.  Using a large stock pot, add the 3 quarts of water and bring to boil.  Add the grated soap and stir until completely dissolved.  Remove from heat and add all other ingredients.  Immediately blend with a stick immersion blender.  The soap will begin to bubble and expand.  This is why you want a large stock pot, to make sure it doesn’t bubble over (I learned from harsh experience).  I usually do the blending in the sink just in case.  Allow the soap to completely cool in the sink and then thoroughly blend it one more time with the stick immersion blender.  It is now ready to use.  We typically use a funnel and put it in an old dishwasher soap container we saved.  It makes quite a bit of soap so you might have some extra to store.

This has consistently gotten our dishes very clean.  And the rinse cycle of the dishwasher makes sure all of the soap is thoroughly rinsed so there is no residue.  We have been using this recipe for over a year with great results.


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