DIY dishwasher powder

DIY dishwasher powder

In my last article, I mentioned how I was working on a homemade dishwasher powder recipe , so I could avoid buying little plastic bags of the dissolvable pods. Well, here it is!

My goal was to make a dishwasher powder that:

1) creates little to no waste – The dishwasher tabs I had been buying came in an unrecyclable bag and we would go through at least a bag per month.
2) Is easy on the environment and our health – I detest dishwasher powder full of artificial scents, artificial colours (I don’t see how that helps clean your dishes…) phosphates, bleach or any other undesirable ingredients.
3) Cost comparable – I wanted a homemade solution that was simple to make and easy on the pocket book.
Dish powder
Like many of my home made recipes this is a blend of several that I found online.

Here’s what I came up with:
1 ½ Cups Washing Soda  ($1.15)
1 ½ Cups Food-grade Citric acid  ($3.58)
½ cup Baking Soda ($.25)
½ cup Pickling salt ($.31)  
Total cost $5.29 for 48 loads or $.11/load

Directions: Measure all ingredients and mix together in a large bowl until there are no lumps. Pour into a 3 cup, or larger, jar or container with an air-tight seal.  Use 1Tbsp or less per load.
Tip: If you find you are getting a white residue on your dishes, it is likely the baking soda. Try using less powder per load or reduce the baking soda in your recipe. You may need to adjust the ratios of the ingredients depending on your machine and your water hardness. Dish powder ingredients

I’m pleased as punch with all three aspects of this recipe. It’s low waste (almost all the ingredients come in recyclable paper boxes – I’m still working on a better source of bulk citric acid that doesn't come in a bag), the ingredients are simple and effective and it’s less than half the price of the eco-friendly dish tabs I was buying.

The other bonus? All four ingredients have multiple other uses. Washing soda is a great laundry detergent booster, citric acid is used in canning and preserving, as well as dissolving hard water scale, baking soda is our go-to cleaning powder around the house, and pickling salt is great for canning and fermenting.  

What do you think? Would you give home-made dishwasher powder a try? Have you ever made you own? Comment below and join the conversation.