Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Dishwasher Soap

I thought there must be a recipe out there in internet land for dishwasher soap if there were so many for laundry soap.  I found one on Newlyweds.  It was simple, so I thought I’d give it a try. 

You will need

1 cup borax ($5.39 per 76 oz, $5.39/76oz = $.07 x 4.5oz = $.32)

1 cup washing soda ($3.49 per 55oz, $3.49/55oz = $.06 x 10oz = $.63)

2 packets unsweetened lemonade Kool-Aid ($.29 per packet, $.29 x 2 = $.58)

¼ cup kosher salt ($2.99 per 48oz, $2.99/94.42 Tbsp = $.03 x 4 Tbsp = $.13)

Everything you'll need.
Mix and you’re ready to go.  I decided to store mine in an old honey jar.  I got a little fancy and affixed a pour spout to the top.  I got the idea from the Non-Consumer Advocate.  Cut the top off a salt box the size of a mason jar lid.  Looks good… Now how does it work?

I know, I'm so crafty with my sharpie.
I initially tried it by itself- I fill the wash part to the top, which is 2 Tbsp.  That worked just fine for a few loads, but by the third time around my dishes felt oddly powdery.  Then I tried it with a splash (about 2 Tbsp) of vinegar in the bottom of the dishwasher, and the issue was resolved.

Try It

$1.66 per about 2 ¼ cups, or $.09 per load.

Buy It

$4.49 per 45oz of Seventh Generation Free and Clear powder, or $.09 per load.


I rechecked my numbers and my scale several times.  I don’t understand how Seventh Generation is so cheap!  If indeed my numbers are correct (my breakdown of the 7th Gen. is $4.49/45oz = $.09 x .94oz = $.09), I will Buy It because it’s the SAME PRICE, and has less packaging due to the Kool-Aid packets.  Sheesh.

NEXT WEEK: Bib or nursing strap


  1. It's probably made from the same or substantially similar materials, which they get a massive discount on for buying in bulk (and whatever they substitute for kool-aid is probably a lot cheaper). They're essentially selling you the same products, they just already took the time to mix it. If you could find a nice cheaper alternative to the kool-aid, you might be able to cut your try it price down significantly

  2. Very true, Rich. It's the citric acid in the lemonade Kool-aid that could be substituted (come to think of it, I have some in an old cheese making kit in the kitchen!), but this is one that I'm quite willing to just let go. I run about a load a week of dishes, meaning I'm spending $.09/week on the stuff, and I'm okay with that! Laundry is a different animal entirely...