Homemade Detergent – clothes & dishes

detergent ingredients titleI went to visit my mom recently and she showed me an easy way to make my own laundry detergent and a way to convert it to use on your dishes, too. When I say easy, I mean opening boxes and dumping them together. There’s a bit of grating but that can be simplified with your food processor. This recipe is supposed to last you a year so that’s a big savings.

I’ve done a cost breakdown at the end of the post. Cheap. Ridiculously easy to make. And it works!

zote soap










Here’s the recipe:


55oz. washing soda (if you can’t find this, use 12 c borax and 16 c baking soda and leave out the washing soap)

64oz. (8 c.) baking soda

76 oz. borax

14.1 0z. (3 bars) grated or ground bar soap (Zote, Fels Naptha or Ivory – unwrap your soap and let it sit out a day to dry. Note: I didn’t do this and it still worked fine) A better option would be Dr. Bronner’s soap. It’s pure with no additives. And there are lots of different scents.


1. In a large container measure all ingredients mixing well. Keep sealed in a dry place. Use 1 Tablespoon (that’s it!) per normal load. 2 Tablespoons for large load or for more soiled clothing. This makes enough for a family of 4 for about a year.

For the dishes: mix 1 c. borax and 1 c. baking soda

Cost breakdown and sourcing:

washing soda and borax sold together for $17.99

baking soda $13.99 for a 5 lb bag (that breaks down to a cost of $11.20 for 64 oz)

zote soap $5.99

That’s makes a total of $35.18.  Not bad for an entire year!

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