Natural Homemaking: Homemade Dishwasher Detergent Tablets

Are you familiar with those little dishwasher tablets that are sold in all the stores?  (Here’s one example Cascade ActionPacs Dishwasher Detergent and here’s another Finish Powerball Tablets.)  They seem awfully handy and I’ve often wanted to buy them.  However, they also are really expensive and just squirting or shaking a little detergent into the receptacle isn’t that hard.  But then when we started this natural homemaking series on the blog and began thinking about all the store-bought cleaners that we use and dishwasher detergent came to mind.  So, we took to the internet and decided to make some of my own naturally.

There are many dishwasher detergent recipes on the internet but we wanted to try something of our own.  So we thought of the tablets decided to see if we could make those with all-natural ingredients!”  Here is what we came up with.


1 cup borax
1 cup washing soda
1/4 cup salt
2/3 cup lemon juice


1.  Mix the first three ingredients together in a bowl.

2.  Add the lemon juice and mix well.

3.  Put the mixture into an ice cube tray and pack hard.  Make sure you press it down really well into each ice cube spot and fill all the spaces.

4.  Let dry for 12-24 hours, preferably in the sun for as long as possible.  (You’ll notice that the tablets in the mason jar in my photo are a little crumbly, that is because I took them out about 4 hours after I made them…. lesson learned.  Let them dry longer.)

5.  Put in your dishwasher and run as usual.

If you have really hard water, then your glasses might come out with a bit of a film and some hard water stains.  The best thing to do is to rinse them really well after you take them out of the dishwasher.  You might try adding white vinegar to your “rinse aid” spot in the dishwasher should help this.