How to Make Your Own Dishwasher Detergent Tablets

TIME INVESTMENT: 7 minutes with store-bought detergent, 13 minutes if you make your own

I am a HUGE fan of the dishwasher detergent tablets because I am notorious for spilling the powdered stuff in the cracks of the dispenser’s hinge and can’t close it (grr!), but DANG they are expensive. I looked at Costco one time and was floored to find that the easy capsules I was using were two times the price of the powdered stuff. Whoops.

(Scroll down to skip my methods and cut to the chase)


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So I had to figure out how to do it. I personally am trying out this detergent by One Good Thing by Jillee, but knew that adding 3 drops of liquid detergent was too much for me (impatient alert), so I HAD to do something. But I figure, you are adding water to it anyway when it washes, why not make a paste? Then I found that Lady with a Rocker did something similar and executed it brilliantly, but she used muffin tins….and I am lazy and don’t want to invest the time in getting out the muffin tin and washing it, so I tried to see if I could do it in my hands (without touching the stuff*). I tried to streamline her steps a little bit because you know my philosophy, you can do anything in under 15 minutes.

So I poured from the sink just a little bit of water to the powdered detergent to make a paste and gave it a good stir (be careful not to add too much, adding water creates a chemical reaction that makes this bubble up).

I then cut up pieces of wax paper (I will reuse these over and over again) into squares. I like how press and seal sticks together with it much better, it just may be tough to reuse that stuff since it is sticky.

I put the suggested “serving size” of detergent into each square. Since I was using Jillee’s recipe, I also added my 3 drops of Blue Dawn to each square.

DIY Natural has store-bought detergent estimated at .14 cents per load and homemade  detergent at .05 per load. Tide action packs are .26 per load according to a MommySavers forum. So if you make your OWN actionpacs, you are saving 47% over storebought action pacs and 81% if you make your own.

Are you kidding me?! Those savings are INSANE!

I then bunched it up in a ball and wrapped the wax paper around it. Depending on your dispenser, you may want to push down on the ball to flatten it a bit so it fits in the dispenser. At first I did balls for mine and it didn’t fit!

It soon hardened and I just unwrapped one and put it in the dispenser. AWESOME!

Quick Instructions:

Cut 4 inch squares of wax paper

Add a little water to your powdered detergent and mix to combine

Put detergent in the center of the wax paper

Form the detergent into a ball in the wax paper

Wrap the wax paper around it

Wait until it hardens

*NOTE: I was careful not to touch stuff with my hands. Whenever I handle chemical stuff, I get a little paranoid.

Hey do you like what you read? Go to my right sidebar and connect with me. I keep posting my own baby steps to improving my life. And saving money=IMPROVEMENT!

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