And then I thought, why not try to make some homemade dishwasher detergent instead? That way I'll actually know for sure which ingredients are being used.
After a quick Google search, I came across this very helpful review of several different DIY detergent recipes. And so this week, I tried making the winning concoction.
I did hit a few snags along the way, as I couldn't locate two of the ingredients at my usual grocery store. Rather than washing soda, I ended up using plain old baking soda. And since the store didn't carry packets of unsweetened lemonade mix, I picked up lemon-lime packets instead. My recipe ended up like this:
- 1 cup borax*
- 1 cup baking soda
- 1/2 cup kosher salt
- 5 packets lemon-lime Kool-Aid drink mix
To determine for myself whether this detergent worked as effectively as Cascade(ing chemicals down the drain), I put our glass blender container, which had been sitting in the fridge for a few days with a green smoothie, in the dishwasher without rinsing. With just 1-2 tablespoons of dishwasher detergent, it came out surprisingly clean! (We use closer to 2 tablespoons, as we have really hard water.)
The cost for the ingredients was about $15.00, and since you only use a small amount each time, it is quite cost effective. Besides the Kool-Aid packets, which I'll need to purchase again when I make more, I expect the borax, soda, and salt will make several more batches.
Give it a try sometime, and let me know what you think!