I saved money this week. And that makes me happy.
It makes Dang Dave Ramsey happy too.
While I was at the Fairhope Health Food Store, cringing over the prices, I reluctantly marked a few items off my list…
…castile soap …
Dang it. What else did I need….I know there was something else…why didn't I write it down…dangit Shaye, why do you always do this….you know you should write these things down….where did Georgia go?…Oh, okay, there she is pulling stuff off of shelves, perfect….what did I need again?….Oh great, now I have to go to the bathroom….Georgia, lets go find a bathroom….No public restroom?….Oh come on people, what's a pregnant woman to do…
…For Pete's sake….what was the last thing I needed?…
For the record, I decided it was a small piece of chocolate for Georgia and I to share, but I assure you, that was not what it actually was at the beginning.
In my mind, the chocolate would be enough to distract me from wetting my pants until we got home. It did work. Which my reputation is grateful for.
Regardless, I no more than got in the car when I realized what the mystery item was that I'd forgotten.
Dang, Cleatis. Let's blame this forgetfulness on the pregnancy. I find it's a good all-around excuse for most of my short comings.
At home, I knew I faced a dishwasher chuck-full of dirty dishes that needed to be run through pronto or they'd start smelling, ya know, like if something crawled up in our dishwasher and died.
But I also had to urinate so badly that the thought of pulling Georgia back out of the carseat and into the store to hunt for the illusive dishwashing detergent was more than I could bare. So instead, I drove home, nibbled my chocolate, and thought about all the different cleaning products I could pour into my dishwasher.
Luckily, after using the restroom, sweeeeeet relief, I returned to my senses and instead of dumping a bunch of products into the dishwasher hoping something would work, I looked up a quick recipe.
And not only did it work….but it worked wonderfully! As good as detergent! And it cost like a billionth of the price!
Okay. Maybe not a billionth. But heck, if I can eliminate having to purchase an extra cleaning product, I'll do it!
So here she is: Homemade Dishwasher Detergent.
Step One: In the soap compartment of your dishwasher, squeeze in TWO DROPS of dishwashing soap. Two drops people. I'm not joking around with this. Any more and you'll be cleaning suds off your kitchen floor for a week. Just don't go there. If you can't stop at two, don't start. Just go buy detergent. And then learn some self control.
Step Two: Throw a few tablespoons of baking sodainto the door, or into the bottom of the dishwasher, or into the soap compartment. It doesn't really matter, just throw some in there.
Step Three: Run the dishwasher like normal.
See? I told you it was easy. And cheap. And now you never have to buy dishwasher detergent again! Isn't it a wonderful thing?! I'm always on the hunt for products that have dual purposes…or triple purposes for that matter! My dishsoap is now my dishwasher detergent and also my floor cleaner And baking soda. Well, let's not even start that list. It's uses are never ending.
The bonus is that after running the dishwasher with the baking soda, it really lost that skanky smell it'd been boasting for a few weeks now. I'm glad to have that gone.
I hope you find this as exciting as I do. Although, I must admit, I'm still just crazy excited to have a dishwasher. It's not that I hated washing dishes by hand or anything before, but dang if it isn't fast and convenient to throw those dishes in there. An argument can be made both ways for sure – I'm sure there are hand-wash purists out there and die-hard-dishwasher-fans too. Frankly, I'd rather spent more time cooking or baking or pretty much doing anything… and less time washing. But that's just me. Don't hate me hand-washers.
Let's stick to the less controversial issues. Like cheap homemade dishwasher detergent. Every one can agree that's pretty rad.
Give it a try this weekend and let me know what you think of it.
Have a wonderful weekend, my friends!
Now go get that skanky smell out of your dishwasher.
I left for a few days to visit my parents and while I was gone my husband ran the dishwasher. I hadn’t bought any new detergent and was just using soap, which he apparently dumped in there, because he called me after having all the soap bubbles leak out! My daughter assures me it was hilarious! 🙂
…if I had a dishwasher. 🙁
I’m proud of you. That’s awesome. I love baking soda, too. And vinegar. I hardly use anything else to clean.
(Question…what brand of dish soap do you use? I usually use Joy, because my mother does. Do you think the brand makes a difference?)
That is awesome cool information to have.
You get pretty excited about “homemade”. Me too. So, maybe I’ll run a couple of things by you and see what you think.
Thinly peel lemons or other citrus and soak in a wide mouth jar that is 3/4 filled with plain white vinegar. Peel thinly so you don’t get much of the pith. Soak for 2-3 weeks, adding more peels as you get them. Then strain the peels out and put the liquid in a spray bottle. You can water down by 50% if you like.
I’ve also made homemade vinegar. And this site has a bunch of other stuff I want to try like homemade bar soap and laundry soap.
Here are two links. The first one is what I started (see the comments below the article). The second one has a lot more ingredients in it, mentions it as a foliar spray, but it also has the dilution rate.
I just filled a lidded bucket about 2/3 full of water and kept adding weeds and letting it stew for about a month. Then, I dipped out a yogurt container of the liquid and put that into another bucket of water, and used just a little to water at the base of the plants. Then, I did the regular watering to further dilute. It’s really stinky. If you don’t use something with a lid, you will just grow mosquitos. This is nitrogen rich and you can see the leaves turning a bit darker green in a few days. Use sparingly. Too much nitrogen can cause tomatoes to look quite lush, but not set fruit.
Share more homemade recipes if you have them. I love it. And the savings.
Thanks for all you do.
brenda from ar
A few years ago I was using a powder DW detergent, or at least stretching my store bought powder detergent with BS (and maybe a few other things that I cant remember). Then we moved and bought a new dishwasher.Ugh, the way the door closes on it makes powder hard to use, the little clasp wont clasp if there is any powder touching it. So I gave up and started buying liquid. I didnt know you could just “throw” BS in the bottom lol! Might have to re-try again 🙂
well I’ll be…that is pretty near brilliant! And CHEAP! I love it! Thanks for sharing!
First off, I love your blog! I have tried so many of your recipes, and since my husband is a once unhealthy cigarette smoking guy turned aspiring triathlon athlete on a health kick to boot, he has joined me in my ‘granola’ ways. I make a batch of lara bars every week, and they are his go to snack.
My question is simple. We have hard water here in the panhandle, and I was wondering if I could add vinegar and baking soda with two drops of liquid soap? I have to add the vinegar to combat the hard water, but I know that vinegar and BS create lots of bubbles, and work to clean out drains. Hmmmm….
But this is definitely worth a shot!
I use vinegar in the jet dry area of my dish washer and I throw baking soda in also. I haven’t had any problems and I’ve been doing this for a few months. Hope that helps
I put about half a cup of vinegar in a small cup in the bottom rack of the dishwasher and run it like usual – no bubbles and no streaks or spots.
I tried this and was surprised it worked so well! I was curious if you still use this method? and does it still work wonderfully? Thanks.
Shaye @ The Elliott Homestead
Lizzy, I do still use this method and have found it still works well!
Totally trying this. I have been trying a castile soap/water/lemon juice concoction… which kind of works, but also kind of leaves a powdery dust on my plastic items. It works great for hand washing though. BUT baking soda would be even more of a $$ savings. So when you say two drops of DISHWASHING soap, you mean like Dawn liquid – sits on the counter for your hands or sink dish washing – kind of soap right?
Yep, like Dawn.
Nancy Grace Bradlo
What kind of soap do you use? I don’t know if Im missing it or if you use a store bought one?
Seventh Generation, usually!
If you added a squeeze of lemon would it help with smells ? Or hinder the cleaning element?
lemon (or lemon peel, to be precise) works wonders for making glasses shine and the kitchen smells nice when opening the dishwasher….
Oh wow, great and easy recipe. Thanks for sharing
Family pitbulls maul too
Hi my name is Michaela Elliott and people call me Shay for short. I’m gonna try the recipe but I thought it was funny that we share a similar name. 🙂
I use a few drops of the NON-CONCENTRATED Dawn & splash of vinegar in the detergent compartment. I have been doing this for years. I will never buy dishwasher soap again. I am going to try the baking soda…I did not think of that. I love your blog!!
If all these recipes failed, I would keep returning just to read your humor. I love your communication style. You’re cracking me up over here. I can’t wait to start making this stuff. I’m especially excited about the dishwasher soap recipe. Oh man, I was already thinking, “Ima do 3 drops of dish soap.” Then you busted me with the self control line. So Glad I found your biscuit recipe on Pinterest cause it led me here. I looooove this kinda stuff. Thank you for giving me the laugh before bedtime. Thanks for sharing all this good stuff.
I found your site about a month ago and love it! Thanks for being so real in this hide-your-real-life-from-everyone world. Do you think borax would work as well as baking soda? I happen to have some on hand. I make my own laundry softener now too.
Might as well try it!
There is a study out there that says Borax is a hormone disruptor. It is especially bad for boys. I used to use Borax for cleaning but have since thrown it away. You may want to use it with caution. Just a FYI.
I’m gonna try this TODAY! in fact right soon! I better get this place cleaned up! I hope it works for me! 😉
One, you’re amazing. Two, I love you.
Thank you for keeping it real (and simple).
Dang! I wish I’d found this a couple months ago! I was using a borax-washing-soda-salt-lemon juice thing which really didn’t always work (“Mom, these dishes didn’t get clean, again!). When 12-year-old already-fixed-once dishwasher started spewing water like Old Faithful last week, I said enough. Now we are washing by hand. I shall keep this in mind for some future miracle, though.
Thanks for your great idea about homemade soap for the dishwasher. I’m cracking up over your fabulous sense of humor! I ran out of soap while on a cleaning binge (which is rare for me since I’m not the best homemaker to say the least.)
I love what Esther said on January 21st, lol, too funny. You crack us all up, thanks for having this blog. When life and/ or the job/business get me down, I come to your site for comedic relief. Love it.
I try to keep chemical-free around home as much as possible as you do and that’s why I simply love your method. It is so easy and cheaper than the commercial dishwashing products. Thank a lot for the valuable information.
Cleaners Roehampton Ltd.
Fantastic article! I am pregnant, too. It is a real nightmare sometimes. I love your recipe for homemade detergent. I am going to use it. Best regards!