This is a post all about my homemade recipe for grease-fighting liquid dish soap! I have a confession to make, even though I said I had replaced all of our household cleaners with our own homemade there was one I just hadn’t tackled yet: Liquid Dish Soap. So, what have I been using to wash our dishes by hand with in the meanwhile? Well, I’ve literally just been dumping some of my homemade dry Dishwasher Detergent in the sink and scrubbing with everything I’ve got. It was actually working all right but I really wanted something for “real” that would have some “soapiness” to it etc. So, I got to searching and experimenting and FINALLY I landed on one that works great for us!
My first and foremost desire for liquid dish soap was a gelatinous consistency, I saw lots of posts online where they added glycerin and I just didn’t want to have to buy an ingredient I wouldn’t be using anywhere else. MOST liquid dish soap recipes online used grated bar soap and that was a little more up my ally as we grate half a bar whenever we make our laundry detergent. I found recipes that used borax and recipes that used super washing soda. I also found recipes that used vinegar. ALL are ingredients I keep on hand. Some of them used essential oils and they all made note that you certainly don’t need essential oils, they’re really just there to make it smell nice and that’s true of my recipe as well.
I have been hesitant to share my recipe here as it also includes two cups of our tap water and our tap water really can’t be found anywhere else. We have an old well and no water softener so, here’s the truth, you are most likely going to need to adjust the amounts of at least a couple of the ingredients to work with your water or the recipe will either end up really thick or really watery. So, here’s the recipe that I finally ended up with: its silky, its soapy, its thick enough to kinda stick without gumming up the bottle and, most importantly, IT WORKS.
2 cups water
1/2 cup grated bar soap
1/2 cup liquid castile soap (what I use)
1 tablespoon super washing soda (what I use)
1 tablespoon borax (what I use)
30 drops essential oil of your choice or none at all
Bring the water nearly to a boil and stir in everything except the essential oils, keep stiring until it all dissolves (it will become very clear) and allow to cool a little before adding in your chosen oils. Bottle and use as you like for washing dishes. I LOVE my little soap dispenser I purchased from Amazon that fits mason jars!
Again – you really don’t need the essential oils (especially if you use a scented bar soap or scented castile soap) but I like a combo of peppermint and tea tree essential oils. I saw a post online where they used nothing but lavender oil in their dish soap recipe but I kinda prefer that for other things like my body butter and my perfume. If its too thick after a day just add a little water and shake it up or, if its not thick enough, you can always heat it up again and add a little more grated bar soap. A big factor here is the grated bar soap that you use, the first recipe I saw similar to this one only called for 1/4 cup and, as you can see, I use a whole cup for this recipe but it may be the castile bar soap that I use or, as I mentioned earlier, our tap water.
This soap works great and I am so happy to have something specific when I hand wash some of our big pots now!