Simple Living

Homemade Laundry Detergent

June 9, 2013

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I tend to be sensitive to so many of the chemicals in a lot of household cleaners. That includes many laundry detergents. Because of concerns over toxicity, I ditched regular laundry detergent a couple of years ago and opted for a safer and healthier alternative….soap nuts. Now, let me say that I really do like soap nuts a lot. For me, they work well.  But I had one concern about continuing to use soap nuts.

Unfortunately, as great as soap nuts are for us, they have to be imported….from the Himalayan mountains. Definitely not so local, and not so convenient to have to order these online when running low. So I wondered if there was some way to bring my laundry detergent back to the US and not have to worry about ordering them.

This recipe will make enough for 32-64 loads, depending on how many tablespoons of the detergent you use.

It is safe to use with HE Machines.

I love to make several batches of this at the same time because it lasts a really long time that way. All of the ingredients for this can be found at many local grocery stores. Washing soda can usually be found in the laundry aisle. Many grocery stores carry Castille soap like Dr. Bronners….but if the cost is an issue, you can also use Fels Naptha soap (found in the laundry aisle) or even Ivory.

The best part about this detergent recipe is that it is incredibly inexpensive! Literally pennies per load….and even less expensive than soap nuts, which are cheaper than conventional detergent.

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Servings 32 -64 loads


  • 1 1/2 cups Borax NOT boric acid….different thing completely!
  • 1 cup washing soda
  • 1 cup baking soda
  • 1 cup grated Castille bar soap great way to add some scent!


  • Mix all ingredients in a lidded container.
  • Use 1 tbsp for a regular load and 2 tbsp for a heavily soiled load.