DIY Best Natural Homemade Dish Detergent Powder Recipe Without Borax & Citric Acid

Most of us use some form of a chemical detergent for washing our dishes. Even in my home, I use the liquid detergent to hand-wash the dishes. I was talking to my grandma about the dish detergent products, they were using before all these chemical based dish washing soaps and liquids. In my grandma’s time, they were using natural products like soap nut or natural powders.

This recipe for dish detergent powder is natural and cleans really well. Most of the chemical detergents leave a thin film on the vessels, but this homemade dish washing powder does not leave a thin film like chemical based cleaning powders and it cleans well even with hard water.

It has got just two ingredients – shikakai and orange peels. I know most of you must be wondering about using shikakai for dish washing. But shikakai is a wonderful natural cleaner and cleans the vessels really well. I like to buy whole shikakai pods, sun dry and make my own powder. If you want to buy it from the shops, make sure to buy a powder that has only got shikakai powder as the only ingredient.

Orange peel is also a very good cleaner and naturally deodorizes the vessels. Because of the orange peels in the recipe, it smells really great too. The only thing that we have to be concerned when making this powder is you need bright sunlight for drying out the ingredients properly. If the ingredients are not sun dried before powdering, they will not powder very well. If the powder is not fine, it might leave small scratches on expensive kitchen wears.

To make this powder take the shikakai and orange peels and sun dry them well separately in bright sunlight till really crisp. Powder them separately, immediately after sun drying, as it helps to grind the powder finely. Once it is ground finely, mix it together well, you can also sieve the powder if it is not ground finely. Let it cool and then store in airtight bottles. To use, take a scouring pad and touch a little bit of the powder and use it to wash the dishes. This powder does not produce foam but cleans the vessels really well.

Best Natural Homemade Dish Detergent Powder Recipe

1. Take shikakai pods in a plate and sun dry till crisp in bright sunlight.

2. Powder it in mixer to get a fine powder and sieve it to get a fine powder.

3. Sun dry orange peels in sunlight till crisp.

4. Powder it finely in the mixer and sieve it to get a fine powder.

5. Mix both together, let it cool and then store it in airtight bottles away from moisture.


  • If using store bought shikakai powder, choose a powder that has only got shikakai as the only ingredient. Most of the shikakai powders have added ingredients in them, which will not be suitable cleaning dishes.
  • Try to buy organic oranges that are not waxed for making this powder.
  • This powder is only suitable for hand washing the dishes, not for dishwasher.
  • You can tweak the proportions of shikakai powder and orange peel powder to your liking.



  1. Kate Bristow
    October 17, 2014 / 1:57 pm

    I had read your blog it is very informative and nice.I got a lot of information about different topics, your pictures are great!Thanks for sharing ~!

  2. SV
    March 29, 2015 / 12:07 pm

    I was looking for natural dish wash recipe.I thank your grandma for sharing their knowledge and way of living.Their way life was nature friendly.I learned from my grandparents how to lead a simple life.I hate the commercial dish wash liquid and soap it makes my hand rough and dry.As you have mentioned it leaves a thin layer in the vessel.I am going to try this.

  3. Anonymous
    July 17, 2015 / 5:51 am

    your blog is very much useful for me. I am using your sikaikaai shampoo it is awesome.I am using it for my 2 daughters.Is there any fruit natural home made soap bars ?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      July 22, 2015 / 5:31 pm

      There are handmade soaps where you can add fruit extracts. I will try my best to post them sooner…

  4. scientist
    October 6, 2015 / 7:14 am

    Hi ramya ka, can we use this to wash baby feeding bottles? Thanks

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      October 9, 2015 / 4:09 am

      I would suggest you try reetha liquid for washing babies bottles, it is much easier to use for cleaning bottles. You can find the method in the blog…

    • Unknown
      October 11, 2016 / 4:15 pm

      Hi, great idea! i had a doubt is reetha toxic, can the foam cause any trouble if ingested even after rinsing the bottles properly.

  5. franklin arulanandasamy
    November 28, 2015 / 2:49 pm

    Ramya Can v use lemon skin/ peels instead of orange peels??I use more lemon. So it is easy for me to use lemon skin.Gracy

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      December 14, 2015 / 2:55 pm

      Hi Gracy, you can use lemon peels, they will work well too…

  6. Rubymol
    November 4, 2016 / 8:52 pm

    Hi Ramya, Is it good for cleaning oily or greasy vessels?

  7. Natasha
    December 11, 2016 / 9:43 am

    Hey Ramya, Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! I've been really searching for natural cleaning solutions and only found the western ways whose ingredients we don't get here. So I actually prayed, asking Jesus to show me a way so I can be a good steward to all He has given me and guess what?? I stumbled across your site! It's such a blessing and answer to prayer!

  8. Sumita Sharma
    January 15, 2017 / 11:00 am

    Hi, I read somewhere that a mix of shikakai, nagarmotha powder and multani mitti can also be used to make a dishwashing powder. If that is so, in what proportion should I mix them?

  9. Natasha
    March 19, 2017 / 10:55 am

    If we wash dishes used to cook non veg does the smell remain?

  10. Sai Kanakha Lakshmi
    April 24, 2017 / 8:03 am

    Hi Ramya, Many thanks for this homemade dish detergent for cleaning vessels. Please clarify my doubt. Can we use soap nut instead of orange peels?

    • Ramya Venkateshwaran
      April 24, 2017 / 3:43 pm

      Yes, you can uses soap nut powder too…

  11. Emily Lopez
    December 1, 2017 / 6:40 pm

    Thanks for sharing such a useful post.

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