The BEST Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe with 3 Ingredients

The BEST Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe with 3 Ingredients

I can’t even begin to quantify how much money you’ll save over the years by learning to make the BEST Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe with 3 Ingredients!

With our big family and with using cloth diapers with my babies, I’ve saved thousands, yes I said thousands of dollars using our homemade laundry soap and pre-treat

This is money that can go to your bottom line and help pay off debt and put more in savings!

Frankly, it’s just crazy how much the stores want for laundry products, when it costs just a few dollars to make your own!  Plus, you can skip out on all the toxins that are in most laundry soap products, even the ones that claim to be gentle!

3 ingredient laundry detergent


Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe

This recipe costs me less than $4 for 10 gallons of soap!  I’m quite sure that I’ve saved thousands of dollars from making this homemade laundry soap over the years!

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It’s safe, safe, SAFE

I’ve used this detergent with top loaders and front loaders. 

I’ve used this detergent with city sewer and septic without any problem. 

After talking to the gentlemen who clean our septic, they said they would recommend this detergent’s ingredients because it’s more pure than the detergents on the shelf and will break down better.

It’s a simple recipe that only takes a few minutes to make.  You’ll need:

  •  1 bar of Fels Naptha laundry soap (about $1)  If you have sensitive skin, you can use Castile soap or Goat’s milk soap as a substitute here
  • 1 cup Washing soda (NOT baking soda)
  • 1/2 cup Borax
  • Stainless steel pot
  • Old wooden spoon that will be used for this purpose only
  • 2-5 gallon buckets

Step 1:  Grate the bar of laundry soap using a grater or food processor.  I prefer to use a stainless steel grater, and I keep a separate pot for this purpose only.

grating bar soap

Step 2:  Bring the soap savings and 1/2 the pot filled with water to a boil, careful to not boil over.  Once it boils, reduce heat to low and cook until soap shavings are melted, about 20 minutes.  I like to keep the exhaust fan on during this process.

soap flakes in pot with water

soap flakes cooking in pot

Step 3:  Pour the liquid soap into the first 5 gallon bucket, then add the borax and washing soda.  Careful not to inhale the borax or washing soda.

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5 gallon bucket with homemade detergent

Step 4:  Fill the rest of 5 gallon bucket with hot water and stir.  Let sit overnight.

Step 5:  Solution will be goopy after sitting overnight.  Pour 1/2 of the solution in the second 5-gallon bucket so that both buckets are 1/2 full.  Now fill both buckets with hot water and stir, using a wire whip is helpful.

Step 6:  I use 1/3 cup per load, 1/2 cup if super dirty.

Now you can go hang your laundry out on the line! 

pretreat laundry ingredients

DIY Pre-Treat Spray Recipe

Here’s what you’ll need…

-2 parts hydrogen peroxide

-1 part Dawn dishwashing liquid

-1/4 part baking soda

-Old spray bottle

Simply mix and use!


By using these DIY laundry products, you will easily save hundred of dollars every year!

PLUS, you will not be exposing yourself and your family to harmful toxins and perfumes that are in most commercial brands!



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This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. Kim Bradford

    Great advice and info for sustainable living. I look forward to exploring more of your articles and using more of your recipes.

    1. Kelly

      Hey Kim, thanks for being here!

  2. Kaila Casteel

    Can you add essential oils to make the clothing smell better? I prefer lavender scented bedding to help my husband and I sleep. If not essential oils, then what other methods to scent the laundry soap?

    1. Kelly

      Hi Kaila, YES, you can absolutely add essential oils to your laundry soap! Much of the fragrance of the detergent lies in the soap that’s used, keep that in mind when choosing a laundry soap. Good luck and thanks for reading!

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