DIY Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid

Here's a DIY natural dishwasher rinse aid recipe you can use to help get your dishes sparkling and extra clean without any toxins. It's very simple – you only need two ingredients – hydrogen peroxide or distilled white vinegar and citric acid.

DIY Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid Recipe

Why Make Your Own Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid?

It's Cheaper

Making your own products from home is cheaper, especially when you buy the supplies in bulk. When you buy products from the stores, unless you're buying a concentrate, you're paying for mostly water!

It's Eco-Friendly

Many ingredients in store-made dishwashing, cleaning, laundry, bath body and beauty products contain ingredients that are toxic and even fatal to aquatic life. They harm our delicate ecosystems and are polluting the planet. Also, when you buy the ingredients in bulk and reuse your bottles and containers, you produce less trash and waste, which is better for our planet.

It's Healthier

Regular store-made dishwashing rinse aids and detergents contain numerous toxins that also harm our health, and you can read more about that below!

DIY Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid with Hydrogen Peroxide or Distilled White Vinegar, Citric Acid and Lemon Juice

Toxins in Dishwasher Rinse Aids

Sodium Hypoclorite

Also known as bleach. Ingestion can cause burns to the mouth and throat, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Think but how many toddlers have ingested dishwashing detergent!

It is also corrosive and may irritate the skin and cause burns. It is a lung irritant when inhaled and it aggravates asthma and allergies. It’s also very toxic to aquatic life (source).

Artificial Fragrances

I’ve written about the dangers of artificial fragrances many times here on the blog! Artificial fragrances can trigger asthma attacks, worsen allergies, and cause inflammation in the sinuses that can lead to more frequent colds and respiratory infections. That’s why I prefer to scent my homemade products with essential oils.

Fake fragrances disperse particles of formaldehyde and phthalates (thy-lates) into the air. Phthalates are small particles of plastic that are used to bind the artificial fragrance molecules together. We then breathe in those tiny particles of plastic and they get into our nose and lungs – yuck!

Artificial Dyes

Dyes do nothing to make the dishwasher detergent perform better so they are totally unnecessary. The FDA actually now prohibits the use of dyes in cosmetics because it causes cancer in rats. Yet they can get all over our dishes and on our clothes? It also caused thyroid tumors to grow in rodents in other studies. Dyes are considered toxic by the (source).

Learn About the Ingredients in this Dishwasher Rinse Aid

Hydrogen Peroxide

This is a safe and effective disinfectant and alternative option to chlorine bleach. Its molecules are made of two hydrogen and two oxygen atoms (H2O2) that decompose after use back into oxygen and hydrogen, so it’s completely green and nontoxic, and is colorless and odorless to boot. It must be stored in a dark container or cabinet out of direct sunlight as sunlight will break it back down into oxygen and hydrogen.

For household cleaning, the 3% solution is an effective disinfectant if left on for 30 minutes or more. It can also be used as a laundry and upholstery stain remover for light or white items. I wouldn’t use it on colored items as it will remove the color like bleach does.

Another option to get stronger disinfecting power from your hydrogen peroxide is to use the 12% solution, which you can find here.

I have a whole post I wrote just about hydrogen peroxide – see it here!

White Distilled Vinegar

Vinegar is completely safe and a very effective window, all purpose cleaner, and sanitizer due to its acidic nature.But, we all know vinegar kinda stinks. So you can make some citrus infused vinegar (see my tutorial on that here) to lessen the scent, or add your choice of lovely smelling essential oils to it.

Essential Oils

Essential oils are wonderful to use in cleaners. They add extra cleaning and germ fighting power, and also smell wonderful, making the cleaning experience more enjoyable! In my family, we also use them for our health. I only use Young Living Essential Oils as I’ve found them to be the best and most effective ones on the market. They have starter kits that make using oils for your health easier to learn about and have success with! Learn more about their oils here.

Lemon essential oil in particular is known for lifting stuck on particles off – like a natural goo-gone.


DIY Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid

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A recipe for a simple natural dishwashing rinse aid to make sure your dishes get sparkling clean!

  • Author: Sara McFall




Pour the hydrogen peroxide or distilled white vinegar into the squeeze bottle. All the Citric Acid and then the essential oils or lemon juice. Gently swish the solution around until it is well combined. Fill your dishwasher rinse aid compartment with the solution and depending on your washer and how often you use it, it should last for a weeks to a month.


You can find citric acid in the same section as the canning supplies, or just purchase through my link here to get on Amazon.

Would You Rather Buy than Make?

If you'd rather buy than make your own natural dishwasher rinse aid, that's fine, too! Here's what I love and can recommend:


  1. Thanks so much for sharing this 🙂 I had been looking for a natural dishwasher rinse for a while, so I’m going to try to make this tonight – wish me luck hehe

  2. Thanks for sharing these recipes. I will definitely try. Enough of all these chemicals everywhere. Let’s move to the natural to live long and healthy. Thank u so much.
    Wish me luck as I go into the natural

  3. Just made the rinse recipe with 1.5T citric acid & 1C 3% hydrogen peroxide. It’s slightly less viscous than our usual store-bought rinse aid, but the ingredients made sense as to their purpose and it is very reminiscent of what comes out of that store-bought squeeze bottle! Thanks a million for the recipe. We live in a place with very hard water and need a rinse aid for the dishwasher.

    Question: can I sub a pantry item for the citric acid (AKA Ball Fruit Fresh Produce Protector)? Its ingredients are dextrose, ascorbic acid, citric acid, and silicon dioxide. No sulfites. I just hate buying the citric acid separate when I have something at the house that serves another purpose and is similar in composition…Thoughts?

    1. I looked up a substitute for citric acid and every website I went to said lemon juice. Citric acid is too expensive for me.

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