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Dish Liquid

Natural DIY Recipe


  • 1/4 cup Liquid Castile Soap 
  • 1 3/4 cups water  
  • 1 teaspoon Xanthan Gum

Optional but recommended:

  • 1 teaspoon Coconut Soap Flakes
  • 20-25 drops Essential Oil


  • Mixing Jug 
  • Measuring Spoons 
  • Stick Blender/ Blender 
  • Pump Bottle


  • 500ml


1.  Add the water, liquid Castile Soap & essential oils into your mixing jug. You don't have to add the Coconut Soap, but the small amount can add extra lather without it going too 'gluggy'. 
2.  Now you need to add the Xanthan gum, which can be tricky by hand (see FAQ below). The simplest way is to use an electric blender & start by creating a vortex (a whirlpool) then gently sprinkle the Xanthan Gum inside while you continue to mix. Keep blending until all the lumps are gone. 
3.  Once you have reached the consistency you are after store in a pump bottle & use. 


This dish liquid can take some time to get used to. It does not contain artificial foaming agents & is low in suds. It's most effective when pumped directly onto a wet sponge when you're washing a few dishes by hand.  If you're filling up a sink, it's better to use a Dish Powder or a soap bar (see related recipes).  



What is liquid Castile Soap?

This is a pure soap that is made from olive oil, water & lye (caustic soda). Depending on the type of lye you can make liquid or hard soap. 

Can I use the Dishwashing Liquid recipe as hand wash?

Absolutely! You can also experiment by adding other skin cleansing ingredients like Vitamin E, Shea Butter & Glycerine. If you have a foaming hand pump just leave out the Xanthan gum, you don't need to thicken it. 

What does Xanthan Gum do?

It has a few functions but the main one is to thicken liquid solutions naturally. You will find it as a thickening agent in shampoos, conditioners, detergents & a lot of cosmetics.

Can I mix Xanthan Gum by hand?

Yes, but you will need to be extremely patient as this can take some time. You are best off mixing the xanthan gum with vegetable glycerine  before adding to your mixture. This acts like a ‘roux’ (a mix corn flour & butter) used to thicken a soup, the butter helps spread the flour more evenly through the soup so there are less lumps. The glycerine works the same way with the xanthan gum however lumps still can form. So, the next step is to whisk the solution fast to create a vortex & then slowly add your glycerine gum mix. Then you need to keep whisking & whisking until lumps are gone.

What type of blender do I need?

A cheap stick blender will do the job. You could also use an upright blender, thermomix or whatever you have that will whisk fast. You don't need to have a separate blender for this & cooking, after all your making dishwashing liquid :-)

Is this safe for septic tanks?

The ingredients are mild, safe & biodegradable which should not affect the bacteria in septic tanks like harsh chemicals can.

Should I use distilled water?

Only if you are going to make a large batch that won't be used right away or your tap water is very hard. Not only should it be free from any contaminates but it has less hard minerals that react with soap. For a small batch that will be used within 4-6 weeks normal tap/boiled water should be fine. 

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