As I have mentioned in a previous post, I clean my dishwashing machine about once a month to avoid dirty residue on dishes. Many bloggers also recommend running a cycle with baking soda. I didn't like having to run two cycles without dishes, so when I came across how to clean your dishwasher with a baking-soda bomb on Pinterest, I thought I would give it a try. This way I can clean my dishwasher with both vinegar and baking soda in one cycle. This project is super easy, inexpensive and completely natural.
2 cups baking soda
3 TBS hydrogen peroxide
15-20 drops essential oil (I used lemon)
Combine the ingredients and mix together until it has the consistency of wet sand.
Use an ice cream scooper (or large spoon) to mold the baking soda bombs. Gently release them onto a piece of parchment paper.
Let them dry overnight and they are ready to use. I store mine in some recycled glass jars.
When you are ready to clean your dishwasher, simply place 2 cups of vinegar on the top rack of your dishwasher as described in this post and then add one baking soda dishwashing bomb on the bottom rack. Run one dishwashing cycle (without any dishes) and then your dishwasher should be completely sparkling clean and ready to use, leaving no dirty residue on your dishes.
The reason this combination works so well is because, as I have mentioned before, white vinegar is a great cleaning agent as it breaks down bacteria and dirt while also killing mold and mildew. Baking soda neutralizes odors and is a gentle scouring agent. Likewise, hydrogen peroxide is antibacterial and antifungal and is also a great bleaching agent. The essential oil gives a fresh scent and lemon is of course known to also kill bacteria. Together these non-toxic cleaning agents clean super well.