My Favorite Dishwasher Detergent (Surprise, It’s a Tablet!)

updated May 1, 2019
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

After years of hand-washing the dishes, I finally live in an apartment with a dishwasher. (Cue choirs of angels singing.) I tried a few dishwasher detergents, but none made me as pleased as the one I now buy in bulk. It’s eco-friendly, totally easy to use, and cleans the crustiest, un-rinsed dishes with aplomb.

I’m talking about Ecover’s Automatic Dishwashing Tablets. Here’s what I love about them.

(Image credit: Cambria Bold)

1. They’re individual tablets.

Honestly, I feel like I could never get the measurement for powdered or liquid detergents right. I either used too much and got filmy dishes, or used too little and then they didn’t get clean! The tablet gets it just right. I love being able to just pop one in the soap dispenser.

2. They’re phosphate-free.

Ecover makes their detergent, like all their products, with plant-based, mineral ingredients that are biodegradable and phosphate-free. (They disclose all their ingredients on their website, too.)

3. They have practically no discernible scent.

I’ve used both the fragrance-free and the citrus-scented version, shown in the photos here. Obviously the fragrance-free version leaves behind no discernible scent, but I find the citrus version so mild that it hardly makes a difference to me which one I use. The most important thing is that I don’t smell the detergent on the dishes after a cycle (I don’t want that scent mixing with food aromas!), and I don’t here.

(Image credit: Cambria Bold)

4. I can order them in bulk.

I can get six boxes with 25 tablets in each one for $30 on Amazon. Plus, they’re often eligible for the Subscribe & Save program, so I can save five percent off the order.

5. They work exceptionally well.

This is obviously the most important point. What good is a dishwasher detergent if it doesn’t clean? I’ve been really happy with the cleaning power of this little tablet. I’m not much for rinsing dishes before I put them in, so my dishwasher detergent has a lot of work to do. With only a couple exceptions that I think had more to do with my poor loading than with the detergent, all dishes, glasses, and pots, and pans have come out very clean — no additional scrubbing required! I’ve heard that filling the pre-wash dispenser with vinegar in combination with these tablets provides an even better clean. I haven’t tried that yet, but I’m going to.

Have you tried these Ecover tablets? What are your thoughts? And of course, if you have another dishwasher detergent you swear by, do tell!