Make Your Own Laundry Soap with Soap Nuts

The really fabulous thing about using soap nuts, is that you don’t really have to make your own laundry soap with them. The soap nuts do all the work for you! I’ve been using soap nuts off and on for over a year now in my laundry routine and have really been satisfied with how they get my laundry clean.

What are Soap Nuts?

Soap nuts are the dried fruit that come from the Soap Berry tree, and they contain saponin which acts as a natural detergent. I have found them to work just as well if not better in cleaning my laundry than conventional detergents do.

How to Use Soap Nuts

  1. Place 8-9 soap nuts (without the seeds in them) in the small bag that comes with your order.
  2. Place the bag in your washing machine with your dirty laundry, and run your cycle as normal.
  3. Reuse the bag to wash clothes until the seeds start falling apart and look a little gray.

A bag of 5-8 nuts usually lasts me through a month or more of washes.  I prefer this method because it isn’t any extra work, and the nuts seem to last longer than if I use them to make a liquid concentrate. However, a liquid concentrate has multiple uses other than just as a laundry detergent, so I’m going to show you how to make that.

How to Make Your Own Liquid Laundry Soap with Soap Nuts

If you’re really feeling domestic, you can actually use the soap nuts to make a liquid that you can use for various cleaning purposes as well as for laundry.


  1. Place bag of 8 soap nuts (without the seeds) in 4-5 cups of water in a pot on the stove.
  2. Bring water and soap nuts to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat and simmer for about 20 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and let cool.
  5. After it has cooled, remove the bag and use your hand to squeeze the excess soap out of the bag. This creates lots of suds.
  6. Rinse the bag into the pot and squeeze again. Repeat this process until the bag no longer creates suds.
Now you have a concentrated amount of liquid. Depending on how concentrated it is, you can use 3-5 tablespoons for a load of laundry.
This can also be used as a surface cleaner, soap nuts shampoo and body wash, and for multiple other uses. It’s just liquid soap, so the possibilities are endless!  Note: Make sure that you refrigerate your liquid, as it will spoil.

While the liquid does have its benefits of being able to use it for more than just laundry, I prefer to just use straight soap nuts in my wash because they seem to last longer, which means I’m saving money!

Where to Buy Soap Nuts

Soap Nuts can usually only be found online, and I have found the best price to be on Amazon. Wherever you buy Soap Nuts from, make sure you are getting the ones that do not contain seeds. With Soap Nuts, you always pay based on weight, and the seeds are the heaviest. The seeds cannot and should not be used when cleaning laundry, as they can stain clothing.

But Do They Really Work?

Yes they do! And I’ve found that my laundry comes out cleaner and fresher than when I use a conventional detergent. They are so easy to use, too! I love that I am using something that is safe for my kids, the environment and is inexpensive.

Cost Break-Down

So there you have it! You can either make your own laundry soap with soap nuts, or let them do all the work for you. Soap Nuts are natural, eco-friendly and easy to use! Have you ever used Soap Nuts before?


By |2013-12-04T05:13:19+00:00August 27th, 2012|Frugal Living, Organic and Green Living|7 Comments

About the Author:

I'm a former sweet-tooth turned health-nut. After a difficult loss of a first pregnancy and having a second child with a heart condition, I became obsessed with health and wellness. I revamped our entire family's lifestyle, dropped seven pant sizes, and created a website where I could share our story and help support people wanting to make small changes day by day in order to live well. I also support my family by the work that I do here through advertising content, affiliates, and partnership/consultant links within content. When you click and/or order, it puts food on our table. Thanks for all your support, and may you live well and thrive!


  1. Krista August 27, 2012 at 11:04 am - Reply

    I haven’t tried it yet but I was told to store my used soap nuts in a mason jar until full. Pour in boiling water and let sit over night. Strain through cheesecloth in the morning for your liquid soap nuts.

  2. Crystal Collins September 4, 2012 at 10:34 am - Reply

    Here is the page with all the homemade laundry detergent posts and an FAQ:

  3. Ramya January 18, 2013 at 5:10 am - Reply

    Soapnuts are very easily available here in Bangalore (India).
    But don’t you have to hunt for the bag and get it out of the machine before the last rinse?? How do you deal with that?

    • chukka October 6, 2016 at 10:53 pm - Reply

      Hi Ramya,
      I am from India too. I usually prepare the liquid form and add a teaspoon of citric acid for the sake of preservation. That lasts me for about 4 weeks. I also refrigerate the liquid. This is the best way to use and is also hassle free.

  4. Angela Vincent January 20, 2015 at 7:12 am - Reply

    I’ve been using soapnuts for a couple of years now and love them. Like you, I generally just use the nuts as they are, though I’ve made liquid, too. But my last big bag had a lot of fragments in the bottom that would leak out of the little bag in the machine, so I’m going to use those to make my next batch of liquid. Waste not, want not!

  5. Sabrina S. February 19, 2015 at 11:02 am - Reply

    Crystal, I wanted to give you an source for soap nuts- $6 for ONE POUND of soap nuts!!! (+shipping!) I have used only theirs, so I can’t compare the quality to other sources. They are an excellent source for herbs, spices, and all sorts of organic products.

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