Last Updated: December 29, 2022

7 best fragrance-free dish soaps & dishwasher detergents.

WRITTEN BY Grove Collaborative • 13 min read

How much thought does the average person actually put into their dish soap? For many, it ends at whether it cuts the grease and cleans the plates. We at Grove are conscientious about the ingredients in everything we carry. Much thought goes into the stuff we use to do our dishes, so we'd be remiss if we didn't discuss fragrance-free dish soaps.

Yes, we want our dish soap to cut through the mess. So we go for the most potent food-busting formula out there. But we want more. We want what's right for us—and for us that means letting go of harsh, synthetic chemicals and perfumes.

We choose fragrance-free dish soaps for many reasons. Fragrance-free usually means more natural. Perfumes are often harsh on sensitive skin. Whatever the reason, there are many fragrance-free and unscented dish soaps out there to choose from, and we carry some of the best. Take a look below. Note: Some dish soaps below have scented and unscented varieties so make sure to click through to pick the fragrance-free option.

This list of products was determined by ratings and reviews from Grove members.

1. Seventh Generation Dish Soap

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Seventh Generation Liquid Dish Soap cuts through grease and removes dried-on food from your dishes without doing damage to your hands. This plant-powered biodegradable formula contains plant-derived cleaning agents for effective dishwashing that’s septic-safe. Plus, this dish soap is dye-free, phosphate-free, and triclosan-free.

Choose from a …

19 oz
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2. Grove Co. Ultimate Dish Soap Refill

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A high performance liquid dish soap proven to remove 48-hour stuck-on food.* Crafted to be sustainably powerful for a healthy home and planet.

Our Ultimate Dish Soap refill cuts grease in seconds. Its high-performance formula also removes 48-hr stuck on food and greasy messes, leaving 1,000+ dishes sparkling …
16 oz
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3. Seventh Generation Auto Dish Pack (45ct) & Rinse Aid Set

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If every household in the U.S. substituted just one pouch of these concentrated, plant-based packs instead of the traditional petroleum-based ingredient packs, we could save 9,700 barrels of oil. That's enough to heat and cool 560 U.S. homes for a year! Get sparkling, spot-free dishes without pre-washing. This enzyme-rich formula busts through …
1 x 45 count bag - 1 x 8 Oz bottle
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4. Grove Co. Pure Power Dishwasher Detergent Packs - Multiple Scents

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Extra strength dishwashing soap packs formulated with rinse aid to eliminate 48-hour baked-on food and stains from dirty dishes.

    Our Pure Power Dishwasher Detergent Packs performs just as well as a leading national brand in stain removal.* Just pop one pack in your dishwasher …

18 packs
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5. Seventh Generation Dishwasher Detergent Powder

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No one likes doing the dishes, that’s probably why dishwashers were invented in the first place. This Seventh Generation Auto Dish Powder also makes being on dish duty a breeze by removing stuck-on food and grease so you don’t have to scrub by hand. This dish soap is biodegradable, chlorine-free, bleach-free, phosphate-free, dye-free, and …

45 Oz
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6. Seventh Generation Dishwasher Detergent Gel Soap

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Looking for a dishwashing gel free of chlorine, phosphates, and other harmful chemicals? Look no further — this Seventh Generation Auto Dish Gel is the perfect choice for households with kids, pets, or anyone wanting to put their health first. It’s also free of dyes and fragrances, and it uses essential oils and botanical extracts for a naturally …

42 Oz
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7. Grove Co. Total Clean Dishwasher Detergent Packs

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These Grove Co. Total Clean Dishwasher Detergent Packs are proven to powerfully eliminate grease and stubborn food stains better than leading national brands.*

They use a triple-action enzyme formula to effortlessly remove grease and food stains without leaving behind troublesome water spots. These dishwasher pods are made with plant-based …

20 packs
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What is the safest dish soap to use?

We want all of the products we use to be safe and healthy—both for us and the environment. Why would dish soap and dishwasher detergent be any different? It's no secret that most commercial dish soap and dishwashing detergent manufacturers put in several chemical additives that can harm the environment and possibly affect our health.

To ensure that you're getting the most natural dish soap for you and for the planet, avoid using ones that contain the following chemical additives:

  • Phosphates
  • Laurel sulfate
  • Chlorine
  • Chemical fragrances
  • Diethanolamine
  • Monoethanolamine
  • Triethanolamine
  • Formaldehyde
  • Ammonia

Those are some of the more toxic chemical components found in many dish soaps—and yes, formaldehyde and ammonia are often used. Formaldehyde is used to enhance the scent of all things, and ammonia is added to some of the heavy duty dish soaps. Ammonia is especially concerning, because if you add bleach to products that contain ammonia, it produces a highly toxic chlorine gas.

What is the most gentle dishwasher detergent?

What do we mean by the most gentle dishwasher detergent? We definitely don't want a detergent that is gentle on caked-on food and grease. We want that muck busted up and gone. But after you do the dishes or the dishwasher has drained, that soapy water has to go somewhere. That water ultimately ends up in our rivers, soil, and groundwater.

For decades, dishwasher liquids and powders have contained phosphates–which are tough on grease and food particles, but harm our rivers and streams. The phosphates break down minerals, and the phosphorus feeds algae blooms that deplete the water of oxygen and suffocate marine life.

This is why we want to make sure the remnants we send back to our rivers and streams do no harm. There are many dishwasher detergents—including ones from Grove—that don't contain phosphates, but rely on enzymes and natural compounds to do the job and keep our waterways clean.

Does Dr. Bronner's unscented dish soap cut grease?

Dr. Bronner's is an all-purpose soap that has a multitude of uses, including brushing teeth, cleaning toilets, and washing dishes. It comes in 7 scents without any synthetic chemicals, and there is also an unscented variety.

In scouring reviews and articles about this cleansing favorite, there is oddly very little about washing dishes. However, the information about this product is wildly abundant. Dr. Bronner's will clean anything at any time and is wonderfully effective. Add some to mop water, and it will clean up a grimy floor like nobody's business. Put a squirt on a washcloth, and you can get your whole body clean. Scrub your walls with it, and they'll look freshly painted. Given the multiple uses of this wonder soap, we can extrapolate from all of the other user experiences that greasy dishes would be the least of Dr. Bronner's worries.

What is Grove Collaborative?

At Grove, we take the guesswork out of which products are good for you and your home. Every product meets strict standards for being nontoxic, effective, sustainable, and cruelty-free. Once you find products you love, we ship to your home on a flexible, monthly schedule.

If you're ready to make the transition to natural cleaning, beauty, and household products, shop Grove Collaborative's natural products for the eco-friendly tools to tackle the job.

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