Eat Drink Better

Published on July 8th, 2013 | by Becky Striepe


Getting Rid of Fruit Flies Naturally

getting rid of fruit flies

This is a simple, inexpensive fruit fly trap that will get those suckers our of your kitchen without harsh chemicals!

Have you been a little bit slack about taking out your kitchen compost lately? If you’re anything like me, emptying the compost bin is pretty low on the ol’ to do list, and chances are it sits on the counter for a bit longer than it ought to. In the summertime, that means one nasty side effect: fruit flies. Getting rid of fruit flies can be tough, and this trap has made a huge difference in my kitchen.

We had been dealing with fruit flies for over a week before I finally got fed up and decided to do something about it. The last straw was when I brought some food to a potluck, and when I opened the bag to pull out my container, a fruit fly zoomed out of it. GROSS!

getting rid of fruit flies

I shared this tip on our Facebook page a couple of weeks ago, but it’s been so effective, I thought I’d share it here for you guys! Here’s how to make an effective, all-natural trap for getting rid of fruit flies:


  • apple cider vinegar, kombucha, or wine
  • natural, liquid dish soap
  • a mason jar
  • plastic wrap and a rubber band (optional)
  • a kitchen skewer


Fill your jar up with about 1″ of vinegar. You can see how little it takes in the photo of my trap above. Add 1-2 drops of dish soap, and swirl it around to combine. From what I understand, the soap breaks the vinegar’s surface tension. If you skip the soap, the flies will be able to land on the surface of the vinegar without sinking.

You can just set this out on the counter, but I’ve found that it’s a little more effective if you make it harder for the flies to change their minds once they’re in the jar. If you want to make a cover, just put a small piece of plastic wrap over the top of the jar, secure it with a rubber band, and stab a few holes in the top, so the flies can get in, but it’s hard for them to get back out.

Once your jar is full of flies, maybe put on some Alice in Chains and empty it out down the sink?

Getting Rid of Fruit Flies: Alternate Ideas

The vinegar trap isn’t the only method that works for getting rid of fruit flies! Here are a couple of other suggestions to get rid of them. One comes from our sister site, Green Living Ideas, and the other from our Facebook community:

  • Cone Method – Instead of plastic wrap, you can use a homemade paper cone to keep the flies from escaping your jar.
  • Fruit Bowl Method – A Facebook fan suggesting putting a couple of chunks of fruit like apple into a container that has a lid. The flies will swarm this delicious treat, and you can slam the lid on them. Fruit flies are pretty slow, and she said that she cut down on her problem significantly this way.

Do you have any favorite methods to bust the fruit flies outta your kitchen? Tell us in the comments!

Image Credits: Fruit Fly Trap photo by Becky Striepe, Creative Commons Fruit Fly photo by shioshvili

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About the Author

My name is Becky Striepe (rhymes with “sleepy”), and I am a crafts and food writer from Atlanta, Georgia with a passion for making our planet a healthier, happier, and more compassionate place to live. My mission is to make vegan food and crafts accessible to everyone!. If you like my work, you can also find me on Twitter, Facebook, and .

3 Responses to Getting Rid of Fruit Flies Naturally

  1. Sarah says:

    My sister-in-law and I tried many different suggestions to kill these pesky creatures. The best 3 we found all involved dish soap (that’s what’ll do the killing instead of trapping). Along with the dish soap the 3 different things we used were beer (they love it), wine (the love that better!) and some ruby red grapefruit juice.
    Bananas and beer REALLY attracted them, but it wasn’t until we used the dish soap that it killed them.
    Good luck!

  2. Alex says:

    Because fruit flies are really slow, I just suck them up with a little vacuum. It works really well, especially when they’re congregated in one area (like around your compost).

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