How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies Without Apple Cider Vinegar

Fruit flies are a common problem in homes, especially during the summer months. They can be a nuisance and cause concern about food safety if left unchecked. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get rid of them naturally. Here are seven effective methods for getting rid of fruit flies without relying on apple cider vinegar:

What attracts fruit flies?

Fruit flies are attracted to ripe or overripe fruit. Fruit that has been left out for a long period of time, such as with an open bag of applesauce or in a rotten banana peel will attract fruit flies.

Fruit flies also love the smell and taste of fermenting fruit juices like apple cider vinegar, peach nectar, orange juice, and wine (although this is more of an annoyance than a threat). Because these items have so many sugars and nutrients for the fruit fly larvae to feed on, your chances of getting rid of them quickly are slim if you leave them in your kitchen cupboards or pantry.

Where do fruit flies breed?

So where do fruit flies breed? Fruit flies are attracted to any kind of rotting food, including:

  • Fruit that has fallen on the ground and started to rot
  • Food that has been left out for too long after cooking or eating it (such as half-eaten plates of spaghetti)
  • Garbage, whether it’s an actual pile or just old banana peels sitting around in your kitchen trashcan.

How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

Fruit flies are a common problem in homes and businesses. They are attracted to fruit, vegetables, and other natural items. Fruit flies can be a nuisance because they can cause problems when they get into food. Fruit flies can also carry diseases that can be harmful to humans or animals.

Fruit fly infestations are hard to control because the insects have short life spans and are difficult to kill on their own. If you notice that you have fruit flies around your home or business then it is time for you to take action before things get out of hand!

1. Use Dish Soap and Water

If you already have a bottle of dish soap on hand, this is a great place to start. The key ingredient that makes dish soap work so well is an insecticidal soap called sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS), which can be found in products like Dawn and Palmolive.

Use a mixture of equal parts water and dish soap to kill fruit flies. Mix the solution in a spray bottle and spray it on an area where you’ve seen the fruit flies. This can be very effective, but it is not a long-term solution to getting rid of them.

2. Use Dish Soap and Beer, Wine, or Soda

Fruit flies are attracted to beer, wine, and soda. To get rid of the fruit flies in your home, add a small amount of dish soap to each container of beer, wine, or soda then place them in areas where you see fruit flies most frequently. The alcohol will attract the fruit flies and drown them before they can reproduce.

This method is similar to using dish soap in water except that you add either beer, wine, or soda to the mix instead of water. The alcohol content of these liquids will kill the fruit flies over time rather than immediately like water would do on its own.

3. Use Baking Soda, Vinegar, and Salt

Baking soda attracts them, but it also dehydrates them when they land on it. Vinegar is acidic and will burn their exoskeleton if they land in it; the salt will dehydrate them as well. Use equal parts of each ingredient and put it into a shallow dish that’s easy for the fruit flies to get into (like a pie pan).

The mixture will dry out quickly so refresh as needed throughout the day or every couple of days if you don’t see many fruit flies around anymore.

  • Mix equal parts baking soda and vinegar in a small bowl (1 part baking soda to 2 parts vinegar).
  • Sprinkle the mixture liberally on the fruit fly-infested area.
  • Wait at least 5 minutes or until you notice the flies start to land on top of the mixture.

4. Use Lemongrass Oil, Lemon Peels, and Lemon Juice

Lemongrass oil is an effective bug repellant that will keep most pests away from your home without having any negative side effects on humans or pets. You can add about 20 drops of lemongrass oil into a spray bottle with water, shake well and then spray onto surfaces where you notice fruit flies congregating (such as countertops)

5. Use a Fan to Dry Out the Area

Fruit flies are attracted to moisture, so you can use a fan to dry out the area. This will prevent them from laying eggs and breeding in the first place.

Using a fan is also a good way to get rid of fruit flies that have already nested in your home, as it will help dry out their nests and force them back into their pupae stage so they can die naturally.

6. Use Milk and sugar mixture

Pour ½ cup of sugar into ½ cup of water, then add 2 tablespoons of milk to this mixture and stir well until dissolved. Add 1 teaspoon each of lemon juice and vanilla extract and mix well again. Pour this mixture into empty bottles with tight-fitting lids and place each bottle near infested fruits or vegetables. Fruit flies will be attracted to the mixture and drown in it after drinking the liquid inside the bottle.[2]


A fruit fly infestation can be a nuisance, but it doesn’t have to ruin your day. With these tips, you can get rid of those pesky little critters and keep them from coming back.

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