Natural Home Remedies For Fruit Flies

  • Written By Dan Edwards on February 2, 2021
    Last Updated: February 2, 2021

Fruit flies can be a real pain, but getting rid of them doesn’t have to be! They can be attracted to various things, such as damp areas, open or overly-full rubbish bins, neglected dirty dishes in the sink, and your fruit bowl!

A fruit fly infestation doesn’t have to mean that you go out and buy loads of fancy products to get rid of them. Shop-bought repellents and treatments for fruit flies can be expensive, and sometimes ineffective. With these home remedies, you’ll only have to reach into your kitchen cupboards to find what you need to get rid of fruit flies in your home.

Some natural home remedies for fruit flies are:

  • Apple cider vinegar
  • A candle
  • Stale wine
  • Rotten fruit
  • Water and essential oils

What’s A Fruit Fly?

Fruit flies are tiny, yellow insects that tend to linger around ripe fruit and old bits of food sitting in your bin. They tend to live and breed in damp areas, such as drains. Fruit flies like to lay their eggs on and around fruit.

The female fruit flies can lay up to 100 eggs per day. These eggs quickly become larvae that feed on your fruit. It can be annoying to have fruit flies flying around your kitchen and enjoying your food, especially since they carry disease and can cause illness if ingested.

Homemade Traps

You can get rid of fruit flies by creating a DIY trap using household products that you’re likely to have stuffed away in your kitchen somewhere. Here are some of our favorite fruit fly traps that are effective and easy to make:

Apple Cider Vinegar Trap

What You Need

  • Jar or similar container
  • 2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • ½ cup of warm water
  • Few drops of dish soap

What To Do

  1. Mix the vinegar, sugar, dish soap and water into the container and stir until sugar dissolves
  2. Place the container near the places in your kitchen that the fruit flies frequent
  3. We advise that you make multiple traps as one may not be enough

How It Works

The fruit flies are attracted to the smell of the vinegar and sugar. When they get to the solution, they won’t be able to get out because they’ll get stuck in the dish soap.

Candle Trap

What You Need

  • A candle
  • ½ cup of warm water
  • Few drops of dish soap (optional)

What To Do

  1. Put a lit candle onto a tray or in a bowl filled with water — and a few drops of dish soap, if you like
  2. Place it near the area experiencing the fruit fly infestation
  3. Turn off the lights and block any external light by closing windows and curtains, so that the sole source of light is the candle

How It Works

Fruit flies that get too close to the candle will have their wings burnt off and subsequently drop out of the air. The fruit flies that successfully avoid the flame will instead be attracted to its reflection in the water and will be unable to escape once they land in the water. Adding the dish soap will make their escape almost impossible.

Wine Trap

What You Need

  • A bottle of leftover wine

What To Do

Too hungover to drink the wine leftover from last night? Don’t bin it; it’s now become your new fruit fly trap! Leave it uncorked near your fruit fly infestation.

How It Works

The fruit flies are attracted to the smell of stale wine. They’ll either drown once they come into contact with the wine or will be unable to escape as the neck of the wine bottle is narrow and acts as a natural barrier to keep them trapped. Beer and other fermented beverages will also do the trick if you don’t have any wine!

Rotten Fruit Trap

What You Need

  • Small piece of fruit
  • Jar or similar container
  • Cling film

What To Do

  1. Put a piece of fruit in the container and cover it over with cling film
  2. Pierce a few small holes in the cling film cover

How It Works

The fruit flies will be attracted to the smell of the fruit. Once they fly in, they’ll be trapped inside the container by the cling film cover.

Fruit Fly Spray

The homemade traps above can be super effective at getting rid of fruit flies. If you want to launch a two-pronged attack, you can also use a DIY repellent spray.

What You Need

  • 2 cups of water
  • Few drops of essential oil

What To Do

  1. Mix the water and the essential oil
  2. Spray it onto the surfaces affected by, or near, the fruit fly infestation


Prevention Is The Best Cure

Alongside using some of our favorite natural home remedies for getting rid of fruit flies, there are also things you can do to prevent fruit flies from entering your home. Fruit flies hate cleanliness, so make sure your kitchen is spotless, and this will help ward them off!

  1. Do your dishes regularly
  2. Cover your bins and take the rubbish out regularly
  3. Store fruit and vegetables in the fridge
  4. Clean up spillages straight away, especially juice and alcohol
  5. Wash fruits and vegetables before storing them to remove eggs and larvae
  6. Clean your drains regularly as these are home to many fruit flies


Fruit flies are drawn to bins that have been left unattended for some time, dirty dishes, damp areas and ripening fruit. The home remedies discussed in this article can help get rid of fruit flies using items that can be found in your kitchen.

It’s important to prevent fruit flies from infiltrating your living space. Wiping down your surfaces regularly, taking your bins out and doing your dishes can go a long way in keeping fruit flies at bay.