How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies: Simple Tips and Tricks

Jill Holtz

May 8, 2022

how to get rid of fruit flies

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One of the pleasures of summer time is all the lovely seasonal fruit you can buy. Those delicious melons, peaches, berries and more. But as soon as you fill the fruit bowl in summer time, those pesky fruit flies start appearing!

Fruit flies are the bane of the summer months; they seem to just appear out of nowhere, flitting around the kitchen and driving you crazy! If you’re looking at how to get rid of fruit flies, you’ll definitely want to see these recommended tips – as well as ways to prevent them in the first place.

Keep it Simple: How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

#1. Make a Simple Fruit Fly Trap

You will need a shallow bowl or jar, then add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar and a few drops of dishwashing liquid. The flies are attracted to the vinegar and land on its surface, but the dishwashing liquid breaks the surface tension of the vinegar, and the fruit flies fall in and drown. Place your trap in the area where you’ve seen the fruit flies.

#2. Use a Bottle of Leftover Wine or Beer

As with vinegar, fruit flies love the smell of wine (or beer). Leave out an open bottle with a little left over alcohol in the bottom. You can also add a few drops of washing up liquid to the wine. The thin neck will keep the flies trapped in the bottle.

#3. Use Some Rotten Fruit

Mash up some of your rotten fruit in a jar and cover the top with plastic wrap – poke some holes in the wrap which the flies will go into but find hard to come back out of.

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#4. Paper Cone Method

Place a small amount of vinegar and a chunk of very ripe fruit in a jar. Roll some paper into a cone and stick it into the jar, placing the narrow opening down. The smell of rotting fruit will help lure the fruit flies in, and the cone makes it difficult for them to get out. You can compost or recycle your homemade funnel afterwards.

#5. Aunt Fannie’s FlyPunch

aunt fannie's flypunch

Some people recommend Aunt Fannies FlyPunch, a non-toxic fruit fly killer that is safe near food, kids and pets. It is easy to set up, you just flip the top and it will start attracting flies. It lasts up to 30 days once opened. Available on

#6. Make a Candle Trap

Set a candle in a deep dish full of water with a few drops of washing up liquid. Light the candle and switch off the lights. The flies will either go into the flame or the liquid.

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Tips for Preventing Fruit Flies

How to get rid of fruit flies - Mykidstime
  • Don’t keep ripe fruit out on the counter. Either freeze overripe fruit for breakfast smoothies or throw away.
  • You can also keep your fruit and veg in the fridge.
  • Wash your fruit and veg as soon as you get home from shopping to remove any potential eggs or larvae.
  • Empty your rubbish and recycling bins, and scrub them out regularly. Take out your compostable items regularly.
  • If you spill, especially fruit juice or alcohol, clean the spill straight away.
  • Don’t keep damp kitchen towels or dishrags lying around after they’ve been used. Try to wash them every day, as they can be a breeding ground for fruit flies.
  • Cleaning out the drain in your kitchen sink with some apple cider vinegar can help too, since fruit flies like to breed in the drain where bits of rotting fruit and vegetables often linger.
  • Running a kitchen fan (if you have one) may also help keep fruit flies away.
  • Basil plants may repel fruit flies. Place your basil plant near your fruit bowl or sprinkle some basil leaves directly on fruit. Fruit flies don’t like strong smells, so try soaking a sponge in lavender oil or placing cedar balls on your counter where you keep fruit.
  • Mix several drops of citronella, cedarwood and cinnamon in an oil diffuser, this will not only repel fruit flies, but house flies as well.

Homemade All-Purpose Cleaning Spray to Keep Flies Away

Try making this all-natural homemade multi purpose cleaning spray, that also helps keep flies away.


  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 cup white distilled vinegar
  • 3 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 5-10 drops lemon essential oil


  1. In a non-metal bowl, stir the baking soda into the water until it’s completely dissolved.
  2. Add the vinegar, then stir constantly for 1 minute until the foaming subsides. Add the remaining ingredients in order.
  3. Wait a few minutes, then stir again. Once the fizzing stops, transfer to a spray bottle.
  4. Swirl gently before each use.

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