Homemade Traps For Fruit Flies

Prep Time
Cook Time
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Recipe: #15394

November 01, 2014

Categories: Non Food,

"My kitchen is being taken over by these little pests. I've had apple cider vinegar sitting out for a week, but it's not working. So tonight I did some research and put together 3 of the 4 traps listed below. I just went back to take pictures of them, and the apple cider vinegar trap is winning, hands down. BUT, by day 2 and following, the Jar-Type Trap with Fruit was the most popular. From everydayrootsdotcom"

Original is 4 servings
  • Apple Cider Vinegar Trap
  • Jar-Type Trap with Fruit
  • Merry Fly Trap
  • Tried and True Trap


  • Serving Size: 1 (204.5 g)
  • Calories 225
  • Total Fat - 6.3 g
  • Saturated Fat - 2.8 g
  • Cholesterol - 17.7 mg
  • Sodium - 77 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 36.7 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 0.5 g
  • Sugars - 35.5 g
  • Protein - 4.1 g
  • Calcium - 79.7 mg
  • Iron - 0.4 mg
  • Vitamin C - 1.8 mg
  • Thiamin - 0 mg

Step by Step Method

Step 1

APPLE CIDER VINEGAR TRAP: Heat up vinegar and pour into mason jar, add a drop or two of dish soap. For extra temptation, drop in a piece of ripe fruit. The dish soap breaks the surface tension of the water so the flies can't just sit on top and fly away when they're done.

Step 2

Recipe calls for making a funnel out of paper and taping it to the mouth of the jar, so that's what I did. Then I read the reviews on the everydayroots site and they said this step isn't needed.

Step 3

My results: I forgot to heat the vinegar, but this one worked immediately. I put a few pieces of over-ripe honeydew melon in it. I've got all 3 traps lined up, and the flies are swarmed on this one. I've already got half a dozen trapped in just a few minutes. I tried the same thing exactly in a shallow dish, and didn't catch near so many, so definitely sticking with the mason jar.

Step 4

JAR-TYPE TRAP WITH FRUIT: Place fruit in bottom of mason jar, cover with plastic wrap, secure with a rubber band, then poke holes in wrap with a toothpick. I poked about 24 holes. The flies will be drawn into the trap but won't know how to get out. When jar is full, submerge in a bucket of warm soapy water and let sit for 10 minutes.

Step 5

My Results: Not much activity day 1, but by day 2 the flies were all over this one rather than the others. Day 3 now, and this one is still the most popular. And I only have about 2 fruit flies flying around, yea! The rest are busy working their way into this trap.

Step 6

MERRY FLY TRAP: Evidently fruit flies like red wine and can become intoxicated, just as we can. Recipe says to leave a little bit of red wine at the bottom of the bottle and let it sit out. "The fruit flies will flock to it and die a very merry death." If they don't drown, you can either put the jar in freezer for 20 minutes or submerge it in warm soapy water for 10 minutes.

Step 7

This is the one I haven't tried yet, but next time we finish a bottle of wine I'll give it a go.

Step 8

TRIED AND TRUE TRAP: This recipe comes from the Old Farmer's Almanac, and has been used since 1850 in New England. Combine ingredients in a saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Pour into shallow bowls and place around kitchen. If flies seem to be landing and flying away, add a drop or two of dish soap to dish.

Step 9

(After measuring out the milk and raw sugar, I found I only had 1/2 ounce of pepper. Hopefully it will work anyway.)

Step 10

My results: It's day 4 and nothing yet. I don't know if I just didn't have enough pepper, or the milk has to get really sour for this one to work. Or maybe the other traps are just too enticing. Anyway, with the price of pepper being so high, I won't be trying this one again.


No special items needed.

Editorial Notes

The ingredient tips, suggestions, variations, facts, questions and answers below are not edits to the original author's recipe. They are not meant to imply any change would improve the recipe. They're offered for convenience, alternative ideas, and points of interest. If you have any comments about them, please post in the Help & Ideas forum.

  • The apple cider vinegar trap only requires a few simple ingredients that are often already found in most kitchens, making it a convenient and cost-effective solution for fruit fly infestations.
  • The Jar-Type Trap with Fruit allows for the use of any over-ripe fruit, providing a way to use up produce that might otherwise go to waste. Plus, the added sweetness of the fruit can be more enticing to the fruit flies than just plain vinegar.

Spicy Apple Cider Vinegar Trap Add 1 teaspoon of cayenne pepper to the apple cider vinegar and heat it up before pouring it into the mason jar. For extra temptation, add a few pieces of over-ripe fruit. The spiciness of the pepper will attract the fruit flies even more.


Q: How long does it take for the homemade fruit fly traps to start working?

A: It varies depending on the trap, but most traps start working within a few hours to a day. The apple cider vinegar trap tends to work the fastest.

Q: Will the homemade fruit fly traps attract other types of insects?

A: No, the ingredients used in the traps are specifically designed to attract fruit flies and should not attract other types of insects.

1 Reviews


I have been using the Apple Cider Vinegar Trap for 2 years now. This is the only one I use. And I put the liquid in small open jars or dishes with no cone. And it works perfectly for me. Thanks for sharing this Pup!


review by:
(1 Nov 2014)

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Fun facts:

: This recipe has been used since 1850 in New England and was featured in the Old Farmer's Almanac, making it a tried and true method for catching fruit flies.

: The creator of this recipe found it on the website everydayrootsdotcom, which was founded by Claire Goodall, a popular blogger and author known for her natural remedies and DIY recipes.