Fruit Flies Can't Resist Our Handy DIY Trap

Fruit Fly trap DIY
credit: Ana Stanciu

If there's one thing we love about summer, it's the bumper crop of beautiful fruits and veggies. One thing we don't love? Annoying fruit flies that are attracted to produce as it ripens on our counters. The tiny pests swirl about the kitchen, easily avoiding our frantic attempts to swat them down. Instead of resorting to a giant cloud of bug spray, put this simple DIY fruit fly trap to work. The magic ingredient that fruit flies can't resist? Apple cider vinegar.

Ingredients for fruit fly trap
credit: Ana Stanciu

Things You'll Need

  • Container with a narrow opening (like a bud vase)

  • Plastic wrap, if using a jar with a wide opening (like a mason jar) instead of a container with a narrow opening

Make the Solution

First, find a jar or vase to use for your trap, ideally one with a narrow opening at the top. I always use a bud vase.

Then pour in the apple cider vinegar until the jar is about 1/4 to 1/2 full. You can either use ACV on its own or a combination of half water and half ACV.

Apple cider vinegar fruit fly trap
credit: Ana Stanciu

You don't need a lot of ACV — even just covering the base of the jar will work, though you'll have to change it out more often. But you definitely don't want the jar too full because you need to lure the fruit flies down into the jar to trap them.

You can also add a spoonful of sugar or a piece of ripe/rotten fruit to the apple cider vinegar to make the trap extra attractive to fruit flies. I've tried my trap both with and without this enticement, and it works either way.

Then, add a couple of drops of dish soap to the apple cider vinegar. The dish soap breaks the surface tension of the liquid so that when fruit flies are lured in they get stuck instead of just sitting on top of the vinegar.

Add dish soap to fruit fly trap
credit: Ana Stanciu

If Using a Jar with a Wide Opening ...

For jars or bowls with a wide opening, cover the top with plastic wrap and poke a few holes through it.

Poking holes in fruit fly trap
credit: Ana Stanciu

You can also fold up a piece of paper into a funnel and place it in the jar. Both methods let the flies in, but make it hard for them to get back out.

Paper funnel for fruit fly trap
credit: Ana Stanciu

Set the Trap

Set out your trap wherever the flies are the worst. That's usually by any fruit on the counter or right by the sink, especially if you have a garbage disposal where rotten food can hide out. To get rid of the flies even faster, give your garbage disposal a thorough cleaning and set out more than one fruit fly trap. Dump out the ACV mixture and make a new batch as soon as bugs start to accumulate.


Stephanie Gerber

Stephanie Gerber

Stephanie Gerber is the founder and editor of the beauty and wellness site, HelloGlow.co. She lives in Nashville with her husband and three children.