Pesky fruit flies always seem to find their way to your farmer’s market haul before you even get a chance to fully enjoy it. It doesn’t take long for them to take over your kitchen. While your best bet for keeping them at bay is to store fresh fruit in sealed places, sometimes that overripe banana might sit out just a little too long and, bam, it’s too late. Compost that mushy produce ASAP that then try one of these effective remedies to banish fruit flies from your kitchen.
1. Unfiltered apple cider vinegar
Remove the cap from the bottle (it doesn’t have to be full — nearly empty will also work). Cover the opening with plastic wrap and secure with a rubber band. Then, poke a hole for the fruit flies to enter. They can’t resist the scent of vinegar, and they won’t be able to exit once they’re inside.
2. Vinegar and dish soap
If you find your fruit flies are impervious to the plastic wrap, try adding three drops of dish soap to a bowl of vinegar, and leave it uncovered. The soap cuts the surface tension of the vinegar so the flies will sink and drown.
3. A paper cone and a piece of fruit
Place a little vinegar and a chunk of very ripe fruit in a jar. Then, roll a piece of paper into a cone and stick it into the jar, placing the narrow opening down. The fruit flies will be drawn in, but won’t be able to get out.
4. Red wine
Like vinegar, fruit flies love the smell of wine. Try leaving out an open bottle with a little liquid — the skinny neck will keep the flies trapped.
5. Milk, sugar, and pepper
Combine a pint of milk, 4 ounces of raw sugar and 2 ounces ground pepper in a saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Then, pour into a shallow dish. The flies will be drawn to the mixture and quickly drown.
6. Fruit Fly Strips
Yep, just like there are strips for regular old house flies, fruit flies have their own simple traps. Hang these odorless strips from cabinet knobs nearest your most problematic spots. You might snare a mosquito or two as well. Bonus!