6 Ways to Use Black Pepper to Keep Flies Away: An Effective Guide

Red-headed fly on stem of a green leaf

Say goodbye to pesky flies that trouble your home, and say hello to the power of black pepper! This seemingly ordinary household spice packs a punch when it comes to keeping flies at bay. In this article, we’ll explore the nature of black pepper and its ability to ward off flies.

One might wonder why something as simple as black pepper can be so effective against these bothersome insects. The secret lies in its strong scent, which flies find rather unappealing.

With an understanding of why black pepper is so formidable against these pesky invaders, it’s time to dive into the various creative ways to unleash its power on your undesirable winged guests. From sprinkling the spice strategically around your home to concocting a homemade spray, we’ll guide you through six ingenious methods to bid farewell to your fly troubles using black pepper.

Key Takeaways:

  • Black pepper’s pungent scent, due to piperine, makes it effective in repelling flies.
  • Utilize the power of black pepper in creative ways to keep flies away from your home.
  • Ensure a comprehensive strategy by exploring other natural remedies and pest control options.

* This post contains affiliate links.

Understanding the Connection Between Flies and Black Pepper

Yellow house fly needing to be deterred with black pepper

Black pepper is well-known as a seasoning for your favorite dishes, but did you know it also has the ability to repel flies? Flies often invade your home in search of food, but they’re not fans of black pepper’s strong aroma.

Let’s explore why black pepper works to keep these pesky critters at bay, and some creative ways to use it as a natural pest repellent.

Flies Hate Pungent Aromas And Tastes

So, why do flies detest black pepper? It’s likely due to the fact that black pepper (Piper nigrum) contains bioactive compounds known for their pungent aroma and taste. These compounds can irritate the flies’ sensory receptors, making them avoid areas where the pepper is present.

Science backs us up here! An article from the Journal of Chemical Ecology found that black pepper deterred onion flies by 88%-100% when given the choice between a control food and food with black pepper.

Remember, the key is to be consistent with your applications and reapply as needed to maintain an effective barrier against flies. By implementing these creative methods, you can finally tell those annoying insects to “buzz off” and enjoy your home without the uninvited winged guests!

If you’re having problems with other flies, such as fruit flies, you can take a look our article on the Ways To Use Black Pepper To Repel Fruit Flies.

6 Ways to Use Black Pepper To Keep Flies Away

bowl of ground black pepper and wooden spoon filled with peppercorns to keep flies away

First, let’s understand what black pepper is. It’s a fruit, derived from the Piper nigrum plant, dried and grounded into a powdery form. The active ingredient in black pepper, Piperine, is responsible for the strong smell that flies despise.

Here are 6 creative ways to use black pepper to keep flies away:

1. Sprinkle Black Pepper

Sprinkle black pepper around entry points, such as windows and doors. This will create a barrier that flies won’t want to cross. Freshly ground black pepper will give off a stronger scent, so consider grinding fresh pepper grounds in these areas:

  • Window sills
  • Near doorways
  • In the kitchen
  • Any other area invaded by pesky flies

Consider purchasing whole peppercorns and using a grinder like OXO Good Grips Contoured Mess-Free Pepper Grinder to really keep those pesky flies away!

2. Create A Black Pepper Spray

Mix black pepper with water in a spray bottle and spray it on surfaces where flies are common, like countertops and dining tables. Be sure to wipe down the surfaces afterward.

This is also a good solution for screen doors, which flies often land on while trying to sneak inside!

3. Protect Garbage Cans With Black Pepper

Place a small dish of black pepper near your garbage cans. The aroma will deter flies from getting too close to your trash. Consider sprinkling some black pepper directly on the garbage cans as well.

Flies are attracted to trash due to the moisture and the smell of decaying food. In addition to using black pepper, try to keep your trash cans sealed with a well-fitting lid.

4. Use Black Pepper Sachets

Create black pepper sachets by filling small cloth bags with the spice. Hang them around your home to keep flies away, especially in food storage areas. Peppercorns are the easiest to use for this method, as ground pepper will simply fall through the mesh holes.

Try placing Happy Belly Tellicherry Black Pepper Whole Peppercorn in sachets. Think about where you see flies most often, and hang the sachets in those areas.

5. Protect Your Garden With The Power Of Black Pepper

Spread black pepper around the perimeter of your garden. It not only keeps flies away but also deters other unwanted insects. And remember, freshly ground black pepper will be more pungent.

6. Use Black Pepper While Cooking

Cook with black pepper more often, or simply boil pepper in water and let the steam permeate your home. The scent will help keep the flies away.

By incorporating these methods into your daily routine, you can effectively repel house flies without resorting to harsh chemicals or expensive insecticides. So go ahead, give your home a fly-free makeover with black pepper!

Natural Fly Repellants Other Than Black Pepper

Mint And Clove

Mint and clove are two other popular natural fly repellants. Flies detest the strong aroma of these plants, so placing them around your home can help deter flies.

Grow them in pots indoors or plant them in your garden to create a barrier against pesky insects! For a more detailed look at using these magical herbs against flies, read our article on the effective ways to use cloves to keep flies away.

Eucalyptus And Citronella

Eucalyptus and citronella also work wonders in keeping flies at bay, and these essential oils can be used in diffusers or sprays to create a fly-free zone. Citronella candles like OFF! Backyard Citronella Scented Candles are another great outdoor option to keep flies away.

Citronella isn’t the only candle scent that keeps these buzzing nuisances away. Read more about the best candle scents to help keep flies away here.

Cayenne Pepper

In addition to herbs, some spices like cayenne pepper can be quite effective in repelling flies. Sprinkle it around the house or garden to keep flies from invading your space.


Flies are also not fans of citrus scents, so placing lemon, orange, or grapefruit peels around your home can work as a natural deterrent.


Lavender is another powerful natural repellant against flies and mosquitoes. You can plant it in your garden, use lavender essential oil, or even create a lavender-infused spray for your home.

Essential Oils

Making clever use of essential oils can also help keep flies and other pests away from your beloved home. Here are a few popular essential oils that repel flies:

Essential OilMain IngredientSmell
PeppermintMentholMinty, fresh
CitronellaCitronellalLemon-like, citrusy
EucalyptusEucalyptolFresh, camphoraceous
LavenderLinaloolFloral, herbaceous
Tea TreeTerpinen-4-olMedicinal, earthy
LemongrassCitralFresh, lemony
Rosemary1,8-CineoleHerbaceous, woody

To make a homemade fly-repellant spray, mix a few drops of these essential oils with water and spray around doors, windows, and other fly-prone areas.

Keeping a healthy predator population is another key factor in keeping flies away. To figure out which insects keep the flies in check, take a look at our article on the Natural Predators That Eat Flies.

So, while black pepper is definitely a force to be reckoned with when it comes to repelling flies, there are numerous other natural methods available. Keep experimenting with different herbs, spices, and essential oils to find the perfect, non-toxic solutions for your fly problem.

Different Traps to Keep Flies Away

UV trap for flies

Fly problem in your home? No worries! In this section, we will explore various traps to fend off those pesky flies. These traps are natural and easy to make, ensuring a fly-free household without using harsh chemicals.

Let’s dive into some effective fly traps!

UV Traps

An effective weapon in your fly-trapping arsenal includes UV traps. These devices emit ultraviolet light, attracting flies and subsequently trapping or zapping them. You can easily find them online or at your local hardware store.

Mosalogic Flying Insect Trap uses UV to lure flies into the trap and can be used indoors by simply plugging it into an outlet.

Homemade Traps

Additionally, homemade traps, like a mixture of cider vinegar, sugar, and a drop of dish soap, can be very effective at capturing flies. The sweet scent of sugar and vinegar lures the flies, while the soap breaks the surface tension, trapping them. Simply place this mixture in a small container and let it work its magic!

And remember, if you find a fly in your home, don’t panic. There are steps you can take to keep them out! Check out our article on the things to do if you find a fly in your house for more details.

By using these different traps, you’ll effectively keep flies away from your home using natural, chemical-free methods.

Other Natural Remedies to Repel Flies

Vinegar to keep flies away


Vinegar and apple cider vinegar can be potent allies when it comes to repelling pesky flies. You can create simple traps by mixing vinegar with a few drops of dish soap and a touch of sugar. The sweet scent attracts the flies, while the soap’s surface tension causes them to sink and drown.


Peppermint will not only make your home smell fresh, but it’ll also keep flies at bay! Flies detest the scent of peppermint, so using peppermint essential oil or planting some around your home may just do the trick.

You can mix a couple of drops of peppermint oil with water and a little dish soap, and spray it around your home to make a barrier that flies can’t stand.

Repellent Plants

Moving towards the garden, various plants can do wonders in keeping flies away. For instance, lavender, with its lovely scent, repels those unwanted insects. You can also use lavender oil on sachets or oil burners around your home for added protection.


Finally, citrus peels and certain vegetables can also lend a helping hand in the battle against flies. The strong smell of citrus discourages flies from entering your home, while vegetables such as onions can also keep them at bay.

So, don’t throw out those peels – simply arrange them on a plate near your door, and let them do their work.

Common Flies Affected by Black Pepper

Black pepper, a common kitchen spice, has a surprising effect on various types of flies. Let’s take a look at some main contenders that can be deterred by using black pepper.

  • Gnats and Fruit Flies: These tiny, irritating critters are nosy visitors in our kitchens and gardens. The secret weapon to put an end to their unwelcome exploration? You guessed it—black pepper!
  • Common House Fly: The pesky house fly finds black pepper quite unappetizing, making it an excellent repellent. Your living room will no longer be their playground.
  • Blow Flies: Known for their metallic, colorful appearance, blow flies are nightmarish invaders. Black pepper’s strong smell can keep them at bay.
  • Deer Flies and Black Flies: These biting insects are outdoor nuisances that black pepper can help repel. Sprinkle it around your patio or picnic area, making outdoor leisure more enjoyable.

Deer flies can be particularly annoying. Check out the best deer fly repellents to keep these biting insects away from your home.

With black pepper proving its worth in combatting these uninvited pests, you now have a formidable spicy ally by your side to keep your home and outdoor spaces fly-free.

Professional Help for Flies

Pest control professionals are your go-to when fly problems get out of hand. These specialists can identify what is attracting flies, how to remove attractants, and how to keep flies away for good.

If you decide to go this route, use our nationwide pest control finder to connect with a professional in your local neighborhood!

That’s A Wrap!

Using black pepper to keep flies away is a natural, chemical-free solution for homeowners trying to repel pests. Flies detest black pepper due to its strong, pungent aroma.

Black pepper, scientifically known as Piper nigrum, is commonly known as the “King of spices.” It has been widely used in various cultures to add unique flavor to dishes but has also been extensively explored for its biological properties, making it an excellent option for keeping flies at bay.

Here is a recap of six creative ways to use black pepper to keep flies away:

  1. Sprinkle it: Directly scatter black pepper around the areas where you’ve noticed fly activity.
  2. Create a repellent spray: Mix black pepper with water and essential oils like lavender or eucalyptus, and use it as a spray to deter flies from entering your home.
  3. Utilize pepper plants: Grow black pepper plants around your home or keep potted plants near entrances to naturally repel flies.
  4. Set up pepper sachets: Fill small cloth bags with black pepper and hang them near doors or windows.
  5. A pungent paste: Make a paste from black pepper and water. Apply this paste to surfaces where flies tend to land or breed, such as garbage bins or outdoor dining tables.
  6. Simmer it: Boil water with black pepper and let it simmer for some time. The pungent aroma will help to repel flies.

To ensure the success of using black pepper to keep flies away, keep your surroundings clean and minimize breeding grounds for these pests. Regularly use steam cleaners, enzyme, and microbe cleaners to remove grime, grease, and food debris where flies might breed.

By employing these methods alongside black pepper, you can successfully keep flies at bay!


ALFARO, R.L., PIERCE, H.D., JR., BORDEN, J.H., andOEHLSCHLAGER, A.C. 1981. Insect feeding and oviposition deterrents from western red cedar foliage.J. Chem. Ecol. 7:39–48.

Anushree Malik , Neena Singh & Santosh Satya (2007) House fly (Musca domestica): A review of control strategies for a challenging pest, Journal of Environmental Science and Health, Part B, 42:4, 453-469,

Keiding, J., & World Health Organization. (1986). The house-fly: biology and control (No. WHO/VBC/86.937. Unpublished). World Health Organization.

Paliy, A. P., Sumakova, N. V., & Ishchenko, K. V. (2018). Biological control of house fly. Ukrainian Journal of Ecology8(2), 230-234.

How to pest proof your home in under a day e-book by Zack DeAngelis

Download My Free E-Book!

 Take a look at my guide on Pest Proofing Your Home In Under a Day! I get into the nitty-gritty on the most common types of pests you’ll see on your property including BOTH insects and wildlife, along with the specific signs to look for regarding any pest you have questions about.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *