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Homemade Non-Toxic Ant Poison {VIDEO}

Looking for a non-toxic ant poison? Try my easy homemade ant poison that works as a non-toxic ant trap bait. You can feel comfortable with your kids in the same house as this homemade non-toxic ant killer recipe. 

homemade non-toxic Ant poison

Even though I think of myself as a food blog, one of the most popular posts around here, especially in the summer, is about ants.

More specifically, how to kill ants. Naturally, of course. Winking smile I don’t have a lot of experience with fire ants or carpenter ants or big freaky looking ants (except for the one-inch long beast that waltzed across my floor one night, leaving me just hoping that whatever species it was didn’t fall into the “social insect” category).

Nope, my ants – and I have plenty of experience with them – are the little “sugar ants” that invade one’s kitchen, first one at a time so you don’t even give them a second thought, then in droves.

The other post has a plethora of methods – a homemade insecticidal spray that kills on contact for hand-to-hand combat, dozens of household items you can use to make lines the ants cannot cross (and whether they work or are laughable), and a homemade Terro-style ant poison, which is definitely my go-to and most effective method.

homemade non toxic Ant poison with borax and corn syrup on index card

I’m so grateful for the knowledge of this quick and easy, non-toxic, frugal ant trap, and I thought I’d make a video to demonstrate, truly, how fast you can put it together.

The video is three minutes long, but half of it is me flapping my lips about ants – the actual time taken to make the ant poison? A mere 45 seconds:

Non-Toxic Homemade Ant Killer Recipe Video

If you can’t see the video above, click HERE to view it on YouTube.

Natural vs. Non-Toxic Ant Repellent

I didn’t mean to say natural ant repellent. In the video I say “natural” a couple times, but it would be more accurate to say “non-toxic”.

Borax is generally recognized as safe and “natural” but sometimes I’m not so sure if it’s ideal – it’s in a lot of homemade dishwasher detergents that I tried and I felt iffy about having it down low by my crawling babies at that time, since it’s still not something I’d really want to them to put in their mouths (although much better than conventional detergents).

And corn syrup? Well. You know how I feel about that. The only bottle in the house is the one to kill the ants – not to kill the people, thankyouverymuch. We don’t cook with it.

Note: You could use anything sweet that ants would enjoy, including maple syrup or honey if you’re willing to spare a spoonful. A reader also shared that you can simply dissolve white sugar in water (hot water or boil it) and mix the borax in. Soak a cotton ball with it to “serve” your ant party guests.

The Simple Non-Toxic Ant Killer Poison Recipe

If you don’t want to watch the 3-minute non-toxic homemade ant killer recipe video, that’s cool. Here’s how it’s done:

corn syrup for homemade non toxic ant poison on index card

Pour some corn syrup on an index card:

homemade non toxic ant poison with borax on index card

Add borax, enough to mix in thoroughly but not super-saturate it:

Stir it together…

…and then they come

homemade non toxic ant poison on index card

…and come…

It’s a little freaky when they’re all having their ant party, but within a day, the ants will be gone!

They eat the corn syrup, the borax kills them, and if all goes well, they’ve taken quite a bit back to the colony and then they leave you and your kitchen alone. Smile

homemade non-toxic Ant poison

Other Green Solutions

Have you tried this homemade non-toxic ant killer recipe? What’s your favorite non-toxic ant trap?
Unless otherwise credited, photos are owned by the author or used with a license from Canva or Deposit Photos.

23 thoughts on “Homemade Non-Toxic Ant Poison {VIDEO}”

    1. Carolyn @ Kitchen Stewardship

      Hi Kim, as long as it sticks on the card it shouldn’t matter if it’s a bit pastier than the images show!

  1. Thanks, great tip! Does it have to be Borax, or will another powdered detergent work (Cascade, Ajax, etc…) — I don’t happen to have Borax on hand.


  2. Melanie Heller

    Hi used to have a recipe that killed ants, roaches etc. But lost it when I moved. It had 3 items. 1 cup Borax powder, 1 cup granulated sugar & another item which I thiinkk was 1 cup Flour. Mix powders together & sprinkle behind & under objects…cabinets, chairs, etc. Where pets & children do not reach. It always works & lasts a long time unless it gets wet.

  3. well, unless I didn’t use enough corn syrup, I didn’t attract one ant. They walked around the cardboard. They walked through the cinnamon . . . it’s like I challenged them to find new ways into the kitchen – I cannot find out where they are coming in from – but it’s through the dining room [hard to see on carpet] arrgghhh. Any other suggestions? thanks in advance.

    1. Yikes, crafty little buggers Dianne! 🙁 Are they the tiny sugar ants or something else? Many find luck with diatomaceous earth around the entire outside of your house; then you don’t have to know where they’re coming in exactly.

      Good luck! Katie

    2. Kim Robinson

      I’m having the same problem as you I’ve tried crushed up chalk, cinnamon, black pepper, 5TPowdered Sugar, 5Tborax, 3T Water mix together and pour in a plastic water bottle cut down to around 2 inches so far nothing and I have cats it’s driving me insane I don’t know what else to do. If you find the solution Please let me know

  4. Mother Earth New has warning articles on borax.

  5. I’ve also taken sidewalk chalk and drawn a line around window openings to keep ants from coming inside the house. They must not like the texture of the chalk because they don’t cross that line. To experiment outside, I’ve drawn a circle on a brick wall and the ants walk around it to avoid it!

  6. Angela Anthony

    I don’t keep corn syrup in the house, so what I’ve use instead is jelly/jam, mixed with the borax. Works awesome!

  7. Patti Johnson

    Hi, Katie!

    I am THRILLED to be one of the winners of the Redmond Clay Giveaway! YAY! 1st time winner! So excited! (I’ve already sent Katy my info.)

    Thanks for all your hard work with your blog and for offering so much great, free information and wonderful giveaways!

    Very warmest regards,

    Patti 🙂

  8. I had heard of using borax before but thought it was poisonous for children. Online info is confusing. Can you tell me what you know about that?

    1. Theresa,
      Arg, I went to look up the borax question in one of my dishwasher posts, and I didn’t summarize it, just said I wasn’t comfortable having it down low with my toddler and linked to another post – which is now gone. Shoot! That means I don’t know much at ALL. But I put it on my post ideas list to look into for sure! 🙂 Katie

      1. Katie,
        If you can overlook the revealing picture at the top, I found this article to be very helpful 🙂

  9. Thank you, thank you for this! I had a couple of ants in the kitchen before our vacation, but when we came back they were everywhere. I’ve been cutting food on top of a cutting board on top of a cooling rack to make sure they aren’t crawling into the food. I definitely will try this, but first have to purchase corn syrup. Haven’t done that in years – ha!

  10. Karen Laurvick

    Curious..month the article and the first commeny.
    my sister has had a terrible ant infestation and finally called in an exterminator….twice.
    she was told that when you kill ants, it only brings more in.

    1. Karen,
      There’s a lot of discussion about that on my original post ( and some say exactly what you said, while others have killed AND LEFT the bodies, this seems to be key, and that’s actually part of the solution. ??? The poison kills them back in their colony, so that might be different from killing them on your counter. ?

  11. Lori Alexander

    I have an easier way! I haven’t had an ant problem in 17 years. All you do is get a piece of paper and lay the paper across the line of ants and smash as many as you can by running you hand across the paper. Move the paper along the line of ants smashing them. Leave the dead and alive ones there and the next day they will all be gone! It is amazing! The ones left alive pick up their dead buddies and don’t come back.

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