How to Get Rid of Ants Simply and Without Chemicals

Do you have a problem with ants? With kids, pets, and environmental concerns you may not want to use harsh chemicals to get rid of them and you don’t have to. There are several natural remedies for ants but this is my favorite because it’s cheap, easy, and safe.

Cornmeal. That’s it. Pour out a pile of cornmeal where you see ants coming in or near where you see them congregating outside, give it a few days to a week and your ant problem is history.

Simple way to get rid of ants without chemicals

How does this work? The ants will bring the cornmeal back to their colony like any other food item but eating it will kill them because they can’t digest it. This isn’t an instantaneous method, but it’s an effective one.

Regan is a New England native now living in Colorado with her husband and two sons. She is committed to living greener and is an advocate of cloth diapers, babywearing, breastfeeding, and intuitive parenting. She loves to read, cook, bake, write, and explore her new mountain home.

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  1. Alexis Bertch says

    We’ve had a solid week of rain here and I now have ants with eggs in my mailbox! I may try this! Thanks!

    • Regan says

      Oh yuck! It would work for the ants, I don’t what you could do for the eggs. Maybe pour salt on them? So gross, I hope you get it taken care of

    • Regan says

      Our house is right up against an open space and we have a lot of anthills on the hill leading up to it and they wander down to the house. I put a few piles of it outside around the house and on the hill and the problem has gotten quite a bit better. We also had a huge ant colony that seemed to be under our back deck and they’re gone now.

  2. says

    My husband bought some mulch that was infested with ants and spiders. This cornmeal method seemed to work very well because I haven’t seen many of the smaller ants.

    • Regan says

      I haven’t heard of using Borax but I may give it a try for the ants on the hill next to our house. We always have some on hand to soften the water in the dishwasher

      • Lynn B says

        We have terrible hard water and our glasses always have spots, does the Borax help with that? And how do you use it in the dishwasher?

        Thanks for the ant tip, I’ve pinned it as I know I’ll need it in the future! My mom found this all natural peppermint/wintergreen spray (for flying bugs) which she uses at her home that seems to work on ants and it’s safe for kids and pets. I like this idea better though.

        • says

          We sprinkled about a half cup in the bottom of the dishwasher before running it. You could so the same thing with Calgon powder. Honestly, Finish Quantum pods are helping more. The Borax was working for a while and then we were getting the awful hard water film back again but you could try the Borax and Calgon first to see if that helps since there are less chemicals.
          Regan recently posted..My Love Affair With Pocket Diapers is OverMy Profile

  3. Julie says

    I looked this up because I wanted to know why corn kills ants. I wondered if GMOs had anything to do with it since corn is so heavily engineered. The sites I looked up say that cornmeal doesn’t kill them, it just confuses their trails and gives them something to eat and that’s why they seem to disappear, at least for a while. Honestly though, I’m going to try it anyway. I just moved in to a house with a boat load of ants. We live next to an open field so that doesn’t help things! I’m so sick of finding ants all over everything and I don’t want to have to pay for an exterminator to come poison me and my babies. Thanks for the tip.

    • Regan says

      I have read several things from what you’ve read to that it kills them either by 1. being unable to digest it and they starve and 2. it expands in their stomach when they drink water and they explode. I can’t tell you if one or the other is correct as no one seems to really know but I do know that I have far less ants when I give them a big ole pile of cornmeal. Hopefully it works for you, too! :)

  4. Carissa Joslyn says

    I just moved into a new place on July 2nd and i’ve noticed I have ants in here! quite a bit of them, too! I’ll have to find where they’re coming in and try this! i have little kids and don’t want ants everywhere!

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