How Does Baking Soda Kill Roaches? | Plus Homemade Recipe

There are numerous ways to kill the roaches in your home, and some of the most effective methods are also some of the simplest. One of the easiest ways to get rid of roaches is to attract them with something sweet, such as sugar, and mix that sugar with something that is known to kill them, such as baking soda.

A mixture of baking soda and sugar is the perfect way to get rid of the roaches in your home, and the recipe is easy

The Perfect Baking Soda and Sugar recipe to kill roaches

To try this method, simply mix equal parts of baking soda and white granulated sugar. You can also add a touch of powdered yeast or powdered vitamin C if you like, but this is not necessary.

Take some used jar lids, small plates, or small plastic containers and put the mixture in there, then put the container anywhere you have spotted roaches, such as around plumbing pipes, behind electrical outlets, or somewhere in the corners of your kitchen counter.

While this is effective, you’ll have to check the containers every few days in case you need to fill them up again. And if you’re wondering how it works, it’s really very simple. First, the smell of the sugar attracts the roaches, then they eat the sugar-baking soda mixture, and it’s the baking soda that kills them.

This is because when roaches eat the baking soda, it starts to expand immediately. A roach’s exoskeleton is unable to stretch to accommodate the baking soda, so the mixture kills the roach almost immediately.

It’s important that you do not add vinegar to this mixture, as some recipes suggest. This is because vinegar quickly soaks up the baking soda and emits a strong odor, which roaches hate.

Roaches have a delicate sense of smell, and they will steer clear of the baking soda mixture as long as it has vinegar in it. It’s important to remember that baking soda and sugar are all you need in order to devise a mixture that is extremely effective at killing cockroaches.

Mix the baking powder and sugar together thoroughly.

Can You Use Baking Powder Instead?

Baking powder is simply baking soda that has been added to some type of dry acid, normally either cream of tartar or cornstarch. Baking powder is not usually as effective as baking soda when trying to kill roaches, but keep in mind that neither of these will do you any good if you don’t add some type of sweet product to the mixture.

It is the baking soda itself that kills the cockroaches, and since baking powder contains this soda, it is effective at eliminating your roaches. The mixture just has to have baking soda in it in order for the roaches to die.

Baking soda crushes the roaches’ internal organs and causes the exoskeleton to crack. Usually, the roaches die because they are unable to move and therefore they are unable to get anything to eat.

It doesn’t always happen immediately, depending on the size of the roach and the amount of baking soda in your mixture. But the fact is that this baking soda and sugar mixture does work, as long as you don’t forget that it’s the sugar that will attract the roaches to it in the first place.

Can You Add Other Items to the Baking Soda?

One of the things you can add to the baking soda if you don’t want to use sugar is a chopped-up yellow onion.

Technically, you can use any type of onion, but yellow onions tend to work best because they are thick and sticky. They mask the odor of the baking soda, which roaches will avoid on its own.

Yellow onions also have very little water content, which means that they will not activate the baking soda too soon. Remember that you want the baking soda to activate after the roaches have eaten it.

If you use onions, make sure that you pat them dry before combining them with the baking soda. Why? Because it takes water or liquid to activate the baking soda, and again, you don’t want the baking soda being activated too soon.

It usually takes the average cockroach between 12 and 24 hours (the average is 15 hours) to die. Each situation is different, but it usually takes hours or even days for the roaches to die from this mixture.

Place the dish in a dark cupboard. You can use this mix instead of the normal cockroach traps.

But rest assured that they will indeed die from it. The roaches die because they essentially become paralyzed and are unable to fend for themselves. They’ll either starve to death or get attacked and eaten by one of their predators. Still, even if you notice that a roach is paralyzed and unable to move, you can get rid of it immediately.

The important thing to remember is that the baking soda alone won’t lure them in, which is why you need something such as sugar or onions to attract them. Afterwards, however, it’s the baking soda that allows them to meet their demise.


Cockroaches are some of the most difficult pests to get rid of because they are so sturdy and because over time, they have become more resistant to certain types of pesticides. Nevertheless, there are still effective ways to kill roaches, and baking soda is a great option.

You can mix the baking soda with numerous items, but sugar is a very popular one because the combination of sugar and baking soda is so effective at killing the roaches. While it doesn’t kill them quickly, it does eventually do so.

Make sure that you put this mixture out anywhere you’ve seen roaches in the past. If the roaches don’t see it, they won’t eat it, and they have to eat it for the process to work.

The bottom line is this: if you follow all of the rules and tips to setting up these concoctions in the right places, you’ll be rid of your pesky roaches in a very short period of time, and it will be very simple and inexpensive on your part.