What is Borax? “Borax is used in various household laundry and cleaning products, including the “20 Mule Team Borax” laundry booster and “Boraxo” powdered hand soap.”Wikipedia

How does Borax kill ants? The ants carry it back to their nests to share it with the other ants. When the ants actually start to eat the Borax, boric acid causes them to get really gassy (gas builds up inside their bodies). Ants don’t get rid of gas like we do, so they eventually die because they can’t expel the gas.

Here’s the formula

  • Mix 1/2 cup white sugar, 3 tablespoons of Borax powder and just enough water to make a paste.
  • Stir the mixture until it’s a smooth paste (keep it in a jar).
  • When you’re ready to use it, smear a few teaspoons of paste in a shallow dish.
  • Leave the dish where you’ve seen the ants.
  • They will find it.
  • Resist the urge to squish them all. Let them carry the poison back to the nest.

I’ve also heard of just adding a few tablespoons of Borax powder to jam or jelly and spreading it around on a dish or lid.

Please comment below and let me know if you’ve had any success with either of these.


  1. Ashley says:

    Using a spoon, spatula, fork, whisk, plastic toy or whatever else you might use for stirring mix the borax and sugar together really good. Remove or crush any large clumps so that the mixture is a fine powder. This is a key step in the process, as you don t want any part of the mixture to contain too much borax and too little sugar. The ants will be after the sugar and you want the fine borax powder to seem like it is part of the sugar.

  2. Roni Ballew says:

    This recipe for mixing Borax with sugar and water doesn’t make a paste – it makes a liquid. When you add 3 cups of water, it completely dissolves the sugar and Borax. will the liquid still work effectively?

    • Mike Benny says:

      Hi Roni,

      Thank you for your comment! You’re right, 3 cups of water makes it way too watery. I’m going to adjust the proportions to make it more of a paste. A lot of people just mix the Borax with syrup or honey to make a paste. Generally, the idea is to get the ants to eat the Borax (the poison), so we add sugar and water (or syrup or honey) to make it tasty. Please let me know if you have any luck with this (or even if it doesn’t work). GOOD LUCK!

      • Mike Benny says:

        Hi Susan,

        This recipe has been edited. The previous comment was posted when it used to say “3 cups” of water. 🙂

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