How to Get Rid of Cockroaches in Kitchen Cabinets

  • The cockroach problem happens in many households, even in families where house spaces are clean and well cared for. Unfortunately, roach infestations in the kitchen can negatively influence our happiest family moments, i.e., shared meals, and put in danger your and your closest ones’ health. 
  • This article will discover how to get rid of cockroaches in kitchen cabinets.
  • Down below, we’re sharing ways to repel roaches from their hiding places in the kitchen cabinet and get rid of these obnoxious bugs once forever.

Why do cockroaches love kitchen cabinets?

Before we find out how to get rid of cockroaches in kitchen cabinets, let’s think for a second about what makes them come in the first place. 

In general, cockroaches are attracted to your home by the smell of food, so think how much they love your kitchen. 

The things that cockroaches fancy eating most are:

  • sugar,
  • starch,
  • grease,
  • cheese,
  • meat,
  • garbage;

Any of those in your kitchen cabinets? Well, so now you know why they love to be around!

These pests are also lured by rotting fruits and vegetables that give off a pungent smell. If you leave dirty dishes or food sources not properly covered for too long, you may attract cockroaches to inhabit your household. 

So while sweets, starches, and animal proteins are among roaches’ favorite foods, they will also become crazy for greasy food, cheese, or anything moldy or fermented. 

Keeping surfaces clean and ensuring food is properly covered is a must. 

So keep sugary foods in airtight containers, wipe down your counter for bread and any other crumbs left behind, and always clean up your meat prep stations.

Ensure your food items have proper storage (for example, in plastic containers) to avoid cockroaches getting easily to them. 

Get rid of dirty dishes as fast as possible, and immediately clean any spilled food on your kitchen counter. 

Important: Cockroaches are known to access your house by traveling through drain pipes. So it’s highly likely that they will infest indoor areas by using your kitchen sink drain outlets. After accessing your food items unseen, cockroaches hide back in the drain outlets. 

Also, cockroaches love dog and cat food. So don’t leave pet food out throughout the day if you have pets and want to get rid of cockroaches. 

Instead, feed your pet twice a day, and pick the pet food up when they are done eating.

Moreover, roaches love that our cabinets are dark and secluded. 

Cockroaches desire nothing more than having their hidden, little “cockroach households,” hidden from your sight, and at the same time, nearby your food.  

With plenty of tiny cracks and crevices that allow them to slip their little slender, flat bodies into to hide—kitchen cabinets are roaches’ ideal hideouts.

Important: There is no such thing as one cockroach. If you saw one American cockroach (or any other type of cockroach), you can be sure other cockroaches are walking around and waiting for you to leave the house so they can have a foody blast. One cockroach signifies an already existing or potential infestation; these insects typically don’t exist alone. 

Dangers of cockroach infestation

The aesthetic aspect of having a roach problem at home is one thing. No one likes roaches, bed bugs, or other pests to crawl around as nothing happened. 

Keep in mind that having cockroaches in kitchen cabinets brings an actual threat to people’s health. 

Cockroach control is necessary to keep your home protected. 

What are the dangers mentioned above? Let’s have a look:

1. disease pathogens

Unfortunately, cockroaches are a type of pest that carries diseases. 

More so, they are amongst the deadliest pests when it comes to carrying disease pathogens. 

Roaches are able to infect people with 

  • dysentery, 
  • cholera, 
  • salmonella, 
  • gastroenteritis, 
  • typhoid fever, and many other dangerous ailments;

2. asthma and allergies

Asthma and allergies are plagues of our century.

Here’s the sad news: Cockroaches send allergens into the air in the form of saliva, feces, and shedding body parts. 

These pieces can irritate our respiratory systems, especially if we already suffer from allergies or asthma.

3. food contamination

The two above were more general threats related to a roach infestation.

The situation gets even worse when dealing with these pests in our kitchen cabinets.

In addition to spreading the disease and causing allergies and asthma, roaches can also contaminate your food and water supplies with germs. 

Ingesting anything they’ve contaminated can make you very sick.

Important: If you neglect the roach problem in your kitchen, you’re at risk of food poisoning.

Eliminate cockroaches from your kitchen cabinets

Discovering that you have roaches in your kitchen cabinets can be an ordeal.

You know the dangers, and you’re aware that you have to do something immediately!

How to remove cockroaches from your kitchen cabinets for good? 

For starters, take care of thorough kitchen cleaning and basic mobile adjustment.

In the kitchen cabinets, first, eliminate cockroaches’ hiding spots with the help of a regular caulk and caulking gun. The goal is to destroy any place your dear little friends may consider cozy and homey. 

Deal also with leaking pipes if you notice any. Moisture attracts roaches, so leaking pipes make cockroach infestation much more likely. 

After you make sure that there aren’t any leaks in your kitchen and roaches are deprived of water, lay down a gel-based roach killer. It will attract them stronger due to water not being available.

Block entry points that roaches often get inside your home through. Any cracks and crevices aren’t wanted in your household: seal cracks and crevices with weather-stripping, spray foam, or caulking.

Pest control professional

We can’t stress enough that pest control professional service is your best cockroach control decision.

They bring years of experience and proper equipment to the table. So, for example, these folks know very well where to find cockroaches because they have been studying their usual hiding spots for years.

Roach can’t hide as efficiently as a bed bug, but the former is also very adept at staying out of view. 

Professionals know where to look for them and can kill roaches without problems. 


There is a couple of smells able to keep roaches away.

Spread these scents if you suspect that cockroaches or other insects can hide in your kitchen cabinet:

  • peppermint oil, 
  • cedarwood oil, and 
  • cypress oil;

Essential oils are a well-known method to keep cockroaches at bay. 

These insects also hate the smell of:

  • crushed bay leaves, and 
  • coffee grounds;

Bay leaves are natural roach repellents. Though bay leaves don’t kill these insects, cockroaches genuinely hate the smell and will steer away from it. So just stick them in the cabinets and let them do the work.

Important: Smells are not a method for killing roaches but keeping them away. It means that pests will leave this place and go to a different one. 

Other ways to deal with a cockroach infestation

Let’s review a few anti-roaches solutions to get more knowledge about dealing with infested areas:

  1. water and soap spray

It’s as simple as it sounds—try out easy water and dish soap mixture. It will dry the roaches out and kill these nasty bugs. 

All you have to do is mix equal parts in the spray bottle and track roaches down in their hiding places.

  1. Insect Growth Regulator (IGRs)

Another way to eradicate existing roaches is Insect Growth Regulator (IGRs).

These are chemical substances that break the life cycle of the roach. IGRs prevent immature cockroaches from reaching their full potential by interfering with the nymphs’ molting process and reproductive development. In other words, this product stands in the way of letting these insects become adult cockroaches. IGRs do not directly kill the cockroaches.

 Common product names are Gentrol, Nygard, Surge, and Archer.

  1. cockroach bait

Cockroach baits consist of food attractive to cockroaches and a slow-acting insecticide. 

Their vomit and feces they produce (super gross, we know!) will contain small amounts of the insecticide. 

The young cockroaches feed on the feces and vomit of adult cockroaches, so they will also unwittingly consume the insecticide.

  1. aerosol pesticide

Aerosol pesticide is an effective way to kill cockroaches. 

When the cockroaches or other pests are sprayed with cockroach spray, they absorb it through the skin. As a result, chemicals strike their bodies, causing a knockdown effect, preventing nerves from transmitting signals or messages—leading to paralysis and death. 

Chemicals are harmful to cockroaches, but they aren’t to human beings. It’s because our metabolism and excretion process is fast, and such a small amount of chemicals doesn’t affect us in any way. 

Important: Never spray these products on your skin or consume them as it can lead to hazardous consequences!

Cockroaches have a difficult-to-penetrate hard waxy cuticle. A regular type of aerosol spray tends to be water-based, so the droplets would sit on the surface of the cockroach without penetrating the cuticle (or doing so very slowly). As a result, the product seems not to work on the cockroaches, and they simply run off to hide after spraying. 

Yet, an aerosol spray against crawling insects is specifically designed to work on cockroaches. They are solvent-based and produce large droplets, so when they hit a cockroach, they quickly spread across the waxy surface and penetrate the cuticle, getting the insecticide inside the insect for a “quick kill.”

Mind that cockroach breathe through small openings in their body called spiracles. When these breathing pores are additionally clogged with pest control chemical solution, it’s more than likely that they will die in an instant. 

Important: After some time, most common household cockroaches can develop a “cross-resistance” to multiple types of chemicals.

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Frequently Asked Questions

A readily-available laundry product that we often have at home and that is able to kill cockroaches is a borax powder (boric acid). Combine equal parts borax and white table sugar for the best mixture against these pests. Place it where you've recently seen roach activity. Borax will dehydrate and kill cockroaches instantly after they consume it.
Luckily, cockroaches aren't likely to bite living humans. The only case may be the extreme infestation when the cockroach population is so large that food becomes limited. But cockroaches would not bite humans with average infestations, having other food sources such as garbage cans or exposed food.
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