10 Cheap Homemade Natural Deer Attractant Ideas

Whether you want the deer for hunting or for observation, having a deer attractant is a surefire way to draw the animals towards you.

Thankfully, the market is saturated with deer attractants of all kinds, from different manufacturers, and with different price tags. But with the shambles in the economy, most of us hunters might find it hard to come up with a budget for the store attractants.

The fact that these attractants are expensive does not mean that you cannot attract the deer. You can learn how to come up with your own, homemade deer attractants that work wonders. But using a deer feeder is the best option available.

In this post, we will introduce to you the top TEN cheapest deer attractants that you can make from the comfort of your home.

Top 3 Store Bought Deer Attractant

NOTE: Most of the homemade deer attractants we are going to introduce to you below have been shown to work even better compared to the commercial ones.

Let’s dive into our list of the ten most effective deer attractants that you can make at home:

1. Food Plot

One of the best ways to attract that deer to your area is by setting up a food plot. If there’s one method that hunters enjoy luring the deer without much effort, it’s through setting up the food plot.

When putting up the plot, however, you need to keep few things in mind. For example, ensure you don’t choose an open location as the animals rarely favor such areas. And if they do, they don’t spend much time there. Place your plot in an area with natural cover- e.g. bushes and woods for the best results.

How to prepare your food plot correctly? Let’s look at this next…

Before you start this project, you need to have these things:

  • Homemade deer foods
  • Doe scent
  • 3-4 apples
  • Acorns
  • Plain salt- 1 pound

Creating the food plot:

  • Pick an ideal location for the setup. The location should be at least a mile from the roads. As we have said earlier, the spot should also feature natural cover e.g. cedar, pine woods.
  • Using your foot, scrape back all the leaves and any other litter present on the ground. The patch of land you clean should be at least 5-feet x 5-feet.
  • Next, you ought to scatter your homemade feed over the area, making sure not to pour it into the center.
  • Now spread the plain salt over the food- the salt should be just enough to cover the area lightly. Given that the salt will dissolve into the soil when it rains, the deer will keep coming back even after the feed is depleted.
  • Cut the apples into halves, and spread them together with the acorns, around your food plot area. The apple scent alone attracts the deer to your plot like a charm!
  • Finally, put a few drops of the doe scent around the edges of your plot to help conceal your scent.

Some additional tips on how to maintain your food plot:

  • Leave it undisturbed for at least a week to prevent the deer from becoming suspicious
  • Replenish the food once every month
  • Add fresh salt after every six months

2. Peanut Butter Deer Attractant

It’s a well-known fact that deer love peanut butter, making it excellent bait. You can use it alone or in a mixture to lure the deer into your spot for hunting or for watching. And the fact that peanut butter is cheap makes this homemade another cheap alternative to the commercial attractants.

  • Open the big jar of peanut butter- the crunchy type works better.
  • Securely screw the lid of this deer attract to the tree- in a high traffic deer route and about 4-5 feet above the ground.
  • Now turn the jar back to the lid. With the aid of utility knife, cut the bottom part of the peanut butter jar. This gives you miraculous deer attractant!

3 Homemade Deer Attractant from a Mixture of Foods

As we have stated above, you can also use the peanut butter in a mix to come up with another effective homemade deer attractant. Here’s how to do it:

First of all, you need the following things:

  • Bucket/bowl
  • water
  • Molasses or simple syrup
  • Rotten fruit
  • Corn
  • And apparently, peanut butter

Follow these steps to make a miraculous deer attractant out of the above items:

  • Mix the dry ingredients thoroughly- you can use the peanut butter, corn, and fruit in a combination of your choice
  • Next, add the sticky substance so the mixture. To ensure that your mixture stays together, add molasses or any simple syrup over it
  • Add water to aid in spreading the mixture around easily, in addition to diluting it so that it become more
  • That’s it. Your mixture is ready to attract the deer! Simply paint it on the trees at the level of the deer’s eye. You can also put some of the mixture n the ground and on tree stumps.

Important note:

Make sure you apply an adequate amount of this attractant to ensure that the string odor can attract the deer from far. It also ensures that the deer will spend a longer period at the spot feeding on it.

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4. Saltwater

This is not a joke! Saltwater has been proved to make the deer go bonkers. This is the cheapest homemade attractant we have introduced to you so far and requires only water and salt which are available in your kitchen.

Now, to come up with a saltwater deer attractant, you simply need to fill a 5-gallon bucket with clean water and add salt to it until it can't take any more (that is, the water becomes overly saturated with salt).

Proceed to pour this ‘magic water’ on the tree stumps, on the ground and wait for the results. You’ll be pretty overwhelmed by the rate at which the animals will turn up to your spot!

You can also create a salt lick that promotes better health and growth of antlers in the deer. Check this video for more information:

5. Acorn Scent

We’re halfway our list of the best and the cheapest homemade natural deer attractants. At this position, we will show you how to make acorn scent- another secret for driving the deer crazy.

Not only does acorn scent help attract these animals your way but it also helps mask your scent so that they don’t sense your presence and flee.

Making acorn scent does not require you to spend a dime. You only need several kitchen tools below:

  • Acorn
  • Pot
  • Stove
  • Water
  • Potato mashes or the muddling stick
  • Container
  • Spray bottle
  • Fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth

Follow these steps to make the acorn scent deer attractant:

  • Gather up to one pound of acorns from the ground while out scouting the for the deer trails
  • Place the acorns in the pot and cover with water. Put the pot on the stove to boil the acorns for close to 30 minutes until they feel soft.
  • Smash the acorns using the muddling stick or the potato masher. Turn on the stove and bill the acorns again- until the water in the port turns extremely dark brown.
  • Strain the corns into another container using the cheesecloth or some fine mesh strainer.

Pour the acorn water into the spray bottle and use it to spray around your hunting location. This spray will last for around 30 days, after which you need to spray again.

6. Apple Deer Lick

Deer licks are simply blocks of salt used to attract the wild deer looking for a quick source of nutrients. If you can’t afford the store salt block, you can make your apple-flavored lick using simple, cheap ingredients as explained below:

Things you will need:

  • Approx. 10 gallons bucket
  • One 50lb bag of trace minerals
  • One 50lb bag of stock salt
  • One 50lb bag of dicalcium phosphate
  • 10lbs apples
  • Empty 3lb coffee can
  • A large 18oz molasses container


  • Cut all the apples into big chunks- don’t core or peel the apples
  • Boil a gallon of water in a huge pot, add the apple pieces and stir the mixture
  • Simmer the mixture until the apples feel soft to mushy
  • In the large container, put two 3lb coffee cans of dicalcium phosphate, two 3lb cans stock salt, and four 3lb cans trace of minerals. Stir the mixture completely using a broomstick or anything else that will get the job done
  • Combine the apple and the mineral mixture and stir again completely
  • Add molasses to the mix. Add two extra gallons of lukewarm water. Stir thoroughly once more.

Your apple deer lick is now ready for use.

Place it to your hunting spot, where it’s legal to dig. Dig a pit that’s approx. 1-feet deep and 3-4feed wide. Pour the lick and mix in half of the dirt that came out of the pit and blend them thoroughly. In case it rains, visit the area to check the consistency.

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7. Deer Scent Stick

Ever come across a homemade deer scent stick? No? No worries. I’ll show you how to come up with one. It’s good to note that the deer scent stick acts as a kind of incense that attracts the bucks to your spot for easy hunting or observation.

Things you will need to come up with your scent stick include:

  • Coconut oil
  • Doe urine
  • Glass bowl
  • Disposable stirring stick
  • Polysorbate 20
  • Unscented incense sticks
  • Plastic baggy- 12-inch long

Now let me show you how to make your scent stick for attracting the deer today!

  • Start by adding 2oz of coconut oil and doe urine into a 2-quart glass bowl (the two items will separate and not blend)
  • Add two teaspoonfuls of the Polysorbate 20 to the glass to make the two ingredients combine easily. You can easily find this ingredient in the craft and hobby stores or even online
  • Mix the bowl contents thoroughly such that they blend completely. The resulting mixture creates a potent-smelling concoction.
  • Empty the urine mixture into the plastic baggy, and dip around 12 unscented incense sticks in the bag (with the powdered ends facing downwards).
  • Seal the above setup thoroughly. Let the baggy sit upright in a dish for up to 3weeks- to allow the sticks enough time to absorb the potent scent fully.

When the sticks are ready for use, simply stick them around the hunting camp. The scent wafts from them, thus attracting the animals.

Avoid lighting the sticks!

8. Vanilla Extract

Pure vanilla extract has also been employed for ages to help attract the deer. And guess what? It also works wonders. Using vanilla is as simple as spraying this flavoring on the trees, stumps, around your stand wait for it to draw the deer.

Alternatively, you can use it alongside peanut butter to maximize its effectiveness.

Bearing in mind that vanilla is readily available at a cheap price, this homemade attractant will not break your bank too.

9. You Can Also Make a Deer Mineral Attractant…

Homemade deer mineral attractant offers you an inexpensive alternative to the commercially processed minerals. The three ingredients needed to make this attractant are readily available at your local farm supply store. Best of all, you can customize this attractant based on your particular soil composition.

The ingredients needed for this process include:

  • 50-pound bag of the dicalcium phosphate (useful for weight gain, food digestion)
  • Two 50-pound bags of trace mineral salt- should contain no medication
  • One 50-pound bag of stock salt/ ice cream salt (this one attracts the deer and keeps them coming again and again)


  • Empty all the fur bags- totals to 200pounds of the mineral attractant- into a barrel and mix them thoroughly.
  • When the mixture is ready, spread it over stumps as well as other vegetation
  • You can also dig a hole (around 6 inches deep) and mix the mixture into the soil.

Be sure to replace this attractant after every 4-6 months (or as necessary).

Watch this video for more details on making a deer mineral lick: 

10. Peanut Butter and Apple Mixture

Last but not least, you can use apples and peanut butter to make a strong attractant for the deer.

This method has been explained below:

  • Cut the apples into slices. Cut the slices into smaller pieces and place them in a bowl
  • Spoon a few heaping scoops of the peanut butter into the bowl and mix all the contents together until you achieve a sticky substance.

Finally, put the mixture into your desired hunting spot to attract the deer. You can smear the trunks of several trees around your hunting area or even fill your deer feeder.

Final Thoughts

If you can’t afford the store deer attractants, don’t lose hope yet. You can easily make deer attractants from your home, using readily available materials. Our list above provides you with the best homemade attractants that drive these animals crazy. These homemade varieties can also be used to supplement the commercial food for the deer.

Follow our guide above on how to come up with the most effective deer attractants and you will have some fun time attracting the deer to your spot.

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Last update on 2022-02-28 at 07:05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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