Selecting and collecting bass lures is almost as enjoyable as fishing them. But which lures catch the most bass? We broke down the top 5 best bass lures based on their proven ability to catch bass, their versatility, and the opinions of many professional bass fishermen.
If you’re looking for more information on a specific type of bass lure then select one of the categories from the lures menu above. Each lure category page is a complete resource on that particular style of lure, loaded with information and the best techniques to use.
Undoubtedly, number one is the rubber worm. No other bass lure is as versatile or more attractive to bass than a soft plastic worm. This is because they are so lifelike, and when engulfed by bass they feel like natural food. There are endless designs and dimensions, so you can choose the best size, style, and color for the conditions you’re fishing.
When you’re fishing plastic worms the key word is slow. Worm fishing is not for impatient anglers since every cast is retrieved a lot slower than with most other lures. When you fish a worm it’s all about the feel, so you need to keep your line tight for better sensitivity. When a bass hits you’ll feel a light thump through the rod handle and you’ll need to give a hard hookset. Setting the hook properly is essential in worm fishing.
There are many ways to effectively rig rubber worms, and how you choose a rig will be based on where the bass are holding. The most common worm rigs are the Texas rig, the Wacky rig, the Carolina rig, and the Drop Shot rig. They all play their role in worm fishing but of all the rigs, the Texas rig is the most common. This rig is completely weedless, making it a great choice for entering thick cover without getting hung up.
Most worm bites come as the bait is sinking. A highly effective retrieve is slowly lifting the rod tip up to make the worm swim towards the surface, then lowering the rod tip to allow the worm to sink naturally while reeling in the slack line. Bass will also grab a worm while it’s sitting on the bottom, so let it sit there for a couple seconds between rod raises.
Our Pick: The MAG II Worm made by Zoom Bait Company. To be a good worm fisherman you need to approach different fishing conditions with certain worms, but these ribbon tail worms are the classic style worm that have been used for decades. The best way to fish these is with a Texas rig, and you can get these worms and everything else you’ll need in this awesome Texas Rig Kit available on Amazon.
Spinnerbaits come in at number two because of their unique ability to attract bass while covering a lot of water at the same time. The fact that they are fairly weedless gives them a bump in the ranks as well.
With their odd appearance and unnatural retrieve action, it’s surprising to most beginners how effective they actually are. This is because when bass see a spinnerbait in action they’re only seeing the flash from the blade and the movement.
Their odd appearance consists of shiny or colored spinning blades dangling from an opened safety pin design. On the other end of the thin wire framework is a lead head of varying weight, combined with a sharp hook. A soft rubber skirt covers the main hook and a trailer hook is often added to get those bass that come up short of striking the main hook.
The most popular spinnerbait sizes range between 1/4 ounces and 3/4 ounces, with the most common blades being the Willow blade, the Colorado blade and the Indiana blade. Based on the speed at which the spinnerbait is retrieved in the water, the blades spin furiously and flash wildly. This helps to create commotion in the water that bass can see, hear, and feel. The blades also help to keep the hook weedless.
There are many ways to fish a spinnerbait but they are most often reeled in a straight retrieve. Breaking up the repetitiveness of the action with a jerk from time to time can help trigger strikes. Also try letting the bait “flutter,” meaning let the spinnerbait sink so that the blades spin naturally.
Our Pick: The Pond Magic Spinnerbait made by Booyah Bait Company. It’s on the smaller side by spinnerbait standards at 3/16 oz., but smaller spinnerbaits tend to get way more strikes. It comes in 11 different colors and is equipped with a willow blade that gives off a nice flash and vibration.
3. Bass Jigs
While bass jigs are highly effective all year round, being successful with them requires a higher skill level compared to most other lures. Jigs are not the easiest bait to fish but they produce too many trophy-sized bass to not be in the top five. In fact, jigs are very well known for being the best lure for catching big bass.
Jig fishing for bass is most often done using short-range flipping and pitching techniques, rather than long distance casting. It’s all about accuracy and soft entry. This can be challenging for inexperienced anglers, but once you get comfortable you’re in for some big bites.
There are a tremendous variety of jig heads, skirts, colors, and jig-and-trailer combinations to choose from, but the most important aspect of a jig is the weight. Jig fishing is all about getting to the bottom and staying there. Once there, it’s dragged and hopped along the bottom to imitate a crawfish.
Bass will often take a jig while its sinking, maybe even more often than when it’s sitting on the bottom. The rate at which it sinks and the action it gives off in the process are the two key elements that trigger strikes. You should always add a trailer to the jig to help enhance the action. You’ll hardly ever see someone fish a jig without a trailer.
Our Pick: The Original BiCO Jig, a 3/8 oz bass jig made by BiCO Performance Jigs. We picked these jigs because they are so versatile. You can cover a large spectrum of jig fishing with this one jig. Whether your flipping and pitching, skipping under trees and docks, or using it as a swim jig, it will excel using all those techniques. The jigs are also lead-free, built with Owner Hooks, and made in the USA, so the quality is unmatched.
This is another lure that can also cover a large area of water in a short amount of time. Crankbaits are a versatile option and can be effective in a wide variety of environments. In fact, they are Pro Fisherman Kevin Vandam’s go-to bait under most conditions.
Crankbaits come in various sizes, shapes, weights, and running depths. The correct selection of specifications depends mainly on the depth of water you’re fishing. More so than with other bass lures, making the right crankbait choice plays an important role in determining fishing success.
This is because much of crankbait fishing is simply casting and reeling in a straight retrieve. It’s selecting the right diving depth and color that triggers the strikes. And although a straight retrieve catches bass, you should jerk the rod tip randomly during the retrieve to give the lure some erratic action. Also see lipless crankbaits.
Our Pick: The Square Bill Crankbait made by Strike King. If you’re going to take crankbait fishing seriously you can’t just own one of them, but you do have to start somewhere. This bait will cover most waters, more so on the shallow side. This is your classic mid-to-shallow diving crankbait (3 to 6 feet). Its available in 3 sizes and a variety of different colors.
In bass fishing, little can compare to the enjoyment an angler gets when seeing a bass leap out of the water in an attempt to engulf their bait. Topwater lures are not only effective but extremely fun to use, which are two reasons they make the top five.
These lures are designed to ripple the water’s surface, causing popping and splashing sounds as the lure is retrieved. The purpose is to create the appearance of prey in distress in other words–, an easy meal.
The biggest downside of topwater lures is that they are often missed by bass charging up from below. For this reason, you don’t want to retrieve the lure too fast. Also, when a bass does explode on your lure, don’t set the hook immediately. Give the bass a second or two to get a good bite on it.
There are plenty of weedless topwaters but most of the hard baits are typically fitted with treble hooks. They are most effective when cast around the edges of cover like grass, stumps, and shorelines, but can also be good in open water if the conditions are right.
Topwater fishing is at its best in low light conditions, like early morning, late afternoon/night, or on an overcast day. The wind can be an important factor as well. A bass will be able to see a topwater lure much easier on a calm day than if there’s some chop on the water. Take this into consideration when selecting color and size.
Our Pick: The Pop-R made by Rebel. If you have to choose one topwater it should be a popper, and this model is one of the longest running poppers out there. Pop-R’s are easy to use and can be worked super slow or fast. You can also cast them a mile because of the way they are shaped. Work this slow in late summer afternoons for some great topwater action.
Bass Fishing & Lure Selection
The thoughts and opinions on what bass fishing lures are the best will vary from angler to angler. Bass fishing is a mental sport and a ton of what makes a lure great for a particular angler is the amount of confidence he or she has in it. There’s a big difference between fishing and casting, because a cast without confidence is not really fishing.
Black bass are the most sought-after gamefish in the United States, and are number one in terms of how much money is spent on equipment for them. In fact, more tackle is made for bass fishing than for any other species of fish. This has led to amazing developments of all sorts of fishing gear, many of which have had a special focus on the advancement of largemouth and smallmouth bass fishing lures.
There are new lure designs constantly being produced but they don’t usually last long. The core list of classic lures have been running the show in the world of bass fishing for decades. It’s as if every lure design possible has been designed, tested, and narrowed down to this core list. Of course a lot of the new lures are designed more to entice bass anglers rather than bass.
Cost vs Confidence
Some lures will have a similar appearance and action as others but with significantly different prices. For instance, a Lucky Craft crankbait is always going to be more expensive than a Bomber crankbait, but an angler can be successful fishing with either one, especially if they have confidence in it.
That’s one of the main attractions of bass fishing– it can be as modest or complicated as you want it to be. It is definitely possible to successfully catch bass with nothing more than a single fishing rod and cheap tackle from the shore. Or, you can have a nice fiberglass bass boat loaded with multiple high end rods and top-of-the-line tackle. The angler who understands his tackle and focuses on technique is the one who will have the most success.
Choosing The Best Types of Bass Lures
It’s great that bass fishermen have such a wide variety of lures available to them, but it also creates countless forks in the roads when trying to decide which to use. This is especially true for beginners selecting lures.
That is the purpose of this website, to help you wade through the thousands of bass lures out there, and select the ones that are going to be best for you and the conditions you are fishing. This information is aimed at bass anglers of all skill levels.
The lures discussed on this website have been successfully catching bass and winning tournaments for decades. The goal is to provide unbiased information from experienced bass fishermen. Hopefully, with the information from this site, you can find the best lures for your style of bass fishing.