5 Best Lures for Smallmouth Bass

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Hey there my fellow fishing enthusiasts and welcome to my post covering my 5 best lures for Smallmouth Bass this year. For those of you who are not familiar with lures, they are considered an extremely popular option when it comes to fishing for Smallmouth with many using them exclusively over live bait.

However, as with most of the items we use for fishing, there are many different types and variations that can make things confusing when it comes to choosing the right one so grab your rod and let’s check my 5 recommended lures for Smallmouth Bass fishing below…

5 recommended lures for Smallmouth Bass

I will review these in more detail below but if you just want to get to sitting without all the carry on, my 5 options are listed here for your convenience:

02/18/2024 11:55 am GMT Lasso Brag

Types of Lures

As mentioned above, there are a few options to choose from when it comes to fishing lures for Smallmouth Bass. So before we get into it, I will just run through some of those variations below:

Soft Plastics

Soft Plastics comprise a plastic-looking body that is attached to a lead ‘sinker’ (known as a jig head) with a hook attached. The advantage here is that these can be made to look like any type of natural bait that will attract a good Smallmouth such as worms, tubes, grubs and spiders. The lure is cast and slowly retrieved in a jigging motion (hence the name) to attract fish to it. Some plastics are even coated with a smelly ‘liquid’ to enhance fish attraction.

To be honest, apart from Bass, there are not many species that will not take a soft plastic and I love these for drifting as well.

Blade Baits

These are fairly straightforward lures made of shiny metal usually with a reflective tape or glittery paint down the side and a three-pronged hook at the bottom front and back. I had always known them as ‘spoons’ however they are probably best described as a hybrid between a spoon used in the surf and a flat jerkbait.

They work in a fast cast and retrieve option designed to mimic fast-moving baitfish. Smallmouth like to chase these in running waters.

Bladed Jigs

Bladed Bass Jigs are great for those chasing Smallmouth in their favored habitats along rocky areas near banks, under ledges or in amongst other structures. As they are dragged along, they make short flips or jumps either over or under the structure to attract the fish hiding underneath with added vibration and flashing light from the blade attached. They will also sink if left still to make them visible to fish hiding under ledges as well.

In general terms, they use a lead jig head – similar to those used with soft plastics – with extra flaps and appendages attached to which not only attract fish, but make them less susceptible to snags too which is why they work so well within structure.

lures for smallmouth bass - smallmouth with lure


These are long slender bait fish looking lures usually with a plastic flap at the front that looks a little like a duckbill. Their design is that they tend to float around the surface and then once the line is retrieved, will dive down to the bottom (via the duckbill) twitching and jigging around along the way.

When retrieving the line with these you can usually feel a vibration in the line as well which is also a fish attractant design. Their bright colours and vibrating movement make these good for chasing Smallmouth in murkier waters too.


In faster moving waters such as rivers and creeks, Smallmouth often feed off of small baitfish and even insects on the surface (which is why fly-fishing is a common pastime for these species as well). Poppers are designed to ‘skip’ across the surface of the water simulating a distressed or injured baitfish.

Many know these as topwater lures and are a popular choice for many Bass fishers. They are easily identified by their concave ‘faces’ which work against the surface of the water to cause the jumping and twitching action that attract hungry fish.

What should you be looking for?

Now, this is where the fun starts because many of these lures will work on many different types of fish. Regardless, as you look to purchase your own lures, below are some things that you may want to consider when using lures for Smallmouth Bass:

Where the fish are – We have touched on this above however the type of lure you choose can depend on where you are trying to catch your fish. For example if you are looking to cast and retrieve, then soft plastics, blade and jerkbaits will work well. Alternatively, if you are close to the bank and looking for fish along the edges, then bladed bass jigs will be the go.

lures for smallmouth bass - smallmouth with soft plastic

Weight requirements – Each of the lure types above are available in a number of different weights. Lure weights are important for a number of reasons including:

  • Heavier weights can be cast a little further.
  • Heavier weights will anchor and drag on the bottom more effectively.
  • Lighter weights are easier to jig and ‘flick’ around.
  • Lighter jerk bait lures will float better than their heavier counterparts.

Again, do your research into the environment that you are fishing in. Those fishing for Smallmouth Bass tend to use lighter and smaller lures and these will also work well If you are working in shallower waters. Heaver lures may be needed in deeper areas or in streams where current is stronger however they will ‘catch’ on the bottom a lot more often if you are drifting.

If I am planning to cast and retrieve then I usually purchase the same lure in a couple of different weight sizes and will go to a heaver option if I am not able to reach where the fish are on casting.

Rod specifications – The next consideration (and a very important one) is to ensure that any lure you use fits within the specification details of your Bass fishing rod. In some cases, rod specs include a lure or tackle weight which is the highest designated weight that the rod can handle.

In most cases, however, you are going to be looking at this from the power rating of the rod. In simple language, I have always known the power rating as a measure of how ‘bendy’ it is. Light power rods bend with little force and heavy ones need a lot of pressure to bend. So, in short:

  • Light – very bendy – even whippy – will bend a lot with even the smallest fish. Use these for light jiggy lures only.
  • Medium – needs a bit more pressure to bend – In general, this is a good measure for all-round use with light to medium-weighted lures.
  • Heavy – takes a lot to make it bend – I would recommend these for areas where the current is quite strong or you want to use particularly heavy lures, etc.

Seasonal influences – When it comes to Bass fishing, seasonal behaviors can also determine the types of lure that they will take. For example, as with their Largemouth cousins, Smallmouth tend to go deeper to avoid the warmer waters on the edge so a diving jerk bait or weighted soft plastic will work better than a floating jig along the bank. And of course when they are feeding aggressively in the lead up to the spawning season, get those blades and jigs into the water as fast as you can.

Local knowledge – When I discuss live bait options for any fishing type, I always say to check with the locals to see what is found in the local system. The idea behind this is that you want to match your bait to what it is that the fish eat naturally.

The fact that you are planning to use a lure should not change this behaviour. For example, why spend you time dropping soft plastic worms when bladed jigs are what work best in that particular lake or river. If you are fishing in a new spot, always check with the locals to see what lures they use and more importantly, where they drop them.


What are the best lures for Smallmouth Bass?

Smallmouth will take a wide variety of lures including jigs, poppers, swimbaits and spoons. Always try and match the color and type to the natural bait that is found location you are fishing in and remember to take a few different options in case the first choice doesn’t land you a catch.

My five recommendations broken down

As I have mentioned above, there are plenty of types of lures when it comes to smallmouth bass fishing. If you’d like to have a sure catch, here are my 5 best recommendations to anglers…

1. Soft Fishing Lures Kit

Our first option here provides for a number of lure types including Worms, Craw Baits, Curved Tail Grubs and Jigs. All are attached to a premium mechanically-sharpened barbed hook point to ensure better penetration. Full specifications include:

  • Weight: Not stated but weightless for topwater use
  • Hook: Mechanically-sharpened barbed hook
  • Composition: Plastic
  • Replaceable hook: Hooks interchangeable

Other inclusions:

  • Mimics the look and action of real live bait
  • Cost-effective
  • Includes extra spinnerbaits and small blade baits as well

Why have I chosen it?

This is an affordable yet quality lure option suitable for a number of fishing spots. Soft plastics are perfect for beginners due to their ease of use and low chance of snagging in structure as well. These would work well for Largemouth, Trout and Salmon too.

2. TRUSCEND Fishing Metal Blade Baits

Our next option features a perfect streamlined design that reduces air resistance when cast for greater distance. It also has a vibrating action – with 3 tow points that allow the angler to adjust the vibration frequencies and the speed of the lures in the water.

  • Weight: 0.44 oz
  • Hook: Ultra Triple Sharp Hooks
  • Composition: Metal
  • Replaceable hook: Yes

Other inclusions:

  • 3D lifelike eyes
  • Durable steel rings to reduce the chances of loosing a hook.
  • 3 holes at top to allow for vibration adjustment (quick search, general and extreme modes)

Why have I chosen it?

I have chosen this option due to its streamlined casting ability and three vibration options. Each lure contains a multi level approach to fishing with visual, vibratory, and auditory cues which are perfect for Smallmouth Bass.

3. MadBite Bladed Jig Fishing Lures

Our third option features a vibrating action to assist in catching Smallmouth Bass and other varieties. Their durable needlepoint hooks are finished in black nickel plating and have two different weight options to account for varying depth requirements. Other specifications include:

  • Weight: 3/8 oz and 1/2 oz
  • Hook: Razor sharp needle point hooks
  • Composition: Metal, Silicone
  • Replaceable hook: No

Other inclusions:

  • Hand-tied, multi colour silicone skirts (secure and durable)
  • Erratic wobble blade that gives tremendous vibrating action
  • Fish shaped head

Why have I chosen it?

I’ve chosen the MadBite Bladed Jig fishing lures for their tournament-proven effectiveness in both clear and murky waters. They work especially well under heavy conditions and cover as well as in a cast and retrieve capacity for those fishing in running waters too.

4. PROBEROS Minnow Bass Fishing Lures

The PROBEROS Minnow Bass Fishing Lures are used for targeting Bass with a streamlined body, 3D lifelike eyes and a fish-attracting laser printed body that provides an excellent appearance. Each lure is specified as follows

  • Weight: 0.5 oz
  • Hook: Carbon steel treble hooks on bottom front, middle and rear
  • Composition: ABS plastic
  • Replaceable hook: Yes

Other inclusions:

  • Special tongue designed to make lures dive deep into the water once retrieved
  • Sinking Minnow movement in the water
  • Ring on front to allow for extra weight

Why have I chosen it?

I’ve chosen the Proberos minnow bass fishing lures because of their special tongue design and great floating and diving behaviours. They are well painted and colourful which makes them more realistic compared to other lures as well as great for clear and murky waters alike.

5. ZWMING Top Water Fishing Lures

And finally, this last option provides for quality topwater lure action which is proven to be very effective against Smallmouth Bass. Each lure comprises 2 high-quality carbon steel hooks and concave face to maximize life like fish swimming action. Specifications include:

  • Weight: 0.32 oz
  • Hook: High carbon steel treble hooks
  • Composition: High carbon steel, ABS Plastic
  • Replaceable hook: Yes

Other inclusions:

  • A 3D fish eye for enhanced realism
  • Rust proof hooks
  • Multiple colours and patterns
  • Internal metal ball for extra vibration

Why have I chosen it?

These poppers feature excellent quality, bright colours and super sharp rust proof hooks. Top water lures are a fantastic option for Smallmouth Bass fishing as well as Pike, Muskie and Perch alike.

02/18/2024 11:55 am GMT Lasso Brag


And there they are – my 5 best lures for Smallmouth Bass fishing this year. I hope it has been helpful and as usual, please let me know of your experiences with them.

Also, please do not hesitate to comment below if you have any questions, concerns, corrections, or would like me to check anything else out for you.

Until next time

Have fun


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Hi, I'm Paul

I am a passionate fishing, camping and four wheeled driving hobbyist who researches, tests and educates around issues and equipment relevant to them.

I am by no means a professional however my passion is to assist you in making informed decisions about buying and using awesome gear that will give you the best chance of success at whatever you are doing for the best price.

Please get in touch if you have any questions.