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10 Best Smallmouth Bass Lures of 2022

Updated: Feb 15, 2022

Smallmouth Bass Lures

best smallmouth bass fishing lures

Smallmouth bass and largemouth bass both feed on baitfish and crustaceans, but since they live in different habitats, it's essential to know how to correctly fish for each species. We discuss the best smallmouth bass lures and when to fish each bait.

A smallmouth bass' habitat consists of areas with many rocks and sand, while largemouth bass prefers areas with aquatic plants and weeds. Because of this, there are different ways to target each fish correctly.

This article will discuss how to catch smallmouth bass and what lures you should be using to catch the most fish.

Where to Fish for Smallies

Smallmouth bass are found in many water bodies; however, you will find the most smallies in clear water. Looking for clear water should be one of your main criteria, and you should try to avoid murky or muddy water as much as possible.

Smallmouth bass fishing is also best in rocky areas and places with a sandy bottom. You can also look for submerged logs and cover that smallmouth bass will likely be clustering around.

Lure Weight

Since smallmouth bass prefer these types of areas, we recommend using lightweight lures that don't have a weedless design. You won't have to worry about getting snagged if you're fishing a sandy bottom, and you'll want to be using low profile and smaller lures.

It is best to use a thinner line when targeting smallmouth bass since you'll likely be fishing in clear water. It's a lot easier for the bass to see your line when you're not fishing in murky waters.

Table of Contents

  • Soft Plastics (Strike King Coffee Tube Bait)

  • Topwater Frogs (Booyah Pad Crasher)

  • Jigs (Croch Silicon Jig Skirt)

  • Jerkbaits (wLure Minnow Crankbait)

  • Blade Baits (Heddon Sonar Flash)

  • Diving Crankbaits (Strike King Square Bill Crankbait)

  • Spinner Baits (Mepps Double Blade Aglia)

  • Rubber Worm (Berkeley Gulp Soft Plastic Leach)

  • Plastic Lizards (Zoom Lizard)

  • Crankbait (Bomber Crankbait Model A)


Strike King Coffee- Best Smallmouth Tube Bait

Strike King Coffee Tube Bait brown smallmouth scented fishing bait

4.7 Stars | 170+ Amazon Reviews

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Soft plastic baits are a favorite of many smallmouth bass anglers. These lures have a finesse or low profile presentation, and they are great at mimicking crayfish. The best type of soft plastic to use is called a tube bait. These baits are the same size as a crawdad, and they have great action that attracts smallmouth bass.

Lure Details

Our favorite tube bait is the Strike King Coffee Tube. This lure can be purchased directly off Amazon and has a strong scent that bass love. The appeal is enhanced with coffee bean oil and gives off a powerful odor. You probably think what we thought before we first tried it, "why in the world would a bass like the smell of coffee?"

For whatever reason, smallmouth bass can't get enough of these, and they're the best tube bait out there to put fish in the boat. If you don't believe me, you can check out their Amazon reviews, where they have an average rating of 4.7 Stars.


Booyah Pad Crasher - Best Smallmouth Topwater Frog

Booyah Pad Crasher Topwater Frog white and black spots with long string trailers

4.6 Stars | 1200+ Amazon Reviews

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Topwater lures can be an excellent choice for smallmouth bass. Smallies can be extremely aggressive fish, mainly near sunrise and sunset. When choosing a topwater lure for smallmouth, you want to find something that looks as realistic as possible.

Since smallmouth live in clear water, they can be pickier about the artificial bait you use. Try to use something that has lifelike action and good detail. Topwater frog lures are wildly popular among smallmouth anglers.

Lure Details

Our favorite frog for smallmouth is the Booyah Pad Crasher. This topwater lure has exceptional detailing, and it also has a cupped mouth, so it will double as a good pooper or chugger if you're fishing in open water. This frog weighs 1.1oz, so it works well with a clear and thin fluorocarbon line.

Since this bait is on the heavier side, it makes longer casts possible, which allows you to cover more water. We recommend avoiding fishing this lure in choppy water. If there's a high wind or current, save the frog for later and stick to your typical sinking lures. Otherwise, this bait destroys smallmouth on calm days.


Croch Silicon Jig Skirt - Best Jig Trailer

Croch Silicon Jig Skirts blue and white varieties for smallmouth

4.6 Stars | 300+ Amazon Reviews

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Jigs are one of the most well-rounded smallmouth bass fish lures. Anglers love to use jigs because they're successful year-round, and they're a dependable lure for catching fish. There are two types of jig skirt designs, plastic skirts and hair skirts.

While they're both common, we prefer rubber skirts. Rubber skirts hold their volume better in the water, and we find that bass hold onto them longer, giving you more time for your hook set.

Lure Details

When it comes to rubber jig skirts, we strongly recommend that you buy a set of inexpensive skirts and attach them to jig heads yourself. Croch Silicon Jig Skirts are the best option for this method. With this bundle, you get a fantastic price for 24 individual skirts, and each skirt has 50 rubber strands built into it.

Not only is this a more cost-effective option, but it means you have more options for customizing your baits. You can do anything from merely sliding a jig skirt on a jig head to creating a setup with swimbaits and flashers. The DIY fishing style will also help you build your lure awareness, and in the end, will only make you a better angler.


W-Lure Minnow - Best Smallmouth Bass Crankbait

wLure Minnow Crankbait assorted baitfish imitation patterns for fishing

4.3 Stars | 700+ Amazon Reviews

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It's essential to consider the water temperature when you're fishing for smallmouth bass. When the water is colder during the winter, a fantastic lure option is a jerkbait. You want to fish slower when the water's cold, and high-quality jerkbaits keep their action even when fished slower.

Lure Details

As with the other lures on this list, your goal for picking the best smallmouth lure is to find something that looks realistic. wLure Minnow Crankbaits are a great choice as they have distinctive patterning, and they come in a variety of colors.