fishing lures and bait

TOP 9 Best Freshwater Lures Reviewed 2023 [Baits That Actually Work]

Freshwater fishing can present a lot of interesting ways to go about catching a wide range of fish species.

While this is challenging, there’s no denying that it’s also rewarding—solving problems is always fun, and coming up with a creative way to do it only heightens the pleasure aspect.

As well as with rods, fishing vests, and tackle boxes, when it comes to crucial pieces of equipment you need for freshwater fishing, among the most important are the things you’ll put into that tackle box.

After all, how do you go about attracting fish in the first place?

You guessed it: lures and bait.

But nowadays there are so many lures out there it can be difficult to even count them all, let alone decide which product to spend your money on.

With that in mind, I’ve decided to review the best freshwater lures currently available on the market.

Many of these items make innovative use of technology, and some of them are so pretty to look at that you might not even want to throw them into the water!

But that’s enough preamble: here are my top 9 freshwater lures that actually work.

TOP 9 Best Freshwater Lures 2023

Topconcpt 275pcs Freshwater Fishing Lures Kit

Review: Made out of both plastic and metal, these lures include detailed patterns and life-like colors to simulate and baitfish, while the steel ball bearing rattles offer an aggressive presentation that is sure to give you the edge over your aquatic adversaries.

Suitable for all kinds of freshwater fishing, including lakes, pools, rivers, ponds, and streams, this kit includes 275 separate lures and baits packaged in a convenient PVC box which is easy to bring with you anywhere. It’s perfect for trying to catch either trout, bass, or salmon.


  • There are two leaders included.
  • High-quality lures.


  • The hooks are too small for catching anything sizeable.
  • There are no bobbers included.


Despite the insufficiently-sized hooks, the lures and bait included in this product are an excellent selection of different styles, all of which are well-made.

In fact, the bait is some of the best freshwater fishing bait around.

Zwming Top Water Fishing Lures Bass Hard Baits 3D

Review: Featuring two different kinds of fishing baits in two different fishing tackle boxes, there are strong high carbon steel treble hooks included, as well as 3D lifelike eyes.

The bait is painted brilliant colors and patterns, while the realistic fishing poppers perform believable swimming action to attract fishes.

Constructed with durable ABS material, they’re not only usable but also environmentally friendly.

Metal balls inside make it easy to control the barycenter, while long casting is supported by the weight.


  • Hooks are rust-proof.
  • Noise and commotion attracts predator fishes like bass, pike, and perch.


  • On the expensive side, owing to the high-quality design.


These baits and lures are so beautiful you almost won’t want to use them—almost.

A top-quality product, and one of my very favorites. One of the best freshwater striped bass lures, these won’t let you down.

Fishinghappy 233pcs Trout Bass Salmon Fishing Lures

Review: Perfect for a Father’s Day Gift (or just for treating yourself!) this extensive collection of tackle includes frog lures, hard lures, crankbaits, fishing swivels, hooks, spinnerbaits, spoon lures, soft lures, poppers, and a plastic carrying box.

Among the accessories included are jig heads, weights sinkers, line stoppers, and barrel swivels, essentially turning this product into a one-stop-shop for fishing accessories.

Perfectly suited to freshwater fishing, this extensive collection includes some of the best freshwater catfish bait on the market today.


  • Competitively priced.
  • Eye-catching designs.


  • None.


I can’t find a single thing to complain about with this product. It does exactly what it says on the tin, and all the items included are really well-made.

Truscend Fishing Lures

Review: Designed with eight segmented body sections, these fishing lures imitate mother nature’s own S-shaped swimming action at both fast and slow speeds, meaning the real fish swimming in the water are powerless to ignore them.

The multi-jointed body was constructed with tough ABS plastic and is supported by ultra-strong mesh woven fabric, while each lure has two super sharp treble hooks included that can function in both fresh- and saltwater.

The body has been 3D printed and coated with pearl powder, in order to best replicate the colors and patterns of real baitfish.


  • Clever, intuitive design.
  • Stunning paintwork.
  • Swims at a depth of 6-8ft.
  • Suitable for night-fishing.


  • Have a tendency to foul hook.
  • Smaller than shown in the picture.


Quite apart from the fact that they look like a work of art, these lures cleverly imitate real baitfish, and despite some problems with foul hooking are an overall solid product.

Xblack Fishing Lures Set

Review: Including 10pcs of hard plastic feather minnow lure baits, the hooks attached to each item are high-quality carbon steel.

They look like real fish, brilliantly replicating the color and patterns, while the 3D eyes make them a powerful catching tool.

Able to function equally well in a variety of different conditions, speeds, and water columns, these are durable enough not to be broken even by heavy fish, as well as imbued with anti-corrosion qualities. The barb hook style makes these easy to fish with.


  • Suitable for beginners.
  • Variety of sizes.


  • The picture can be misleading.


Practically every review says they’re great quality, which is how you know they live up to the claims they make.

This is an excellent starter kit for anybody, as well as being suitable for more experienced fishermen, and belongs on any list of the best lures for freshwater fishing.

Rose Kuli Fishing Lures

Review: These lures, which are specifically designed for attracting bass, boast 3D, realistic-looking eyes and a large tongue to help it float at the top level of the water.

Reusable and safe for the environment, there are different colors and patterns on offer in order to ensure they’ll match your particular environment, while the built-in gravity ball feature increases the throw distance and produces plenty of sound.

The special streamlined design reduces wind resistance during throwing, allowing for the most accurate of casts.


  • Reasonably priced.
  • The lures wiggle side to side like real fish.


  • Somewhat cheaply-made.
  • The swimming action isn’t always perfect.


This product is let down by the swimming action, which is a shame, given that the action is one of its main features.

If the action were better, it would be a serious contender for the title of the best bait for freshwater fishing.

JJY 5 Pcs 2.75in Popper Fishing Lures

Review: These exquisite topwater fishing lures feature an open mouse design, 3D eyes (which make use of holographic technology to appear more real than ever), lifelike skin and striking, bright color schemes.

The swimming stroke of these streamline baits was designed to help raise the throw distance as well as mimic real fish, while each lure has two balls built into it in order to create a rumbling sound to attract potential catches.

The sharp treble hooks are durable and flexible, and won’t have any trouble puncturing a fish’s skin, making these lures among the top freshwater fishing bait around.


  • Suitable for all levels of fisherman or woman.
  • Comes with 5 lures and a tackle box included.


  • On the pricier end of the spectrum.


This product’s higher price point is completely merited by the quality of the lures, which you’ll be able to use over and over again.

Berkley PowerBait Fresh Water Fishing Bait

Review: Swimming through the water with ease without going unnoticed, this bait entices fish to hold onto your hook 18 times longer than the competition (according to the manufacturer, at any rate), giving you more time to feel more bites and increasing your chances of landing a big one.

The smaller body design makes these lures compatible for light wire hooks, while the special Berkley PowerBait scent arouse curiosity in any fish which may find themselves swimming by your lure.


  • Comes in a staggering array of colors and sizes.
  • 15 included per package.


  • They’re not the most durable of products.
  • Doesn’t float very well.


While these lures are a little too flimsy to be a really great product, they’re nonetheless well-made, and the wide range of styles and colors is a welcome plus.

Predator fish love the smell, making these lures some of the best freshwaters lures for bass in particular.

LotFancy Fishing Lures Crankbaits with Treble Hook

Review: Coming complete with a storage case and 30 pieces of tackle, these lures size from between 1.5 and 3.6 inches, and weigh between 3 and 8 grams.

The case itself is waterproof and double-sided, while the high-quality materials that have gone into the bait manufacture (like the sharp, stainless steel hooks) create a product that is durable and impactful in the water.

3D lifelike eyes combine with high-resolution body detail, while the gravity ball included inside resonates a low-frequency rattle which mimics real-life baitfish and helps to raise the throw distance of the lures themselves, helping to cement these lures as some of the best freshwater bait available in 2023.


  • Plenty of different kinds of lure included in this product.
  • The hooks can be swapped out if necessary.
  • Perfect for backwater fishing.


  • Not the best quality control: some items are flimsy and break easily.
  • Some of the baits are very small.


Even though they’re not the most well-made baits on the market, these lures are versatile enough to serve a purpose in any angler’s equipment arsenal and can be a good economical option.

Buyer’s Guide Best Freshwater Lures and Baits

man fishing in a lake

Features to Watch Out For

As with any piece of sophisticated fishing equipment, lures and baits come with a ton of features included, to the extent that it can be overwhelming trying to judge which ones are essential and which are best avoided.

Keeping that in mind, I’m going to mention a few that are definitely worth looking out for, although this is just representative of what I like in my lures, so your experience and preference may differ.

The first of these is a realistic swimming action. Many lures, including those on the list above, are segmented into a few different parts so that the lure ‘swims’ through the water, just like real fish.

Another must-have is realistic, 3D eyes. This is one of the main things fish are prone to notice, so if you can find a product that includes holographic eyes, definitely consider it.

The final feature is rare, but if you come across it’s worth picking up.

Some lures emit special scents designed to attract predator fish: this is a terrific little plus, and I highly recommend it.

man fishing in freshwater

Tackle Box Sizes

All sets of lures come with a certain number of pieces: between 10 and 50 usually, although some more extensive kits can contain upwards of 200.

It’s also possible to buy good freshwater lures in smaller packs of threes, fives, and even singles.

While it can be difficult to choose how many lures you’re going to need (because who can tell what the future holds?), in my experience, it’s best to overestimate rather than underestimate how much tackle you’re going to need.

After all, it never hurts to have a few extra pieces leftover just in case you ever need them.


Ball-bearings are often manufactured into the middle of the lure/bait, in order to serve a few different purposes.

The first is that as the lure moves through the water the ball rattles against the edges and emits a sound, similar to the sound emitted by real baitfish.

The second thing ball-bearings contribute is that they make the lure a little heavier, which in turn makes it possible to throw the cast out that much further than usual.

These are a definite plus in any lure, and while there’s not much difference between two ball-bearings and one (despite what the manufacturers may claim), it’s 100% worth making sure at least a single ball-bearing is included in whichever product you find yourself looking at.


Should you break the bank when it comes to lures and bait, or should you save the money and invest it in more expensive pieces of kit?

My opinion is that since lures are relatively inexpensive (especially when compared with the best fishing backpacks or rods), it’s worth spending a few extra bucks on a set with all the features you’ll need.

Besides, cheaply-made lures will break easier, and if that happens you may find yourself wishing you’d gone the extra mile for that slightly more expensive option.

This isn’t to say you need to go all-out for the most costly product on the market—just that this isn’t necessarily an area you want to scrimp on when it comes to the price.

fishing lures and bait


Is it Better to Use Live Bait or Lures?

This is a question that’s going to come down to personal preference, but as far as I’m concerned lures are a much better option.

That’s my answer because nowadays they’re manufactured with such advanced technology that live bait simply can’t compare in most freshwater fishing circumstances.

Sure, they’re more expensive (worms are free), but it’s often money well spent in my experience.

Which Bait Should I Use for Freshwater Fishing?

This depends entirely on the species of fish you’re hoping to catch.

The product description will tell you which fish it’s suitable for: whether that’s bass, pike, trout, salmon, perch, or pike, some lures will be better for some breeds than others.

Just make sure you thoroughly research the product before you hit that checkout button.

What Techniques Should I Use for Lure Fishing?

This is a huge question with a wide range of possible answers, but I’m going to share a YouTube video I found that excellently highlights a couple of possible techniques and strategies.

While this isn’t a comprehensive answer, it’s definitely a starting point, and could guide you in the rest of your fishing-related research.

Which Freshwater Lures Should I Use for Night-fishing?

The top two kinds of lure you should be using at night are as follows.

Bladed Swim Jigs: These vibrate a lot, which makes them a good choice for low-visibility conditions.

Buzzbaits: Similar to the swim jigs, these also emit noise and motion, but with a different mechanism.

The gist is that at night-time, even the most colorfully-designed fishing lures are likely to go unappreciated by the fish you’re trying to catch, so you need to focus on stimulating senses other than their sight.


I hope you enjoyed this thorough round-up of the best freshwater lures available on the market in 2023.

Keep in mind that the lure-making industry is vast and there are a whole range of companies who are getting in on the action, meaning that more and more products are becoming ready for purchase every single day.

I also hope the buyer’s guide was helpful to explain to you the most important points to take into consideration when you’re choosing your freshwater lures, just like I hope that if you had any questions they were pre-empted and subsequently answered in the FAQ section.

How do you go about choosing your fishing lures? What’s your favorite kind of freshwater lure to use?

Tell us all about it in the comments!