12 Best Soft Plastics for Bass: Load Em’ Up

Last Updated on August 23, 2022

If I had to pick a favorite lure type, it would definitely be soft plastics. They’re so versatile and flat out fun to fish. 

The Yamamoto Senko has always been my favorite and probably will be forever. I’ve caught more fish using this lure than anything else on the market. 

If you’re struggling to figure out the best soft plastic for bass in your eyes, I’m here to help. I’ve used nearly all of these lures and they’re all great. 

After reading through my favorite picks, I believe you’ll have an easier time figuring out which ones you should add to your collection.

Gary Yamamoto Senko
Best Overall
Gary Yamamoto Senko

It comes in about 50 different colors and sizes range from 3-inches to 7-inches. I recommend splitting the difference and going with a bag of 5-inch Senko worms. 

Berkeley Power Swimmer
Best Swimbait
Berkeley Power Swimmer

It comes in a number of different colors, shapes, and sizes based on where you’re fishing and what kind of bass you’re after. 

The Power Swimmer has a ribbed body which creates a swimming vibration as you retrieve it. This is the main enticing factor behind these bass lures.

Strike King KVD Rodent
Best Creature
Strike King KVD Rodent

Anyway, this lure comes with a pack of six and you have a few options on how you can fish them. I’ve used it as a trailer and pulled it through heavy cover. You can Texas rig it too. 


Best Bass Soft Plastics: My Top 12 

Choosing the lures for this list was not easy. Bass fishing plastics are deep.

There’s a ton of options and many of them are so similar because a lot of manufacturers copy the features of a popular lure and sell it as their own. 

That said, I tried to not only provide you with the best bass plastics, but I also want to make sure I’m recommending the option that comes from the best manufacturer. 

You’ll notice a lot of the same 3-4 manufacturers in this guide because I’m a big believer in company reputation and I swear by a handful of companies. Let’s dive into it. 

1. Gary Yamamoto Senko 

Gary Yamamoto Senko soft plastic lures

The Yamamoto Senko is a tried and true lure that will probably exist long after I’m gone, my kids are gone, and my grandkids are gone. 

It’s one of the best bass plastics to ever hit the market and there’s a few reasons for this. 

First, the versatility of the lure. You can use several different applications fishing it weightless, wacky, shaky, flipping, Texas, Carolina, or a number of other methods as well.

It comes in about 50 different colors and sizes range from 3-inches to 7-inches. I recommend splitting the difference and going with a bag of 5-inch Senko worms. 

The only thing the Senko lacks in contrast to other options is the scent factor. The Zoom Trick Worm which I’ll review later has salt impregnation which convinces the bass to strike harder and bite longer. 

Nonetheless, this still works like a charm. 

I like to Texas rig it with no weight and pull it through the shallow water along the shore near weedbeds. I’ve caught more bass using this lure than any of the others on here combined.

If you want to fish soft plastics for bass, this is where you start. 

2. Berkley Powerbait Power Swimmer

Berkley Powerbait Power Swimmer

The Power Swimmer is another battle tested lure that’s been around for a long time and has seen quite a few changes over the years. 

It comes in a number of different colors, shapes, and sizes based on where you’re fishing and what kind of bass you’re after. 

The Power Swimmer has a ribbed body which creates a swimming vibration as you retrieve it. This is the main enticing factor behind these bass lures. 

Like the rest of the Powerbait, you also get the scent attractant added into the lure. It smells and tastes like real fish. This has two benefits. 

Benefit one is that the smell will attract fish and make them feel a little less skeptical. Benefit two is when a bass actually strikes it, they won’t back off – they’ll bite down harder when they taste it. 

Toss a small jig head on the end and work this gradually near structure. You can also rig it Texas style for a weedless presentation. 

3. Strike King KVD Rodent 

Strike King KVD Rodent

If you’re looking for something you can use as a trailer or by itself, Strike King has a lot of options. This rodent creature bait is one of a kind. 

It’s salt impregnated and is scented with coffee bean granules and coffee bean oil. Coffee you say? 

The jury is open on why fish like the smell of coffee and a lot of anglers speculate on this. I believe it has something to do with the fact that worms are attracted to coffee and bass are attracted to worms. 

Anyway, this lure comes with a pack of six and you have a few options on how you can fish them. I’ve used it as a trailer and pulled it through heavy cover. You can Texas rig it too. 

I’d fish this heavy in the Spring using a craw color to post-spawn bass. This is another one you should always have in your tacklebox. The KVD Craw is also a popular option. 

4. Zoom Magnum Worm

Zoom Magnum Worm for bass fishing

One of the only worms that really competes with the Senko is the Zoom worm. It comes in about 10 colors, it’s ribbed, and it’s a lot longer and narrower than the Senko. 

This is the best plastic bait for bass if you like fishing slow, neko or ned rigs. It’s tough to Texas rig this one because of how narrow it is but it’s a great choice for drop shotting as well. 

These are salt impregnated to attract the bass and they’re pretty simple overall. If you’re looking for a basic soft plastic worm that’s a little longer than the typical Senko, this is the one you want. 

5. Zoom Super Fluke

Zoom Super Fluke soft plastic lure

The Super Fluke is easily one of my favorite swimbaits. It comes in a ton of different colors so you can appeal to the exact situation you’re dealing with. I recommend picking up a few of them so you can have options. 

They’re lightly scented so I’d recommend even stepping it up higher with a garlic or salt powerbait. 

I fish it weightless because it allows the lure to create its own presentation which is essentially how it was designed. You don’t need to rig it with weights or anything like that. 

Cast it out and start retrieving. As you’re retrieving it, it’ll roll just beneath the surface in a zigzag pattern. 

If you’re absolutely determined to put some weight on it, I’d suggest driving a nail through the top or using a flat jig head with an exposed hook. 

6. Strike King Rage Craw

Strike King Rage Craw

The Rage Tail Craw is one of the best soft plastic baits to use as a trailer with a skirted jig.

It comes in a lot of different colors, looks super realistic, and it’s designed to create turbulence in the water which is there to attract bass. 

I’d suggest rigging them with a chatterbait to create some extreme action. It’s a great option for Summer bass fishing when they’re really active in the early morning and late evening. 

7. Ned Rig Stickbaits

Ned Rig Stickbaits

This might be a lesser known option that many of you haven’t heard of before. If you don’t know what a Ned rig is, it’s basically a flathead jig that sits directly on a soft plastic bait. 

In the case of these lures specifically, they’re designed for this application. They’re small, finesse lures that come as a kit. 

Because of the weighted head design, they sink down pretty fast which can cause issues with vegetation. Your best bet is to fish these in clear water as much as possible. 

The main selling point here is that you don’t need to purchase anything else because everything you need comes with it. If you’re a beginner and you’re looking to test out the ned rig, this is a great way to do so. 

8. Zoom Bait Brush Hog

Zoom Bait Brush Hog

The brush hog is one of the best largemouth bass soft plastics because it has a thicker body and erratic action which is quite aggressive in the water. 

If you asked me what it is, I wouldn’t be able to tell you. It’s a cross between a lizard, crawfish, and tube bait but I haven’t a clue what it’s actually supposed to be. 

Either way, it cleans up in the water and provides a lifelike appearance in a number of colors. 

Texas and Carolina rigs are the main ways of using this and I like fishing it along shoreline cover such as overhanging trees or stumps. 

Due to its size, it can handle a pretty big hook so you may want to size up a little to a 4/0 or something equivalent. 

As with most of the soft plastics you’ll find in this guide, these are salt impregnated which makes the bass want to hold on long enough for you to set the hook.

If you’re looking for something a little different, the brush hog is a great choice. 

9. Yamamoto Cowboy Creature Bait

Yamamoto Cowboy Creature Bait

The Cowboy Creature Bait from Gary Yamamoto is like a hybrid between a split tail jig and a craw. The legs are pretty fragile but they create a nice presentation in the water. 

One thing that stands true to the brand are the colors though. The Yamamoto brand tends to have the same unique color options across all of their soft plastic baits and I’m all here for it. 

The deep blue and green pumpkin colors are two of the best out there. 

As for presentation, you’ve got your choices. You can throw a jig head on it and pitch it, you can flip it, or you can go weightless. 

10. Yamamoto Zako Swimbait

Yamamoto Zako Swimbait

Alright, so we’ve seen a couple of these already and in reality, it’s just another typical swimbait. What makes this one different from the rest and what makes it better than a jerkbait? 

The jointed portions of the back half of this swimbait are what make it so great. It offers such a realistic and aggressive action in the water.

Plus, you can pair it with a chatterbait if you really want to get the noise going. 

It’s designed to imitate a shad, baitfish, or minnow to help you catch bass looking for prey. 

I would highly recommend using this as a trailer because of how small and fragile it is. It’ll get ripped to shreds pretty easily and having a swim jig head will only make things harder for you.

Go with something skirted as long as the two actions don’t compete against each other. 

11. Mister Twister Curly Tail Grub 

Mister Twister Curly Tail Grub

One lure I grew up on was the old school Mister Twister so I had to bring it back for you. What can I say? It’s a small curly tail grub that has been working for decades in the largemouth and smallmouth game. 

The reason it’s one of the best bass soft baits is because they’re a great choice for small bass, crappie, walleye, and freshwater panfish. 

It’s a great beginner lure if you’re trying to introduce children to artificial lures and it’s also a great choice if you’re not trying to chase anything too big. 

If the bass aren’t biting, it could be because your lure is too big and aggressive. A lot of the presentations outlined in this guide are for when the fish are biting.

If they’re not biting, a smaller lure like this might do the trick. 

12. Zoom Bait Salty Tube

Zoom Bait Salty Tube

Flipping tubes is a strategy that’s as old as the hills and a lot of old school pro anglers still swear by it.

The tentacles of the tube are what creates the presentation and a lot of them, including this one, come with a scent attractant. 

I think fishing tubes around docks and wood are the best methods. The tube is designed to look like prey so you want to fish it nice and slow or dead stick it. 

Texas rigging is the way to go with a nice weight on the head for long distance and precise casting.

Sometimes the old school methods are the best and we get too caught up in all the latest and greatest gear.

We end up forgetting what has worked for years and years. 

How to Fish Soft Plastics for Bass 

Having all of these lures at your disposal is great, but it won’t do much if you don’t know how to fish them. 

I discussed a little in each section about various methods, rigging, presentation, and so on – but I want to offer you some important tips to help you maximize the best soft plastic for bass. 

Know Your Rigs 

You need to know your bass rigs if you want to use a soft plastic. This is one thing that separates these lures from a lot of other options. 

When you get spinnerbait, you don’t necessarily need to do anything. Just tie your knots and toss it out there. Crankbaits are the same deal; just tie it up and start casting. 

You can’t just take a worm or a plastic craw and cast it because there’s no hook and there’s no weight to the lure so it won’t go very far or present properly. 

Because of this, you need to rig it. I won’t go too far into breaking down the individual rigs but Texas, Carolina, Wacky, and Shaky Head are some of the more common ones you’ll use when fishing soft plastics. 

Have the Right Lure for the Situation 

soft plastic lures for bass fishing

Think about it this way. If you’re fishing a 90-degree morning with the sun shining, would you use the same lure you used when it was 65 and overcast?

If you said yes, you might want to rethink your plans here. 

With there being so many options for soft plastics, there’s a time and a place for every lure and every color. If you choose to buy any of the lures in this guide, I recommend getting at least three different colors. 

The color will play a major role based on the weather and time of year. 

For example, if it’s drizzling in Spring with an overcast sky, it means that the water is likely pretty murky and you’ll want to use a bladed jig head and a brightly colored soft plastic to create a reflective and colorful presentation. 

If it’s clear skies and sunny, you may want to choose something white or natural looking and go for a more traditional Texas rigged jig head and pull through the weed beds because the big bass are feeding in the shallows. 

The important thing to remember is that there’s a time and a place for every lure and we don’t just use something because “we like it” or we “think it’s the right choice.” 

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you need a sinker with soft plastics? 

You don’t need a sinker for soft plastics but you can use one. A weightless presentation is fine especially if you’re Texas rigging a worm or imitating a topwater.

What are the best plastic worms for bass? 

The best plastic worm for bass is the Yamamoto Senko. The Zoom Trick Worms are also great options. 

What color soft plastic lure works best for bass? 

The best color soft plastic for bass depends on situations such as water clarity and vegetation density.

I recommend having a few options available to you so you can choose based on the conditions. 

Final Thoughts

I hope you enjoyed this list of the best soft plastics for bass. This is a subject near and dear to me because most of these are some of my favorite fishing lures in general and I have a lot of experience with them. 

I highly recommend picking up a handful of these because they’re affordable and having options is always the way to go when fishing plastic lures. 

Do you have a favorite soft plastic for bass? Let us know in the comments!

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