3 Best Lure Colors for Crappies | Jigs and Plastics

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Crappie jigs and plastics are available in nearly endless color options, but that doesn’t mean you have to stock up on all of them. Professional crappie angler Todd Huckabee thinks other lure factors are more important than color.  As such, he’s simplified his approach to lure colors for crappies and shares his top 3 color pairings for muddy water, clear water, and even cloudy days.

The days of guessing what color works best are over for savvy crappie anglers equipped with forward-facing sonar. Huckabee notes that he observes how the crappies respond to his bait. If he doesn’t get a favorable reaction on forward-facing sonar, a color change is in order. Here’s how Huckabee chooses and refines his lure color based on the weather conditions and the fish’s mood.

Huckabee’s top 3 lure colors for crappies (jig and plastics):
  1. Huckabee usually starts with a black and chartreuse plastic with an orange head. He fishes a lot of muddy water, so naturally, a darker color gets the nod.
  2. He then switches to a gold flake-colored plastic with a gold head if the crappies don’t react positively to the black and chartreuse pairing. This more muted offering works well when the crappies are tentative. It’s also a natural color, so it works well in clear water.
  3. The third core color combination is a chartreuse plastic body paired with a bright head. Chartreuse gets it done often, so it’s a staple for Huckabee.

Huckabee has so much confidence in these 3 color pairings that if the crappies don’t react, he switches to a different bait style, such as a finesse hair jig.

And generally speaking, a darker color is the best lure color for muddy water crappies. On the flip side, clear or natural lure colors are usually the best option if the water is clear. But don’t limit yourself. The above recommendations are experienced-based guidelines, but Huckabee also factors in the light-reducing effects of cloudy days, especially when there’s some wind, to reduce visibility on clear lakes further. Try using wild and bright colors on clear lakes in these conditions to trigger reaction strikes.

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