If you would like to land really huge catfish, you’ll need cut bait or live bait. Our catfish bait recipes can lead to success when you’re targeting eating-size channel cats. Commercial dough baits, of course, will work just fine, but it’s definitely more fun making homemade catfish bait.
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How to Make Catfish Bait
Catfish have a powerful sense of smell and are attracted to anything that has a strong scent. As making catfish bait usually involves mixing several unrelated products, it often smells awful to those cooking the batch.
If you’re horrified at this idea, we suggest you try the dough catfish bait recipes instead. But, if the smell won’t bother you, give these easy recipes a try:
Mystery Meat and Cheese Bait
Many anglers don’t know the secret for manufactured dough is cheese. Cheese is used as the base for many manufactured dough baits.
When selecting the block of cheese that will be the foundation of your bait, we would recommend you use a potent and sharp cheese like parmesan or cheddar.
- 1 lb cheese (cubed)
- ½ lb bloody chicken liver (chopped)
- 1 tbsp garlic (powder)
- 2 small baitfish (chopped)
- 1 can of wet dog food
- Take out a pot and spray with any cooking oil.
- Heat up the non-stick pot and put it on low heat.
- Start adding the cubed cheese to your pot and let the cheese melt. Don’t forget to stir occasionally.
- As the cheese starts to melt, chop up the livers.
- Mix the livers with your melted cheese on the pot.
- Transfer your mixture to a food processor.
- Toss in dog food, small baitfish, and garlic powder.
- Slowly add flour until the mix thickens.
- Blend until your catfish bait is fully pureed.
As soon as you’ve reached the desired consistency, you’re ready to take your homemade catfish bait out to the water.
Catfish Blood Bait
Some would argue this is the best homemade catfish bait. But, it’s not for you if you’re faint of heart and you can’t stand the look and smell of blood.
Many anglers would want to steer clear of using blood as bait as it’s often going to take some time and practice to perfect. This is what this catfish bait recipe entails:
- Cow, turkey, or chicken blood
- 2 tbsp garlic salt
- For garnish, kosher salt
- Get any flat container e.g. a 13×9” pan, preferably a disposable one.
- Pour blood onto the flat container.
- Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
- Pour more blood to make another layer.
- Pour sugar to form another layer.
- Repeat this process three times.
- Set the pan anywhere that gets direct sun exposure for two days for the blood to coagulate.
- As soon as the blood is done bubbling, move it into the freezer.
- Thaw it out.
- Cut the coagulated animal blood into slabs resembling a liver.
- Place the liver-like slabs somewhere where there’s sun exposure for the second time (to bake).
- Sprinkle kosher salt to thicken it.
When you think the blood is ready to your liking in terms of toughness, refreeze the bait. You can take it fishing with you the next day.
Sardine Delight Dough Bait
Instead of you packing sardines into a can, we suggest you switch it up by loading them into a dough bait.
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 can sardines
- 1 oz anise extract
- Whisk the cornmeal and flour in a mixing bowl.
- Chop your sardines then throw the pieces into the flour and cornmeal mixture. Include the liquid that comes with the canned sardines.
- Mix everything together so the flour and cornmeal soak all the juices.
- Add in the anise extract
- Mix everything well until combined thoroughly.
- Add the water slowly or in small amounts while mixing. Remember to add only enough water that will help achieve the consistency of a dough. If you notice your mixture has gotten too runny, slowly add cornmeal or flour in order to thicken it.
- Start forming dough balls the size of golf balls.
- Boil enough water that will completely cover your dough balls.
- Add all the dough balls to the boiling water and boil for three to five minutes for them to fully harden.
- Get the dough balls out of the water then drain them with a paper towel.
- Let the balls cool.
You can store your dough balls in a Ziploc. They’re ready for to fish for some catfish whenever you are!
Garlic Chicken Supreme Bait
This is our personal favorite from our homemade catfish bait recipes. We like it as this recipe doesn’t take a lot of time to make plus it doesn’t stink.
This bait is also packed with lots of flavor from chicken giblets being marinated in chicken blood and garlic.
- 1 lb chicken giblets
- 1 tub chicken liver with blood
- 4 garlic cloves (minced)
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- Mix all your ingredients in a plastic gallon Ziploc.
- Make sure you release all the air from the bag before you seal it.
- Place it in the fridge for 24 hours.
- Take the bag from the fridge and let it bake in the sun for hours.
Now your chicken giblets can be hooked for catching catfish! Easy, right?
Which do you think is your favorite from our catfish bait recipes? Making homemade catfish bait isn’t for every angler and we definitely understand.
It’s often a ton of work. If it’s not your thing, stick with using manufactured baits. If you dare try these effective recipes, just know that they’re worth the labor! Everyone knows hardwork creates success and making these baits is no exception.
Let us know what recipes have worked for you and what you want to try using next by leaving us a comment below!