18 Best Rat & Mouse Bait Lures

Here are some of the best rat and mouse baits to help attract and lure rodents to the trap.

Most of these items can easily be found at home and hence no additional cost is needed to make the rodent trap works more effectively.

Sidenote – The bait lures featured in this article is meant to simply attract rats and mouse instead of killing them like bait poison does.

>> Read this article for the best rat & mouse bait poisons.

Most of us grew up watching cartoons where a large and tasty looking slice of cheese is being used as bait lure on mice traps. While rodents eat nearly everything, there are certain things that are very effective to use as mouse trap bait.

Natural Rat & Mouse Baits

Mice are natural seed and grain eaters, but inside homes they are very attracted to foods that are high in fat, protein and sugar. Peanut butter is perhaps one of the best bait lure to use. A pinch or two of marshmallows, tiny bits of beef jerky or cooked bacons also works effectively in attracting the mice.

Peanut Butter


Beef Jerky


Maple Syrup

Nuts or Bird seeds

Jelly Beans

Pet Food

Cracker (mixed with butter or nut butter)

Hot Dog (Slices)

Cooked Bacon (Tiny bits)

Honey or Molasses (a drop or two)

Nesting Materials As Rat & Mouse Baits

Nesting materials like dental floss, yarn and twine are also good attractant where female mice gather to build nest in the fall. Simply tie the material to the trigger to arm the trap which springs when the mice pull on it.

>> Also read: Best Rodent Poisons

Shredded Paper





Dental Floss

Note: Pet food is actually a good attractant, hence make sure that pet food is properly stored to avoid attracting rodents. Also be sure to clear out the pet food tray after use.

Tip: Combining nuts and peanut butter is a great way to lure rodents. The nut also stick to the trap nicely with the peanut butter.

[May: We prefer non sweet base type of bait so as not to attract other pests like cockroaches or ants.]

Tips & Tricks

  • Food-based bait should be changed or refreshed regularly as old bait can go bad or not smell as strong.
  • Switch and experiment with different baits to see what works.
  • Only use the least amount needed (as little as possible) to attract the rodent. Too much bait can result in the rodent being able to grab a piece of the bait without triggering the trap.
  • Wear gloves when handling and baiting the trap as the rats and mouse are less likely to enter or fall for the trap if it carries any trace of human scent (also keep pets like dogs and cats away for the same reason).
  • Most live mouse traps are small and have sensitive triggers, hence it’s important to use lightweight or very small amount of bait.

Pro-Tip – Place little crumbs of bait at the opening of the trap to entice the target to enter. Use very small sample of the bait lure and avoid creating an entire trail of bait, which can fill up the mouse before they even enter.

>> Related: Best Rat & Mouse Killer Products


Generally, food-based bait works more effectively than nesting materials because of the smell given off. Food based baits are also good for use with rodenticides to increase the chances of rodents taking it.

If for some reasons you are not able to check on the trap for a while, nesting materials are ideal as you can set it and not come back to it for some time.

Give them a shot and see what works. Don’t be afraid to try out as almost all the baits featured can be found at home.

>> Also read: How to Get Rid of Dead Rat Smell At Home

Will you be trying some of these? Or have you tried any of these bait lures? Let us know in the comment what have you tried and what worked well for you!