How to steam lobster tails


How to Steam Lobster Tails at Home

Steaming lobster tails is another a great option when deciding the best cooking option for you and your family. This cooking method is faster than boiling and is arguably the most traditional way. Since you are actually cooking at a higher temperature, it's even more critical not to overcook your tails.

PRO TIP - Keep your tails from curling in the lobster pot so the tails will lie flat on a plate when they are done; use a metal or wooden skewer so the lobster tail stays straight while cooking!

Ingredients You'll Need:

2-6 Maine Lobster Tails

1 Tablespoon of Butter Per Tail

2 oz Of Maine Sea Salt

Recipe Notes

Prep Time: 3 Minutes

Cook Time: 4-13 Minutes
Serves: 2-6 People

How to Steam Lobster Tails - A Step-By-Step Guide

A women getting ready to cook lobster tails  

1. Choose a pot large enough to hold your lobster tails with a tight-fitting lid that is large enough to fit the lobster tails with enough room for the steam to circulate around them.

Maine Lobster Now cooking  

2. Place a steamer basket or an upturned colander in the pot so lobster tails are not submerged in the water.

Measuring ingredients in a bowl  

3. Pour in cold water to a depth of about 2 inches.

Pot with a lid on top  

4. Cover your pot and bring water to a boil.

Hand in a pot that's on the stove  

5. Once the water is boiling, quickly add the lobster tails to the pot and cover.

Tail size and cook time chart  

6. Steam the lobster tails using the lobster tails steaming times below.

Lobster tail in ice to stop the cooking  

7. Once you have reached your approximate cooking time, remove the pot from heat and check one of the tails. The tails should be completely cooked in the center of the meat.

Cooked lobster being taken out of a pot  

8. Remove your lobster tails from the cooking pot using tongs or gloves so that your tails to not overcook.

Lobster Tails Steaming Instructions  

9. Serve with drawn butter and enjoy!

How Long To Steam Lobster Tails

3 to 6 oz.
6 to 7 oz.
8 to 10 oz.
10 to 16 oz.
16 to 20 oz.
20 to 28 oz.
4-6 minutes
6-8 minutes
8-10 minutes
9-11 minutes
10-12 minutes
10-13 minutes

Best Way to Serve Steamed Lobster Tails

There are many, many ways to dress steamed lobster tails to your liking! Serving lobster tails with melted butter is probably the most recognized and traditional way to do it, but there are some good ways to mix things up a bit, too.

One way you can do this is by jazzing the clarified butter up a bit with a few more ingredients. A popular way to add a quick spin on melted butter is by adding fresh, minced garlic to make garlic butter. If you're shying away from garlic, you can make lemon butter instead by adding a squeeze of fresh lemon and a pinch of chopped parsley.

You can substitute a variety of spices for butter, too, if you're looking for a healthier way to serve steamed lobster tail. Salt and pepper is an undeniable duo for good reason and makes an excellent topper on your lobster. Using fresh sea salt is a great way to bring out the tender, natural flavor of the lobster. And if you want to spice the black pepper up (more than it already is), try toasting whole peppercorns and pulverizing them for smokier touch.

If you're looking to add even more spice, Old Bay and other blackened/cajun seasonings will offer a nice punch. Just be careful of the additional salt these seasonings contain.

Regardless of how you top your lobster, the most timeless way to present them is with a garnish of parsley and lemon wedges.

Steamed Lobster Tail Pairing Options

The beauty of lobster as the centerpiece of an entree is the plethora of sides that can accompany it. For the sake of brevity, we'll stick to only three we would definitely pair with our steamed lobster tail recipe.

Let's start with another shellfish: steamed clams. Because of their size, they make a perfect appetizer or a side, and benefit greatly from a dunk in melted butter.

Why not a soup to pair as well? Consider this: the only way you can truly add to lobster — is with more lobster! A well-prepared lobster bisque will make the perfect seafood acquaintance for our steamed lobster recipe.

To round the dish off, you may want to add some greens to contrast the red. Touch up your steaming skills by making some fresh broccoli crowns with a dash of salt and pepper, or if you're feeling citrusy, some lemon pepper.

Getting Fancy With the Steaming Process

Using salt water isn't the only liquid you can use to steam lobster. As a matter of fact, using beer — usually a light beer — is becoming a more popular way to add flavor in the steaming process. Simply boil a 12-ounce can of beer below your lobster tails.

We still recommend using salt water as a way to replicate ocean water, but if you want to try something different, give it a shot! You may be pleasantly surprised by the result.

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Alternative Cooking Methods: Boiling | Baking | Grilling