How to Cook Lobster Tails at Home


For the novice cook, frozen lobster tails are an easy way to add luxury to a meal. Much of the meat in a lobster is in the tail, so you’re saved the need to deal with a whole lobster. Frozen tails, if thawed properly and not overcooked, come close to the flavor of fresh lobster. Don’t scrimp on the quality--more costly cold water lobster tails will provide a tastier finished product. Serve with melted butter for dipping or a wine sauce.

How to Cook Lobster Tails at Home
(Santy Gibson/Demand Media)

Things You'll Need

  • Lobster tails
  • White wine
  • Pot with steamer basket
  • Salted butter
  • Finely chopped chives, green onion or parsley
Step 1

Defrost the lobster tails by leaving them in their packaging in the refrigerator overnight. If you need them more quickly, take them out of the package and place them in a colander in a bowl of lukewarm (not hot) water. Change the water from time to time until the lobster is completely thawed.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media
Step 2

Pour 1½ cups of white wine into a pot that can accommodate a steamer basket. Bring the wine to a gentle boil.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media
Step 3

Place the tails in the steamer basket and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media
Step 4

Steam the lobster for about seven minutes. Check after six minutes. If the flesh is firm and opaque, remove the tails from the heat.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media
Step 5

Place the lobster tails on a warmed platter and cover with a clean kitchen cloth to keep them warm while you make the wine sauce.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media
Step 6

Add 2 tbs. of salted butter to the wine in the pot. Toss in a tablespoon of finely chopped chives, parsley or the green part of a spring onion. Cook and stir for two to three minutes. Drizzle the sauce over the lobster and serve immediately.

Santy Gibson/Demand Media

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Tips & Warnings

  • Run a skewer the length of the lobster tail before you steam it. This will prevent it from curling and will make a nicer presentation. It won’t affect the flavor.
  • Chill the lobster by plunging it into cold water directly from the steamer basket to use in cold dishes like salads.


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