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Boiled Lobster Tails

February 15, 2013

By Kath Dedon


I had never cooked lobster tails before last night. Maybe it’s because they are not a local seafood. We live in “crab land”. Dungeness crabs are bountiful in the Pacific Northwest, so they are the shellfish we most often enjoy. But this week I noticed that one of our upscale markets was featuring lobster tails for Valentine’s Day so I decided to make Boiled Lobster Tails as part of my “Surf and Turf” dinner for Bob.

Surfing the Internet, I found all kinds of ways to prepare them, including grilling, roasting, steaming, baking, and boiling. I found an excellent video about how to butterfly them. I found a site that gave several methods of cooking and it also recommended putting a skewer through the tails to keep them straight, regardless of your cooking method. In the end, I chose this simple method from Better Homes and Gardens for boiling the lobster tails. I figured it would give me the pure lobster flavor I wanted with no danger of drying out the meat.

I loved this simple preparation! The Boiled Lobster Tails, served with a grilled steak, green beans, and a salad made our Valentine’s Day dinner feel quite special. But there’s no reason you can’t make Surf and Turf any day of the year for your honey!

Boiled lobster tail


Boiled Lobster Tails

(Adapted from a Better Homes and Gardens recipe)


(print the recipe)


Serves 2


2 lobster tails (5 – 8 ounces each)

1½ teaspoons salt

Melted butter (optional, for serving)


2 for $12.98. Not bad!

Lobster Tails on sale


1. Bring 6 cups of water to boil in a 3-quart pot.

2. Run a wooden skewer through each lobster tail lengthwise to keep them straight.

Skewered lobster tails


3. When the water is boiling, add 1½ teaspoons salt to the pot. Add the lobster tails and turn the heat down a bit so they are simmering. Simmer for 5 – 8 minutes (or 1 minute for each ounce of your lobster tails).

4. Drain for a minute or so in a colander. Then use scissors to cut the shells; spread them open with your fingers.

5. Serve with melted butter, if desired.

Lobster tail and steak

41 Comments leave one →
  1. February 15, 2013 9:36 am

    Those look SO good!

    • February 15, 2013 9:38 am

      Thanks, Laura! They were tasty and so easy! Met Market may still have them on sale.

      • Angie permalink
        December 24, 2013 3:42 pm

        Awesome, didn’t know about the wooden skewer! I have 10 lobster tails that i will cook next weekend. Getting my sticks out!!

  2. February 15, 2013 10:13 am

    What a lovely treat! I’ll wager this was a delicious meal. I would have loved to join you for dinner :-). Have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  3. February 15, 2013 5:50 pm

    Omg, you are making me wish I had lobster instead of the chicken I have in the oven for dinner, lol. That is a good price too, most of the times the are at least $10 each here. I love how you served them with a side of butter, the only way to go. I’m thinking next week I might have to go for it and get some lobster. I boiled them once and they came out great, I did them in the oven once and they were dry, but it could have been I left them in there too long. Have a great weekend.

    • February 16, 2013 9:07 am

      Thanks for your comment, Gina! I wondered about the recipes for broiled, baked or roasted lobster tails. It seems like it would be easy to overcook them. Hope you have a great weekend, too.

  4. February 17, 2013 1:05 pm

    Oh lobster! This reminds me of our summers in Maine (which is a very good memory to evoke!) Thank you for sharing another delectable creation. I hope you are having a restful Sunday afternoon, and I hope you have an even better week. Hugs and love!

  5. Bea permalink
    June 27, 2013 5:32 pm

    wow I live in New Brunswick and buy the tails for 2.99 each!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  6. Sue, Toronto permalink
    July 20, 2013 3:42 pm

    Thanks Kath – Just purchased lobster tails without a clue how to cook them and wanted a no-fuss-easy-to-do recipe. Am just about to plop them in the boiling water!

    • July 20, 2013 5:04 pm

      Hope it works as well for you, Sue, as it did for me. It was easy indeed!

  7. Candace Weixel permalink
    December 22, 2013 1:10 pm

    Do you thaw the lobster first prior to putting in water?

    • December 22, 2013 2:51 pm

      Hi Candace,
      Mine were not frozen when I bought them, so I’d say that you should defrost them first to use this method.

      • Candace Weixel permalink
        December 22, 2013 3:43 pm

        Thank-you for your reply, I will thaw the Lobster first.Happy Holidays… Candace

  8. Andi permalink
    December 24, 2013 6:26 pm

    Can someone please
    tell me if you cut the hard shell or the under side of the lobster tail.

  9. Jean permalink
    February 11, 2014 2:41 pm

    I used your directions for cooking the lobster, then grilled a filet mignon, sliced it thin and added the tail, sliced and buttered, to fettucine with Alfredo sauce and just to be a tiny bit more outrageous, served allthat with some warm croissants. Totally decadent, especially since it is snowing outside and this became a new comfort food!

  10. Michelle Kopacz permalink
    February 14, 2014 7:48 pm

    I was just Googling how to prepare lobster tails and came upon your blog, first. My 12 year old son and I plan to celebrate our Valentines Day with filet mignon, lobster tails, green beans and Caesar salad. No Joke!! Thank you!

    • February 14, 2014 9:30 pm

      Fabulous! We had lobster tails, filet mignon, artichoke hearts, and iceberg wedges with blue cheese dressing tonight. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and your son!

  11. February 22, 2014 6:14 pm

    Thank you! What great tips for such a wonderful meal!

  12. March 26, 2014 2:11 pm

    Why don’t you you set up this site so that anyone can print out a particular recipe? Thanks

    • March 26, 2014 4:31 pm

      Hi Carol,
      Between the title of the recipe and the list of ingredients you’ll see (print the recipe). If you click on that you’ll get a printable copy of the recipe.
      Thanks for your question!

  13. Suzanne permalink
    March 31, 2014 1:05 pm

    Hi Carol, great idea with the wooden sticks. We are fixing these for the first time tonight.

  14. April 20, 2014 10:31 pm

    Thanks a simple easy and tasty way to prepare lobster tails. It worked for me.

  15. Dave permalink
    February 17, 2015 9:00 am

    Making Lobster Newburg tonight for my honey. For a change I will boil the tails, usually bake them. Thanks for the tip about the skewers. This is way too easy.

    • February 17, 2015 3:58 pm

      I’d say your honey is very lucky, indeed! I think you’ll love using the skewers.

  16. Brian Roy permalink
    June 14, 2015 1:58 pm

    Great tips. Boiling tails now. Thank you.

  17. February 14, 2016 8:29 pm

    Thank you. This is perfect – love the 1-minute per ounce guideline. I have 6 oz tails and look forward to enjoying them a few minutes from now with great baked squash (zuchinni and yellow) and J rose champagne followed by chocolate dipped giant strawberries for dessert. ❤

    • February 14, 2016 8:32 pm

      We had them tonight, too. Perfect for Valentine’s Day! The rest of your menu sounds fantastic!

  18. January 24, 2020 6:38 am

    I loved your tip about the skewers. It makes the process so much easier! I just had a shipment of lobster come in (I have to order online), and these were the first thing I made. So fast and simple, but so delicious.


  1. Today is the 5th Anniversary of my blog! | In the kitchen with Kath

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