Buying And Thawing Lobster Tails
Frozen lobster tails can be from clawed or clawless lobsters. There are a couple of ways to tell which ones are being sold. Check the package or ask the fishmonger for the region the lobster was caught in. If it doesnt say, take a look at the color: Maine lobster tails are generally dark green-brown with hints of red. Spiny lobsters are lighter in color, with a range of relatively pale yellows and browns, and some have distinctive spots. Maine lobster tails are prized for their sweet flavor and are more expensive than spiny lobster tails, which dont cook up as sweet. Both are fine choices for grilling, but if I had to pick one over the other, Id go with Maine lobster tails.
Because lobsters must be cooked or frozen immediately after theyre killed, raw lobster tails are always sold frozen. Instead of removing the tails from whole fresh lobster, I find it easier to buy frozen lobster tails since theyre usually processed and flash frozen soon after theyre caught. I usually buy one6- to 8-ounce lobster tail per person, although you can always go smaller or larger depending on what else youre serving or what your store carries.
The best way to defrost lobster tails safely and evenly is to put them on a plate or baking sheet in a single layer in the refrigerator and let them thaw for about 24 hours. This keeps them at a safe temperature and thaws them more evenly than leaving them out at room-temperature or thawing them under cold running water.
How To Set Up The Grill For Lobster Tails
Here is the best way to set up the grill for lobster tails:
- Heat a gas grill to 350° to 400°F.
- For a charcoal grill, let the coals burn for about 10 minutes, and keep a cooler zone of indirect heat if the fire becomes too hot.
Here is a guide on how to choose the best grill whether youre in the market for a charcoal or gas grill.
How To Grill Lobster Tails With A Fan Favorite Recipe
When I talk about eating lobster with friends, I get two immediate negative responses: they are expensive, and they take effort to eat. What everyone does agree with is how good they are. While the critiques may be valid, lets take them away and better yet, take our lobster to the grill.
The easiest way to make lobster more affordable is by just buying the tail. These will almost always be frozen and are roughly the price of a good steak. Plus, the tail is all meat, so there is much less to worry about in terms of preparation.
While I agree it can be finicky trying to snatch lobster meat from a claw with butter drenched hands and an appetite clamoring for more, Ive found it best to do all of my shell prep before grilling. By working with just the tail, a pair of kitchen shears can cut the tail several different ways allowing dinner guests to immediately feast with only a knife and fork.
Lobster meat is rich and decadent and introducing the grill to the cooking process adds even more flavor. Grilled lobster meat is some of the best Ive ever had, so much so I dont always wait for a special occasion to enjoy them. Thinking of something different this holiday season, then I encourage you to check out this delightful grilled lobster tail recipe from Jamie Purviance.
Recipe fromWeber’s Real GrillingbyJamie Purviance
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Garlic Butter Grilled Lobster Tails
Do you love grilled lobster tails? This grilled lobster tail recipe with garlic lemon butter is sure to amaze your taste buds. Grilling lobster tails is a great way to cook them, and it only takes a few minutes. In this blog post, we will show you how to grill lobster tails like a pro!
If you loved this grilled lobster tail recipe, be sure to check out our other seafood recipes! We have something for everyone Sweet Cs lobster recipes are a great way to show off your culinary skills and impress your guests. Our Perfect Broiled Lobster Tails have been a hit on site for years we also have an Instant Pot Lobster Tail version, too!
This grilled lobster tail dish with garlic lemon butter is sure to do the trick for a romantic dinner, a backyard cookout, a big summer bash, or a special Sunday dinner. Give it a try today and let us know what you think in the comments below. Happy grilling!
Frozen Vs Fresh Lobsters Tails
Like so many types of seafood, it is really hard to ensure you are getting fresh and never frozen even when buying from the seafood counter. Frozen doesnt necessarily mean bad and can in some cases, be better quality if handled correctly. They can also be cheaper because there isnt an overnight and packing cost associated with keeping them fresh and selling within 24-36 hours.
If buying frozen, look for:
- Tight Packaging- Air is the enemy when freezing any food. A tight packaging, even vacuum sealed, will prevent freezer burn and other unsightly issues, giving you better flavor and a longer freezer life.
- No Ice If the tails are packaged in the generic meat counter styrofoam with plastic, make sure there are no large cubes of ice in the packaging or on the tails. This is a sign they may have been defrosted previously.
- Look for whole tails Meaning they havent been split yet. Less surface area on the meat to the air means they are kept fresher.
- Freeze Burn Freezer burn is when the food is damaged by dehydration and oxidation due to air reaching the food. It creates a dull, off-white color that is different from the unaffected area and can taste chewy or rubbery. If it has this, dont buy it!
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Open The Lobster Like A Book
3. The remaining soft membrane will keep the sections intact while exposing the meat.
4. Lobster is grilled over direct medium heat. Rub the flesh with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
5. Grill flesh side down for approximately 5-7 minutes, then flip. Figure another 4-5 minutes after you flip the tail. I am using 6-8 oz. tails here.
Basting Grilled Lobster Tails
Finish cooking flesh side up, still over direct heat.
6. At this point, its a great idea to baste the lobster with an herb butter mixture.
7. The lobster is done when its internal temperature, checked by an instant-read thermometer, reaches 135°F.
There you have it — a seafood extravaganza!
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Hard Shell Vs Soft Shell
Every so often, lobsters shed their shells when they grow out of them. Soft shell lobsters are lobsters that have recently shed their shell. So, their new shell is softer and weaker.
Generally, hard shell lobsters are the best choice because they deliver a higher meat yield and travel better.
Soft shell lobsters should only be eaten locally.
Seasoning Lobster Tails With Melted Butter
For this lobster tail recipe, youll taste the wonderful oaky flavors from your pellet smokerbut thats not all. A seasoned butter mixture with lemon juice, paprika, garlic salt, Old Bay, black pepper, and fresh parsley help make this lobster tail recipe truly the best.
This butter mixture also comes into play when you serve your lobster tails. Its the perfect dipping sauce!
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Do You Need To Boil The Lobster Tails Before Grilling
If you have managed to source raw lobster tails, theres no need to boil them first, as this could make them tough. Grilling straight from raw will produce tender, juicy meat. Lobster tails can also be bought pre-boiled, and its fine to grill these. If youre not sure what you have, look at the shell: cooked lobster will have a bright orange/pink shell, whereas raw lobsters will be dark grey/brown with tinges of blue, green or pink.
How To Prepare Lobster Tail For Grilling
There are a few different ways you can prepare a lobster before cooking. Many lobster recipes just have you cut the top part of the shell before cooking. I personally think by splitting the tail all the way in half you get better flavor and more even cooking. And more even exposure to the heat means an all-around better cooked lobster tail.
To prepare your lobster tail for grilling, use sharp kitchen shears to split the tail of the lobster open. Next, grab a sharp knife to cut through the meat of the lobster following the line you made with the shears. Take care not to cut through the membrane of the shell, only the meat itself.
Next, press your lobster tails open so the meat is fully exposed. Season the meat with salt and pepper prior to grilling.
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Why Use Lobster Tails
For many cooks, the idea of dealing with a whole, live lobster is daunting. Lobster tails are a simple alternative and contain most of the meat. You can also buy tails fully picked, dressed and ready to eat. Cooked lobster has bright orange-red shells and the flesh is white and opaque. Uncooked tails have dark-coloured shells usually grey/brown with tints that range from blue/green to red/purple and even small flecks of orange/pink. The flesh is translucent.
Grilled Lobster Tails With Orange Mustard & Dill
Create a gourmet meal in minutes with these juicy lobster tails.
- 4 green frozen lobster tails, thawed
- 60g butter, melted
- 1 orange, rind finely grated, juiced
- 1 tsp wholegrain mustard
- 2 tsp chopped fresh dill
- Select all ingredients
- Step 2 Use kitchen scissors to cut down lengthways either side of each lobster green frozen lobster tails, thawed) tail on the underside and then gently pull away the soft, flexible shell. This will expose the meat, which will remain in the body shell.
- Step 3 Combine the butter butter, melted), orange rind , 2 tablespoons of the orange juice, mustard and dill in a small bowl or jug and mix well.
- Step 4 Place the lobster tails, shell-side up, onto the lined tray. Place under preheated grill and cook for 4 minutes or until the shells turn orange. Turn the lobster tails over, brush well with the butter mixture and cook for a further 3 to 4 minutes, brushing liberally with the butter mixture frequently or until the flesh is no longer translucent.
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Here’s How To Prepare Lobster Tails For Grilling:
How Long To Grill Lobster Tails
Grilled lobster tails cook for 5-6 minutes flesh side down, followed by 1-6 minutes flesh side up, depending on the size.
TIP: A good rule of thumb for lobster tail grill time is about 60-75 seconds total time per ounce of individual tail. For example, if your lobster tails are 8 ounces each, youll grill them for 480-600 seconds total, which is 8-10 minutes. Out of that total time, 5-6 minutes would be flesh side down and the remaining time would be after flipping.
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How To Grill Lobster Tail On A Pellet Grill
Youll love this quick and easy lobster tail recipe because it will deliver the best baked lobster youve ever eaten, guaranteed!
Cooking lobster tails on your pellet smoker is a great decision. It brings wood-fired flavor from oak pellets, and this meal is ready in about 30 minutes. Enjoy with surf n turf, on their own, or with sides. Either way, these baked lobster tails are to die for.
Preparing And Grilling Lobster Tails
Once the lobster tails are thawed, theres a little more prep that needs to be done before they hit the grill. Because of their shape one end is significantly thicker than the other cooking them evenly is difficult if you keep them whole. To make sure they cook evenly and to create a wide, flat surface for melting the garlic butter, butterfly the tails first.
Butterflying means to halve something into two thinner, more even pieces. For a lobster tail, this means cutting through the hard shell with kitchen shears, then slicing the tail meat in half so that it can open up flat like a book. One other step worth doing is using your fingers to loosen the meat from the shell, which will make it easier to remove the meat once the lobster is cooked. Once butchered properly, the lobster tail meat will cook up evenly without the need for skewers or other tools to keep it from curling up.
To grill the lobster tails, place them meaty-side down on a really hot grill for a few minutes to get some grill marks. Once they release easily from the grill grates, flip them over and top with an easy-to-make garlic butter . The total cook time depends on the size of the tail. You want the meat to be just cooked through, so aim for an internal temperature of 135 to 140ºF. Serve with lemon wedges for a nice bright pop of flavor to cut through the richness of the garlic butter and the sweetness of the lobster meat.
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How To Split Lobster Tail
You can either split the lobster tail all the way before cooking, or butterfly them, but leave them attached in one piece. To butterfly lobster tail, use sharp kitchen shears to cut the top shell from the open end of the lobster tail all the way to the end of the tail, but dont cut through the end of the tail. Then use a sharp knife to slice the lobster meat down the middle stopping a little over halfway though the meat, following the line where you cut the shell. Then spread open the tail a bit it will open further upon cooking.
Or, to split the tail all the way though , follow the above directions, but slice all the way through the bottom of the shell so the lobster tail come apart into two long halves. This is a good way to go if you are serving other things besides lobster, and want to make sure everyone gets a serving of lobster but has room for other grilled offerings. Think of it for surf and turf meals , or for mixed seafood grills .
Fresh Lobster Vs Frozen Lobster
You can purchase frozen lobster tails. Our advice? Dont.
Fresh lobster will bring the best flavor. Once a lobster dies, it can spoil in as little as one hour. If you must go with frozen, be sure youre only getting tails or claws. Whole lobsters should always be fresh.
Now, when it comes to choosing a fresh lobster, you need to make sure its healthy. Heres how:
Lobsters that dont move are generally unfit to eat.
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Grilled Lobster Recipes To Try This Summer
Corey Williams is a food writer covering food news, step-by-step cooking, baking, and storage guides for MyRecipes and Allrecipes. She has a decade of journalism experience, and her work has been featured in Southern Living, Cooking Light, Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, and Better Homes & Gardens.
Get outside and fire up the grill you’ll want to make these lobster recipes all summer long. Though lobster is sure to impress even your most discerning cookout guests, it’s deceptively easy to make on the grill. Each of these simple recipes comes together in less than an hour without a ton of fancy ingredients. Whether you’re looking for a basic seafood recipe seasoned with just salt and pepper or stuffed tails for decadent dinners, you’ll find a delicious new favorite in this collection of our best grilled lobster recipes.
Butterfly Your Lobster Tails For Grilling
My favorite way to prep the lobster tails for grilling is to butterfly them. To do this, take a pair of kitchen shears or a knife, make a lengthwise slit down the center of the hard side of the shell but go no further than the start of the fanned part of the tail.
Use a knife to cut the meat along the same path as the shell cut line, being careful not to slice all the way through the lobster.
To butterfly, gently open the shell like a book, keeping the back of the meat connected to the under-shell, and brush the flesh with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
Simply Recipes / Sally Vargas
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How Long To Grill Lobster Tail
It takes 10-12 minutes to grill lobster tail. Begin by placing the lobster tails cut side down on the grill grates and cook for 6 minutes. Next, flip them and grill for another 4-6 minutes aiming for the internal temperature to reach 145 degrees F.
Keep in mind, this time can vary slightly depending on the size of your tails and the exact temperature of your grill.