This Lobster Dinner Is Easier Than You’d Think. Here’s How to Make It.

Rich, buttery and melt-in-your-mouth delicious, lobster is a special occasion favorite. Learn how to make a simple and scrumptious lobster recipe right at home–our Test Kitchen will walk you through with four easy steps.

When it comes to special occasion dinners, there’s no beating lobster. The lavish presentation, the drawn butter, the melt-in-your-mouth consistency all make lobster a meal to savor. But you don’t have to limit your lobster cravings to your favorite seafood restaurant or steakhouse (and when it comes to steakhouse-style recipes, we’ve got you covered). In fact, learning how to cook lobster tail is simple.

If you haven’t tried your hand at homemade lobster before, don’t worry. Our Test Kitchen staff has broken this down into four easy steps. All it takes is a little patience and a little extra butter. Let’s dive right in and learn how to make this special occasion seafood.

How to Cook Lobster Tail at Home

For this special occasion treat, we’ll follow this five-star recipe here. You’ll need:

  • 4 lobster tails (5 to 6 ounces each), thawed
  • 1/4 cup cold butter, cut into thin slices
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Lemon wedges

Step 1: Snip

Person using a scissors to cut the shell of a lobster tailTMB Studio

To make the perfect lobster at home, we recommend you start by making lobster tails. The tail holds most of the crustacean’s meat and they’re readily available in your grocer’s freezer section.

Now, to get going on your homemade lobster tail, careful use kitchen scissors to cut and remove a two-inch wide rectangle from the top shell of each lobster tail. Be mindful not to dig in too deeply and mar the meat inside.

Step 2: Loosen

Person peeling back the shell from a lobster tailTMB Studio

With that section of the tail removed, loosen the shells edges to release the meat.

Step 3: Separate

Person peeling back the shell from a lobster tailTMB Studio

Once the meat is loosened slightly, gently pry the lobster meat loose from the bottom shell, keeping it attached at the tail end. You don’t want to remove the meat from the shell, but you do want it to be easy to remove once it’s cooked and you’re ready to eat.

Step 4: Broil

Person putting squares of butter on the opened lobster tailsTMB Studio

Place your lobster tails on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Line butter slices along the meat where that two-inch section of shell once was. Broil these in the oven, about five to six inches away from the heat. Cook until the meat is opaque, five to eight minutes. Once your lobster is cooked, season with salt and pepper and serve with a few lemon wedges.

Test Kitchen tip: If you want to add even more flavor to your lobster, substitute flavored compound butters for plain butter pats.

Person sprinkling salt over lobster tails on a baking sheetTMB Studio

Now, we know that this lobster recipe is delicious enough on its own, but real lobster-lovers might want to take this tail one step farther with drawn butter. To make your own clarified butter at home is simple, and we highly recommend it for the richest lobster possible.

How to Make Clarified Butter

Step 1: Simmer

Person melting butter in a pot on the stovePhoto: Taste of Home

In a heavy saucepan, melt one cup of unsalted butter over low heat. Let this simmer until the solids and fats from the butter separate—about ten minutes. Be mindful to keep this over low heat and to not let the butter brown—then you’d be on your way to browned butter which is something else entirely (and is exceptionally tasty in desserts like these pumpkin bars).

Step 2: Skim

Person skimming the surface foam from their melted butterPhoto: Taste of Home

Once your butter is entirely melted, remove from the heat and skim the surface foam. This should leave you with clear, yellow liquid.

Step 3: Strain

Person pouring their melted butter through a strainer and into a measuring cupPhoto: Taste of Home

Skimming your butter should remove most of those milk solids, but to make the clearest clarified butter possible, our Test Kitchen recommends pouring it through a fine mesh strainer or a strainer lined with cheesecloth. You can use this butter right away for dunking or you can store it in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three months or in the freezer for up to six.

Served side-by-side, this lobster tail and drawn butter is the perfect treat for celebrations and special occasions. If you want to go classic, serve them with warm cheddar biscuits.

Lobster tails on a baking sheet with butter and lemon wedgesTaste of Home

Hungry for More? Check Out Our Red Lobster Copycat Recipes
1 / 28

Lisa Kaminski
Lisa is a former Taste of Home editor and passionate baker. During her tenure, she poured her love of all things sweet (and sometimes savory) into Bakeable, Taste of Home's baking club. Lisa also dedicated her career here to finding and testing the best ingredients, kitchen gear and home products for our Test Kitchen-Preferred program. At home, you'll find her working on embroidery and other crafts.