Lobster tails are my favorite! I love lobsters specially grilled lobster tails.
Recently it seems that frozen lobster tails are showing up in many supermarkets, I’ve even seen them at Walmart! And they’ve become very inexpensive; my local supermarket recently had them on sale for $5.99 per tail weighing between 4-5 oz. I purchased slightly larger tails from Whole Foods for less than $10 each; very reasonable!
The availability of affordable frozen lobster tails has made brought them to our dinner table instead of being a restaurant treat on special occasions. It’s even gained a spot on our Sunday barbecues with or without company!
Lobsters or lobster tails can be steamed, boiled, baked, broiled, or grilled. I prefer tails that are grilled; whole lobsters I like boiled. Lobsters when cooked properly are incredible. The key word being properly! It’s so easy to over cook lobsters making the meat dry, rubbery, and tasteless.
In my opinion the best way to bake, broil, or grill lobster tails is to parboil them first. This partially cooks the tails so that they will bake, broil, or grill nicely and not over cooked. So here are some tips on how to grill the perfect lobster tails!
- If your tails are frozen thaw them out in the fridge until the tails can be wiggled back and forth.
- Make sure the thawed lobster tails are not spoiled. If they have a strong ammonia smell they are SPOILED and should not be consumed. (You may not be able to smell the ammonia until the tails are thawed so it’s important to check them before cooking). If you’re using fresh lobster tails you should still make sure they don’t smell like ammonia just to be safe.
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. Then reduce heat and place the thawed or fresh tails into the hot water. Let is simmer in the pot for 2-3 minutes for 4-5 oz. tails. The shell should start turning red and the meat should start to turn white on the surface.
- Have a bowl of ice water ready. Remove the partially cooked tails from the hot water and immediately place them in the bowl of ice water. This stops the cooking process.
5. Place tails on a cutting board, red shell up, and cut the tail lengthwise from the top to the beginning of the fan end. If you want the tail in one piece do not cut thru to the opposite side. If you want the halves separated cut tail all the way thru and you will have 2 halves.
6. If you are grilling tails whole with just the slit in the middle you may want to thread the tail from the fan end to the top on a metal skewer, this will keep the tail from curling when you grill them. You can do this to halves as well, but I find that halves don’t curly as much while grilling.
If you are grilling tails right away then proceed to the next step, otherwise you can drain the water from the bowl, cover the bowl and place it in the fridge to grill later. Follow the next step when you’re ready to grill.
7. Melt a stick of butter. Stir in juice from 1/2 a lemon and some garlic powder. Brush the lobster meat with the mixture. Carefully run your finger between the shell and the meat so you can brush the mixture on the meat.
8. Place the tails on the grill and cook each side about 2-3 minutes. You’ll know it’s fully cooked then the lobster meat is white not opaque or gray, and the shell is bright red.
9. Serve lobster with a lemon wedge and a small bowl of melted garlic butter for dipping.