Can You Cook Frozen Lobster Tails?

Lobster tails are amazing when enjoyed at peak quality. Full of flavor and vibrant color profile, broiled lobster tails are the pinnacle of satisfaction.

One major highlight of the elegant nature of lobster meat is the supreme ease of cooking them in whatever medium you’re using! Whether from frozen or thawed out state.

Lobster tails can be cooked from frozen to perfection in as little as 10 minutes depending on the size of the tail and the medium you’re cooking them in.

But most people advise thawing them first in the refrigerator before cooking as a caution to retain their tenderness.

The basis for such claim is still not yet verified. And on my own part, i have never run into a tough lobster tail from frozen unless i started with an extra large sized tail which of course is an indication of a matured specimen that lived through thick and thin of the seas and developed tougher meat with the progression of time. Or, basically overcooked my meat!

The cooking time

Of course you wouldn’t expect the same cooking time for a thawed out lobster tail on a frozen one.

There’s an approximate 30 to 50 % increment to the initial cooking time for the tail to fully reach it’s pearly and opaque glory!

Even when i know undercooking and overcooking lobster tails is nearly impossible, i’ll still throw out the triple exclamation warning out there.

Cook your lobster tails as per recipe instructions and verify the shell is bright red and the inside meat is pearly and opaque. That’s an indication of a fully cooked meat.

If the meat isn’t properly cooked, it’s interior will be gelatinous which is another way of saying unpalatable. An overcooked lobster tail on the other hand has a tough meat that is still edible!

How to thaw frozen lobster tails faster

If for some reasons you’re not buying the narrative i’m selling on frozen lobster tails, then run away from doubt by defrosting them first before cooking.

Defrosted lobster tail are still great, even though they add an extra amount of work for you.

Learn below how to defrost lobster tails using different techniques.

In the microwave

Once defrosted in the microwave you want to cook lobster tails immediately to prevent pathogenic bacteria from colonizing cold spots that may have developed during thawing.

To defrost lobster tails, take them out from the plastic bag or whatever packaging they’re in and place in a microwave safe bowl.

Cover the top of the bowl with parchment or wax paper or better still with a plastic wrap and microwave using the defrost settings for 3 minutes for a half pound tail. Make sure to turn the tail halfway!

Proceed to cook the tails using any of the techniques mentioned below.

Using cold water bath

The cold water bath is another decent alternative to thaw frozen lobster tails. Using this method, lobster tails can defrost under one hour depending on the size.

For the water bath, get a bowl and add room temperature water in it or tap water.

The remove the rock-solid lobster tail from the freezer and transfer it inside the bath making sure the openings of the packaging are tightly zipped or closed to prevent water from seeping into the tissues of the meat and cause it to become watery.

Now let sit for 30 to 60 minutes making sure to change the water after every 30 minutes so it continues defrosting.

Despite the safety of this method, there is still one caveat to it which is that you can sometimes find the meat sticking to the shell after cooking.

In the refrigerator

So far, the best method for thawing lobster tail is the refrigerator. It neither holds the meat for long in the danger zone (which allows bacteria to thrive), nor affect the overall quality of the meat. It’s a foolproof method although still the slowest amongst the three.

To thaw in the refrigerator, remove the frozen lobster from the freezer and pop it inside the refrigerator, preferably overnight because lobsters, just like chicken or beef can take long to thaw in the refrigerator.

How do you cook frozen lobster tails

There are many ways to put your recently thawed out lobster tails to tasty use: they include:

Boil it

One of the easiest ways to enjoy lobsters is by boiling them in really salty water — right inside the very kind of medium they came out from, or in ocean water. The flavors come out bright and popping and i bet the entire family will like them.

Fill a pot halfway (or more) with ocean water or heavily salted water and bring to a boil. The salted water is completely optional as you’d be just fine with tap water.

Then lower the tails one after the other into the pot and use the timing on this guide to know how to adjust the cooking time for your frozen lobster.

Remember, you take 30 percent to half the original cooking time and add it to the initial cooking time.

Always start from the lower end of the range (30) and make sure to use a meat thermometer inserted halfway into the lobster tail to verify the temperature is 145F which indicates a properly cooked meat.

Immediately transfer the cooked lobster to a bowl containing cold water and let sit for some minutes to cool. Serve as desired! (With lemon wedge and butter. (Had to say it).

Broil them

No doubt, broiling brings out the goody and yummy from any boring article, and with lobster tails, it’s never an exception.

Begin by butterflying and spreading your lobster tails (go find out what that means) if they are thawed.

Then spread the tails (cut or flesh side up) on a wire rack placed on a cookie sheet. You know what comes next don’t you?

Slather melted butter or olive oil over the tails and sprinkle salt on them. Now broil lobster tails until the shells are bright red and the meat inside is pearly and opaque.

For frozen, cook the meat for some minutes then brush over with the butter and sprinkle some salt to continue with the cooking.

Serve as desired!

Bake em

Perform similar procedures as with broiling (for thawed out tails), except this time, bake in a 350F oven and verify the internal temperature of the meat is 145F.

Grill it

Grilling is perfect when you have large number of tails to cook.

To grill, perform the same procedure as broiling for thawed out tails except this time, place the tails meat side up on a grill preheated to medium high and cook until internal temperature registers 145 F or shells turn bright red.

Steam it

It take longer to steam lobster tails than boil it. Regardless, the end result is similar, delicious!!

To steam lobster tails, put a steaming basket inside a pot, pour water to several inches into the pot but make sure it doesn’t touch the bottom of the basket, then bring to a boil.

Next, transfer the frozen lobster tail in a single layer onto the basket and cover the pot. Cook until the meat inside turns opaque and the shells are bright red.


Poaching is a delicate cooking method and as such produces pristine results in articles.

Poach lobster meat (without shells) in melted butter at a gentle simmer until fully cooked through! Served as desired! Obviously, this is only possible with thawed out lobsters.


While some opine that lobster meat is best cooked when thawed, I believe it doesn’t make any difference so long you’re adding the extra 30 to 50 percent increment to the initial cooking time.

Starting from frozen does have some disadvantage though. You wont be able to season the meat properly and neither will you be able to plate it in an interesting way!

Enjoy frozen lobsters as you would a thawed one via boiling, broiling, baking, steaming and poaching!