How To Butterfly A Lobster Tail Perfectly?

How To Butterfly A Lobster Tail Perfectly?

Are you new to the “lobster world”? Are you struggling when processing and cooking lobster tails? If your answer is yes, congratulations on getting to the right destination! In today’s article, Fishermen’s Net is going to provide you with the full instruction on how to butterfly a lobster tail.  

how to butterfly a lobster tail

The Reasons Why You Should Butterfly A Lobster Tail?

Each chef will have his or her own style when it comes to processing an ingredient and displaying a dish. Despite that, some of the ingredients require the chef with the same specific skills. Particularly, butterflying is a common technique which almost every chef has to master when cooking lobster tails. 

Probably, many of you here are familiar with how to cook or how to eat lobster tail without knowing why we should butterfly it. Here are the two main reasons.  

  • Making the lobster tails more attractive: Butterflying a lobster tail helps a lot with the displaying part. Specifically, as you cook, the lobster meat will begin to puff up over the shell. As a result, it certainly brings your dish a more delicious and livelier look. Most high-class restaurants are keen on this showy presentation. 
  • Making the lobster tails easier to cook: Besides from looking fabulous, butterflying a lobster tail also helps you to cook the meat thoroughly. Moreover, butterfly style offers you flexibility, since you can bake, broil, roast or grill your own lobster tail.

Whichever cooking method to choose depends on your preferences and purposes. There is just one thing you need to ensure right from the beginning is to process this high-quality ingredient properly. Please continue reading for more details on how to butterfly a lobster tail recipe.

Full Instruction On How To Butterfly A Fresh Lobster Tail

With kitchen scissors, starting at the open end of the tail, cut a line lengthwise through the center, top of the shell, stopping just before the tail fins. As you do this, you'll also cut into the meat, which will butterfly the meat and make it sit on to the shell better.

You can follow step-by-step with the recipe below

Step 1: Open the shell by cutting

Most of the lobster tails recipe starts with the action of cutting open the shell. However, many people are afraid of this process, since they are worried that they can ruin this expensive ingredient. In fact, it is not that complicated as you think. Let Fishermen’s Net help you!

To cut open the lobster shell, you can either use a kitchen shears or a sharp knife. If you choose to get the work done with a knife, be extra careful not to slice through the shell’s bottom.

how to butterfly a lobster tail in shape of heart

Now, get started by placing the tail shell side up on a flat surface such as a chopping board or a table. Hold the lobster tail with your one hand, then use either mentioned tools to cut through the top of it. Continue cutting towards the base of the lobster tail. You should remember not to touch the tail fan or under-shell, since they need to be left attached and intact. When you are done, let’s move to step 2!

Step 2: Separate the lobster meat from the shell

If you want to separate the lobster meat from the shell, you need to open the shell first. Use your thumbs and fingers to grab each side of the shell, then gently spread the halves of the lobster tail apart. Our advice for you is that you should slowly complete the action in order to keep the back of the meat attached to the under-shell. If you have done this right, the lobster meat will be clearly visible.

Now, it is time for you to lift the lobster meat over the shell. Use your thumbs to press down and push the meat apart from the shell halves. Then, carefully tug the lobster meat to help it come off the bottom shell. While doing this, you should ensure to keep the back of the meat connected near the tail fan. Next, gently pull the lobster meat upward. The last thing that you need to do is squeeze the shell halves back together beneath the meat. This is to help the meat secure on top of the shell. 

how to butterfly a lobster tail for grilling

Step 3: Season and cook the lobster tail

Having done all the steps above, you are half way of creating a “masterpiece”. A delicious dish cannot be completed without seasoning; therefore, remember to season the lobster meat before cooking it, and there are many spices you can use for lobster, read more in the Lobster Spices article. In addition, you should insert a wooden or metal skewer lengthwise to keep the lobster meat flat. 

As we mentioned in the first section, there are many techniques for you to choose when cooking lobster tails. If you choose the grilled recipe, the internal temperature of the meat should reach 135°F. On the other hand, if you decide on the baked lobster tails recipe, the temperature should be between 140 and 145°F. Take out the lobster when it is half-way cooked, and use a thermometer to check on its internal temperature. 

When displaying the lobster tail onto the dish, do not forget to remove the skewer from it.

To make it easier, you can follow this video!

How To Serve Your Butterflied Lobster Tail?

If you feel that coating cooked lobster with melted butter is the old way of eating and want to change it up a bit. You can use garlic butter, some paprika, parsley, and 2 garlic cloves. Or sprinkle a little Cajun seasoning, a little salt, squeeze half a lemon with herbs and butter last. At the same time, chili seasoning will also make the dish more flavorful, suitable for those who like spicy food.

Besides, what to serve with lobster tail is also an important thing you should keep in mind. Because you don't want the flavor of the lobster to be overpowered, but instead enhance the sweet, delicate flavor of the lobster. Let us suggest some side dishes such as squash soup, corn chips or cucumber salad, Caprese salad,... Or some starchy dishes like wild rice, pate bread, cheddar biscuits, Italian bread,...

Through this article, Fishermen’s Net wants to give you an overview of how to butterfly a lobster tail. Also, we hope that our instruction benefits you and your family with delicious lobster dishes.


Visit our blog for more useful tips related to lobster. Feel free to contact us via the below contact information if you have any further questions or requests. 

  • Website:
  • Address: 849 Forest Ave, Portland, ME 04103.
  • Tel: +1 (207) 772-3565.
Back to blog

Our Best Selling

Here you will find some of our most often purchases as well our specials that we are currently running