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Steaming Lobsters

There's nothing like a steamed lobster! No, we don't mean the kind of lobster that's angry and starts raising and snapping its claws at you, or flapping its tail in rage. We mean the tasty, succulent cooking process for lobster that preserves the ocean-fresh taste and delicious flavor of the meat. Steaming gently cooks the lobster and keeps the meat tender.


If you're cooking just a couple of lobsters, a 3-4 gallon soup or pasta pot will work just fine. For cooking a bunch of lobsters, choose a larger pot or steam lobsters in batches. Just make sure the lid goes on tight to keep in the steam!


1. Choose a pot large enough to hold all the lobsters comfortably; do not crowd them. A 4- to 5-gallon pot can handle 6 to 8 pounds of lobsters.

2. Put 2 inches of seawater or salted water in the bottom of a large kettle.

3. Set steaming rack inside the pot and bring to a rolling boil over high heat.

4. Add the live lobsters one at a time, cover pot, and start timing.

5. Halfway through, lift the lid (careful – the steam is hot) and shift the lobsters around so they cook evenly.

If you're concerned about cooking time for steaming lobsters, here's a handy table to follow to determine how long to cook them:

1 Pound 10 mins.
1 1/4 Pounds 12 mins.
1 1/2 Pounds 14 mins.
1 3/4 Pounds 16 mins.
2 Pounds 18 mins.
2 1/2 Pounds 22 mins.
3 Pounds 25-30 mins.
5 Pounds 40-45 mins.

Cooked lobsters will turn bright red, which is the best indicator that they're done - but for large lobsters, you should crack one open where the carapace (the thick hard shield or bone that covers part of the lobster body) meets the tail. The cooked meat should be white and not opaque. You’ll want to carefully remove the lobsters from the pot with tongs. The lobsters will continue cooking a little even out of the pot.

Place the steamed lobsters in a bowl of ice before cracking them to stop the cooking process. Melt some butter and whisk in a little lemon juice, and it's time to eat!