Steamed Lobster Tails - cook times?

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Daba's BBQ

Smoking Fanatic
Original poster
Jun 24, 2021
Metro NYC
I just picked up 1/2 dozen lobster tails and want to cook them in a pit - literally. I want to dig a hole, place coals and a grate, cover the tails and steam the hell out of them. Has anyone ever done something similar? Any idea how long I would need to steam them for?


Meat Mopper
SMF Premier Member
Jul 24, 2018
Grand Forks ND
I’ve never done it but I did see it on a travel channel show once. They put wet seaweed down and all kinds of lobsters and shellfish and steamed for about an hour. Looked awesome. Sorry I’m not much help. Let us know how it goes


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Jan 27, 2015
Type and size will play a big roll in time. I'm assuming you are going to clean the vein out? Lobsters tails like gentle heat and depending on the cook method....7 to 18 mins. I "roast" them all the time and they are 15 to 18 min. it is about 350-375 at the top and these were 18 min. The split shell is for presentation and to insulate and soften the heat.

Just me but putting them in a pit in an unknown temp/environment would risk over cooking them.....most people wouldn't know if one is over cooked but I would want to be able to pull them when perfect.....

If you put a pot of butter in the pit with the cleaned tails and poached them for 10 to 12 mins then let them settle for a few more off the heat..... Yum....


Smoking Guru
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Jan 18, 2020
Western Colorado
Good luck getting advice. It’s not hard but you can google it, Manhattan clam bake will send you in the right direction.


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
OTBS Admin
Group Lead
Mar 22, 2008
I would not do them in a pit either. Depending on type lobster they may already be cooked and if not it doesn't take long nor a lot of heat.

Steve H

Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Feb 18, 2018
Newark New York
Bake, broil, grill are the best approaches. IT should be between 140-145. And the shell deep red.

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