How to cook an Instant Pot lobster tail steamed to tender and delicious is here. Pressure cooked lobster in Ninja foodi or Crockpot Express works well too. If you loved our Instant Pot shrimp boil seafood recipe this will be a family favorite too.
Lobster tails in Instant Pot come out great. NO need to wait for water to boil to steam them perfectly anymore. Just add some water or broth and a few of these and in no time you’ll get fork tender meat you can dip in garlic butter for dinner. One of our easy Instant Pot recipe we love. (post may contain affiliate links present)
Ninja Foodi Lobster Tail
Now if you are new to using a pressure cooker that is okay, we will walk you thru it. The brand doesn’t matter, we have them all. Makes a great Ninja Foodi recipe too using the lid that is not attached and the pressure cook button on the front.
In the past when I have made other seafood pieces like Instant Pot shrimp I have always used a vegetable steamer to keep them out of the water. I do this for these too when defrosted. If frozen though you cannot cut the shell to expose the meat so I just set them into the water instead. Will explain both below.
FIRST – You should sign up for my free newsletter so you get new posts emailed to you twice a week and never miss out on anything! Now let’s start with a few basic tips:
- Make sure to Bookmark our InstaPot recipes page. We add new ones each week!
- Then PRINT this —–> Instant Pot cooking times cheat sheet that will help you understand how long meat, vegetables and beans take to cook in your pressure cooker.
For reference, this is the pressure cooker I have (a 6 quart) and use for all recipe creations.
Pressure Cooker Lobster Tails
BEST RESULTS – Method 1 Instant Pot lobster tails recipe = if they are defrosted you want to pull the meat out first so you can season them before steaming you can follow these steps;
- Butterfly the tail by cutting down the middle of the top of the shell.
- Pry it open to lift out the meat, and place it on top of the shell with it still attached at the end.
- Mix together 1 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tbsp. melted butter, dash of smoked paprika and garlic powder, 1 tsp. lemon juice, and 1/2 tsp. minced garlic in a small bowl
- Brush the garlic butter mixture onto the meat.
- Place a trivet into the bottom of the pot, add the water, set tails directly onto the trivet.
- Put the lid on, turn the valve to the sealing position.
- Set to high pressure for 1 minute.
- When done, perform a quick pressure release, lift lid, allow to sit inside the pot for another 10 minutes with lid on before serving.
If you do not want to remove the meat and just want to put in with the shell as is, or if they are frozen you wouldn’t be able to cut well either. Follow these instructions;
- Place lobster tails in the pot with 1 cup of water or broth for more flavor.
- Close lid and steam valve.
- Cook on high pressure for 2 minutes
- Quick release, lift lid, leave tails inside pot for 10 minutes to rest and continue to cook in hot water.
- Melt butter, can add some minced garlic into the mix or make our cajun garlic butter sauce for dipping.
How to Cook Frozen Lobster Tails
If you have frozen lobster tails in Instant Pot you will need to cook for 2 – 4 minutes depending on their size. I always suggest purchasing small around 3 ounces in size each. Especially if cooking together they should all be the same for best results.
Steaming Lobster Tails
This is similar to how to steam lobster tails on the stove, but a lot faster. It is a popular and delicious way to cook these prized seafood delicacies. Steaming helps to preserve the natural flavor and tenderness of the lobster meat while ensuring it cooks evenly, here’s a simple guide on how to steam them:
- To steam lobster tails, you’ll need the following:
- Fresh or frozen tails only. Ensure they are properly thawed if frozen for best results.
- You’ll need a large pot with a steamer insert or a steaming basket to hold them above the water.
- Sufficient water or broth to create steam in the pot.
- Optional, you can season the water.
- Fill the pot with enough water to create steam but not so much that it touches the steamer insert or basket. If desired, add salt to the water for additional seasoning. Bring the water to a rolling boil.
- While the water is heating, prepare them by using kitchen shears or a sharp knife. Carefully cut down the center of the top shell, lengthwise, stopping just before reaching the tail fin.
- Gently pry open the shell to expose the lobster meat, but keep the tail intact.
- You can also loosen the meat from the shell slightly to make it easier to eat after cooking.
- Once the water is boiling, place them on the steamer insert or in the steaming basket, making sure they are not submerged in the water. Cover the pot with a lid to trap the steam.
- This will take about 8-10 minutes cooking time, depending on their size.
- The shells should turn bright red, and the meat should be opaque and firm but still tender.
- To confirm that they are fully cooked, you can use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the meat, away from the shell. The temperature should reach at least 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Once cooked, carefully remove from the steamer and let them cool slightly before serving. Serve them as is or with melted butter, lemon wedges, or your favorite dipping sauces.
- These are often enjoyed alongside sides like steamed vegetables, rice, or a fresh salad.
Both of these methods allows you to savor their natural flavor and tenderness without excessive added fats or oils. It’s a relatively quick and easy method that yields impressive results. So, grab some, follow these steps, and treat yourself to a delectable seafood feast!
Lobster Tails Instant Pot
Now I have discussed cooking under pressure or steamed on the stovetop here. Those are the best results as boiling will leach out the vitamins and flavor when submerged into boiling water. I would not recommend air fryer lobster tails as the whole point of this food is to get it as tender as possible, crisping wouldn’t do that.
In an Instant Pot you only need 1 minute believe it or not. Boiled lobster tails submerged into boiling water takes 5 minutes and steamed lobster tails takes about 8 minutes.
When done the meat should be white without a translucent look to it. If you can still see a sort of see thru color to the protein you should cook an additional minute, and check again until it is completely white in color and shells are bright pinkish red.
Depending on their size it will take 2-4 minutes under high pressure to cook meat until they are white in color. It is helpful to release steam and allow to sit in the pot for another 10 minutes with the lid removed when done to rest as well for the best texture.
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Instant Pot Lobster Tail
- 2 small lobster tails fresh or frozen
- 1 c water
- butter melted to dip
- ** If frozen ** Place lobster tails in the instant pot with 1 cup of water or broth for more flavor. Close lid and steam valve.
- Cook on high pressure for 2 minutes for small, 4 minutes for very large followed by a quick release, lift lid, leave tails inside pot for 10 minutes to rest and continue to cook in hot water
- Cut shells along top and remove meat.
- Melt butter, can add some minced garlic and garlic salt into the mix for dipping.
- ** If defrosted I recommend releasing the meat before cooking and follow these steps **
- Butterfly the tail by cutting down the middle of the top of the shell. Pry it open to lift out the meat, and place it on top of the shell with it still attached at the end. Mix together 1 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tbsp. melted butter, dash of smoked paprika, 1 tsp. lemon juice, and 1/2 tsp. minced garlic in a small bowl
- Brush the garlic butter mixture onto the meat. Place a trivet into the bottom of the pot, add the water, set tails directly onto the trivet.Put the lid on, turn the valve to the sealing position.
- Set to high pressure for 1 minutes. When done, perform a quick pressure release, lift lid, keep tails inside pot for 10 minutes, then lift out and serve.