How to reheat lobster

How to reheat lobster the right way?

Do you have some leftover lobster from last night’s lavish dinner that’s too good to go into the doggy bag? Or maybe you bought some pre-cooked lobster at the store and you’re wondering how to reheat it.

It’s possible to heat cooked lobster meat, the claws, the tail, or even the whole lobster so that it’s just as tender and delicious as you’d expect. You can use different methods on the stovetop, in the oven, or the microwave regardless of whether the lobster is pre-cooked or frozen. Here’s how to reheat lobster to achieve that delicate taste that no other seafood comes close to replicating.

To reheat or not to reheat

The most important thing you need to know is the amount of time that the cooked lobster has been in the fridge (assuming that the fridge is adequately cold at lower than 40° Fahrenheit). If the lobster has been in the fridge for one or two days, it should be fine to reheat. If it’s been in the fridge for three or four days, you should be wary: check the lobster for any unusual appearances or odors. If your lobster has been in the fridge for more than four days, you should never reheat it. It’s also safe to defrost and reheat but the quality declines within four months of freezing.

What happens when lobster is reheated?

It’s possible to reheat cooked lobster to result in a dish that’s just as tender and delicious as you’d hope for. However, if you overheat the lobster, it will result in a tough and stringy texture. It’s best to heat the meat to 165° Fahrenheit to destroy any harmful bacteria that could lead to foodborne illness. To test the internal temperature of the food, poke a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the lobster to check the temperature.

It’s best to use an instant-read thermometer towards the end of the cooking time because it gives accurate readings quickly. These thermometers are not oven-safe and should not be left in the meat during cooking. Leave the thermometer in the meat for only 15 seconds before reading the temperature. Continue heating until it reaches the recommended temperature.

How to reheat lobster

The most important thing is to remember to be gentle when reheating the cooked meat because you don’t want a dry and tasteless result. Remember, the meat is already cooked so you just want to warm it up and there are multiple methods to do so.

Using the oven to reheat cooked lobster

Using the oven is one of the best methods because it’s gentle and slow and you can easily control the temperature and time.

  1. Preheat the oven to approximately 350° Fahrenheit.
  2. Place the lobster in an oven-safe dish along with some liquid such as the lobster sauce, butter, or stock. Cover with aluminum foil. (Hint: it doesn’t matter whether the shiny side of the foil faces inwards or outwards!)
  3. Heat for approximately 10 minutes or until the lobster is heated through.
  4. Remove from the oven and serve.

How to heat up cooked lobster on the stovetop

The stovetop method is a quick, easy and effective way to go.

  1. Remove the lobster from the shell.
  2. Choose a pot or pan that’s big enough to heat the lobster evenly throughout.
  3. Heat a little stock or broth in the pot and add some butter if desired.
  4. Once the liquid has reached a simmer, add the lobster.
  5. Heat for about 10 minutes to warm throughout, and then add some more butter for flavor if desired. 
  6. Remove from the pot or pan and serve.

Can you reheat lobster tail?

Fresh is best for the fleshy lobster tail, but if you have leftovers, you can use the oven or stovetop methods as described above to reheat.

How to reheat lobster claws

Lobster claws are best reheated in the oven. Follow the method described above, remembering to wrap the lobster claws in aluminum foil.

How to reheat cooked lobster in its shell

Follow the oven method as detailed above. Cut the lobster in half and lay it on a baking tray with some liquid such as stock or lobster sauce. Cover it with foil. Bake for 10 to 20 minutes or until warmed through.

Alternatively, follow the stovetop method as detailed above. In a pot that’s large enough for the whole lobster, place the lobster on its back in a steamer basket and add a little water to cover the bottom of the pot. Bring the water to the boil and cover the pot. Reheat for five to eight minutes or until warmed through. Remove from the pot and let it cool down before serving.

How to reheat lobster in the microwave

This is not the best method for reheating this delicacy, but the microwave retains its place on this list because it’s quick and affordable.

  1. Remove the lobster meat from the shell.
  2. Wrap up the lobster meat in a clean damp cotton towel and place in the middle of a microwave-safe container.
  3. Heat on a medium to high setting for one minute at a time until the lobster is hot throughout.
  4. Remove from the microwave, unwrap from the towel, and serve.

Storing cooked lobster

You can keep cooked lobster leftovers for two to three days in the refrigerator. Store the leftovers in an airtight container, sealed plastic bag, or wrapped in aluminum foil. To be safe, discard any cooked lobster that’s not reheated within four days. Cooked lobster freezes well if stored sealed and covered in brine.

What to make with cold leftover lobster

Careful reheating following the methods above offers a good chance of retaining the original flavor and texture of the jewel of the ocean, however, reheating your lobster does have the potential to make it tough and chewy. To avoid ruining your prize lobsters, you can always use leftover lobster for salad or lobster rolls.

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