Our New England lobster roll recipe uses just a few ingredients to complement the lobster so its naturally sweet flavor shines through.

Five lobster rolls on a plate with lemon wedges.

Served with potato chips and some homemade coleslaw on the side, this classic, easy-to-make sandwich is a real New England treat.

What makes a good lobster roll

When it comes to making lobster rolls most New Englanders will tell you that the fewer ingredients you use, the better they’ll taste.

What’s generally considered authentic varies a little between the states, but the most basic version is simply a combination of meat from the lobster’s tail and claws and a little mayonnaise served in a buttered, split-top hot dog bun.

Our recipe includes a little bit of minced celery and scallion to add a bit of crunch, freshly-squeezed lemon juice, and just enough mayonnaise to complement the natural sweetness of the lobster without overwhelming its fabulous flavor.

Tips for cooking lobster

You can use either whole lobsters (our recommendation) or lobster tails (previously frozen is fine) to make lobster rolls. As far as quantity goes, you’ll need three 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 pound whole lobsters or five 6-ounce cold water (Maine) lobster tails for this recipe that serves four.

How to boil whole lobsters:

Bring a very large pot of salted water (1 tablespoon salt per quart) to a boil. Add the lobsters, head first, cover the pot and start timing them as soon as the water returns to a boil. Boil until the lobsters turn bright red, 7 to 8 minutes. Using tongs, remove the lobsters from the water and set aside until cool enough to handle.

How steam lobster tails:

Using a large knife, split each tail in half lengthwise, then add them to a steamer in a single layer, cut side up. You’ll most likely need to work in batches. Cover tightly and steam the lobster tails just until the meat turns opaque, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the pot and repeat the process with the remaining tails.

Lobster roll on a plate with lemon wedge

More lobster recipes:

New England Lobster Rolls

New England Lobster Rolls

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Our New England lobster roll recipe uses just a few ingredients to complement the lobster so its naturally sweet flavor shines through.


  • 1 lb cooked cold water, Maine lobster meat, cut into small chunks (see below)
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
  • 1 tablespoon chopped scallions, green tops only
  • 2 tablespoons celery, finely chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 soft, top-split hot dog rolls


  • In a small bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, mayonnaise and mustard until smooth.
  • Add the lobster, scallions and celery, combine well and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Brush the insides of each roll with the melted butter, reserving about 1 tablespoon. Toast the buttered rolls until lightly golden on the inside.
  • Divide the lobster mixture between the rolls and drizzle a bit of the remaining butter over top of each. Serve immediately.
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