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How to Eat Lobster the Right Way

Cooked Maine Lobster

Did you know that lobsters are more closely related to insects than to fish? 

This doesn't stop them from being a veritable delicacy (and much better tasting than insects)!

If you're new to eating lobster, then you're in for a treat. However, you will also be in for a mess if you don't know about the basic steps involved in how to crack into a lobster.

Fortunately, as the experts in all things Maine lobster, we're here to help. Read on to find out how to eat lobster, the right way. 

Assemble the Right Utensils

If you're wondering how to go about eating lobster at home, the first step is to assemble the right utensils. If you're having lobster in a restaurant, these will usually be provided for you. 

The most important things you will need are a lobster cracker and a lobster pick. If you don't have these on hand you can also use a nutcracker and a small pronged fork. 

Besides this, you'll probably also want to deck yourself out in either a lobster bib, a large napkin tucked into your shirt, or an apron. 

Eating a whole lobster can be a messy process, which is why you may want to protect your clothing. You can also spread the table you're going to be working on with newspaper or a tablecloth you don't mind getting splatters on. 

Lastly, you should also grab a bowel for dumping the discarded shells into. 

Start With the Claws

The first step in how to crack into a lobster is detaching the claws. Although you can eat lobster in any order, detaching the claws first makes sense as they can get in the way when tackling the rest of the parts. 

Grasp the claws at the base where the joint connects to the body. Give them a twist until they come free. Then wiggle the smaller hinged section off of each claw. 

If you're lucky, you might be able to get some meat out of these, however, often they just contain tendon. 

Next, twist off the "thumb" parts of the claw by breaking them off at the joint. From here you should be able to pull out the meat from that area with your lobster pick or small fork. 

Once that's done you can move on to the larger part of the claw. For this, you will need to use your lobster cracker or nutcracker.

Simply squeeze the claw until the shell cracks. Then open it up, scoop out the flesh, and discard the shell. 

Move on to the Legs

Once you've dealt with the claw, the next step in eating a Maine lobster is to remove the legs. They usually come off easily with just a twist or two. 

Some people discard the legs entirely, but if you love lobster as much as we do you'll probably want to crack open the legs and see what meat you can get. 

If you're not averse to making slurping noises at the table, you can simply suck the flesh out of the legs. Or you can use your lobster pick to prise it out. 

If you're eating at home, you can even use a rolling pin to push the leg meat out from its shell. 

Crack off the Tail

Next up, it's time to tackle the tail. Many people learn how to eat lobster tail before learning how to crack into a whole lobster. 

However, if you're new to lobster tail—or whole eating a whole lobster—the first step is to break it off from the body. 

Take the lobster with body hands and twist the tail. It should detach easily with just this wrist action. Once it's free, place it with the soft shell side down and squeeze it. 

This should break the underside shelled, and allow you to remove the tail meat in one large piece. 

You should see a black vein running down the center of the meat. This is the lobster's intestines, which you can remove and discard. Although it isn't toxic, most of us want to eat lobster meat, not intestines.

Remove Any Meat From the Body

To finish up eating your lobster, take the remaining body and slice it down the underside. This is sometimes easiest done on a cutting board. 

Once you have got the lobster open, pick out any pieces of meat that you see. You'll also probably come across a greenish/gray substance. This is known as the tomalley and is the lobster's liver. 

Although some eat it as a delicacy, the FDA has warned against this, especially with Maine lobster, thanks to potentially dangerous levels of toxins.

If you are eating a lobster that is a female, you might also find lobster roe inside the body. Often known as "coral", these eggs are usually reddish in color. While edible, they aren't always the tastiest part of the lobster. 

Selecting and Preparing Your Lobster

If you going to eat lobster at home, then you'll not only want to know how to crack into a lobster—but also how to prepare a whole lobster. 

The first place to start when looking to prepare Maine lobster at home is selecting your lobster. Always vet for freshness and quality. 

If you are buying lobster in person, inspect the lobsters and avoid ones that look limp, damaged, cloudy-eyed, or otherwise unhealthy. 

If you are buying online, make sure you go with a trusted seller that specializes in supplying fresh lobster, and which has fast delivery times. 

Once you have selected a premium lobster, preparing it is relatively simple. All you will need to do is fill a large pot 3/4 way full of salted water, bring it to a boil, and gently drop in your lobsters. 

Depending on their size you will need to boil them for 10-20 minutes, then remove, drain, and serve. 

Guess What? Now You Know How to Eat Lobster Like a Pro

Eating lobster isn't all that hard once you know the steps and tools involved. It can be a bit of a process, but a highly delicious one!

Now that you know how to eat lobster like a veritable "seafoodie," are you on the hunt for fresh Maine lobster? If so, you've come to the right place. 

We stock premium live Maine lobster, freshly caught from our cold Maine waters. We also stock lobster tails and prepared lobster meat. You can't get it easier, or fresher, than from us. 

Browse our Maine lobster options to place an order and enjoy overnight shipping to anywhere in the US. 

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