Food Quantities

How Much Lobster Per Person?

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Cooking lobster can be an exquisite experience, but it requires precision, especially when preparing for a crowd. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about buying, cooking, and serving lobster, ensuring a delightful dining experience. From serving sizes to nutritional facts and cooking methods, let’s dive into the world of lobster cuisine.

Understanding Lobster

Lobster Varieties: Lobsters come in various sizes, typically ranging from 1 1/4 lbs to 1 1/2 lbs, although they can grow larger with age. Recognizing that lobsters are crustaceans is crucial, given their powerful claws capable of exerting 1,000 pounds of pressure per square inch.

Serving Size

Recommended Serving Size: When serving lobster as the main course, plan for one lobster per person. A 1 1/4 lbs lobster is ideal, yielding approximately 4 to 7 ounces of cooked meat. However, preferences may vary, with some suggesting a 1 1/2 lbs lobster per person, offering 6-8 ounces of meat.

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Considerations for Crowds: For larger gatherings, serving lobster as part of a surf and turf or incorporating it into dishes like lobster bisque can help manage quantities.

 Nutritional Facts

Lobster’s Health Benefits: Lobster is low in saturated fats, rich in protein, and contains essential nutrients such as zinc, vitamin B-12, and omega-3 fatty acids. With only 129 calories per cup of cooked lobster, it also provides calcium, potassium, and iron.

Soft-Shelled vs. Hard-Shelled Lobster

Understanding Lobster Molt: Lobsters molt annually, resulting in soft-shelled and hard-shelled variations. Soft-shelled lobsters, prevalent in summer, are sweeter but contain less meat, while hard-shelled lobsters are favored for their taste and higher meat content.

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Dangers of Uncooked Lobster

Risks of Undercooked Lobster: Consuming undercooked or raw lobster poses the risk of vibriosis, a type of food poisoning caused by the vibrio bacteria. Proper cooking is crucial to eliminate bacteria, preventing symptoms such as diarrhea, stomach cramps, fever, vomiting, and nausea.

How to Cook Lobster

Boiling Lobsters: Boiling lobsters involves a large pot, salted water, and a cooking time of 12-18 minutes. The lobster is ready when the shell turns bright red.

Steaming Lobsters: Steaming lobsters is similar to boiling but with the lobsters elevated above the water in a steaming basket. Cooking time ranges from 15-17 minutes, ensuring the meat is white and fully cooked.

 Tips for Easy Lobster Cooking

1. Sedate the Lobster: To make handling easier, briefly freeze lobsters before cooking to slow them down.

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2. Leave Rubber Bands on Claws: Keep the rubber bands on live lobsters while cooking to facilitate handling and avoid pinching.

3. Check Meat Doneness: Ensure lobster meat is fully cooked by checking its color (white, not translucent or grey) or testing if the antenna easily comes off.


Mastering the art of cooking lobster involves a blend of understanding, technique, and safety precautions. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a novice, this guide equips you with the knowledge needed to prepare a perfect lobster dish for any occasion. From serving the right size to ensuring optimal doneness, elevate your lobster cooking skills and treat your guests to an unforgettable culinary experience.

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