Smoked Lobster Tail

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Smoked Lobster Tail is the definition of decadent and indulgent. It’s incredibly juicy, tender, and full of flavor on its own. You hardly need any seasonings to enjoy smoked seafood to its fullest! Do your best to resist the smoky aroma, and less than 30 minutes later, you’ll be feasting on Traeger lobster tail!

titled: Smoked Lobster Tail


Smoked Lobster Tail

Fresh lobster is delicious no matter how you eat it, but smoking takes it to a whole new level!

The tender flesh takes in that rich smoky flavor while enhancing the sweet, fresh, salty taste of the meat. Smoked lobster is a simple, mouthwatering delight! 

Learning how to smoke lobster tail is even simpler than the seasonings on it.

fresh lobster tails with ingredients for smoking

This luxurious-tasting main course that is best in the summer months, when lobsters are in season. But, you can often find fresh shellfish in stores during the month of December for the holidays.

Smoked lobster tail is an amazing feast for New Year’s Eve!! Each buttery bite melts in your mouth and bursts with flavorful juices and seasonings! 

If you love seafood and want to make a big seafood feast, consider smoking salmon and shrimp as well — or, try our incredible steamed clams.

You could also create a surf and turf platter with smoked roast beef or brisket.

butter sauce ingredients in bowl

Ingredient Notes and Substitutions

  • Lobster – There is an art to picking the right shellfish, but it doesn’t have to be tricky! Look for these main qualities: caught in cold water, hard-shelled, and no discoloration.

    Also, make sure the tails are roughly the same weight for even cooking.
  • Italian Flat Leaf Parsley – Italian parsley has a strong, fresh flavor that is perfect for smoked seafood!

    You can certainly use curly-leaf parsley if you must, but you will really taste the difference with the flat-leaf.
  • Chili Paste – A bit of spice really sets smoked lobster apart. It’s not too overpowering at all, though you can always add more for extra heat.

    And if you don’t have chili paste, you can just sprinkle on some red pepper flakes or cayenne instead.
  • Butter – A bit of butter goes a long way with shellfish! Grab some salted butter and allow it to come to room temperature for easy melting.
lobster tails ready for the smoker

How to Smoke Lobster Tail

  1. Thaw before prepping

If you’ll be using frozen seafood, allow it to thaw in the fridge before cutting through the shell to prepare it.

Thawing can take a long time, around 24 hours — so plan ahead!

  1. Baste it often.

It’s worth it to be a bit more hands-on and regularly baste smoked seafood with butter. This makes the lobster tails more tender and keeps them from drying out.

They’ll be insanely juicy in the end! 

  1. Use the right wood pellets.

Fruit-flavored wood chips, such as apple or cherry, are often recommended when smoking seafood.

Since lobsters are naturally sweet, the two flavors meld together perfectly!

  1. Keep an eye on the temperature.

Preparing fish and shellfish is a bit of a delicate matter, though. Keep an eye on the temperature and be sure not to overcook it.

Otherwise, the smoked lobster will become tough and lose all of its flavor.

smoking lobster tails

Serving Suggestions

There are plenty of barbecue side dishes that go well with smoked lobster tail. My favorites are grilled asparagus, Southern potato salad, and pasta salads.

If you want to serve Traeger lobster tail for the holidays, you can’t go wrong with smoked baked potatoes!

Storing and Reheating Smoked Lobster

The safe zone for cooked seafood is 3 to 4 days in the fridge. Keep it fresh for as long as possible by storing smoked lobster tail in an airtight container.

Most importantly, don’t reheat it multiple times.

To reheat, slide the leftover smoked seafood (shell and all) into the oven at 350°F until warm.

You could also microwave, but be very careful and deliberate — 15 seconds or so at a time, checking to make sure it isn’t too hot. You really don’t want to overcook it!

close up: smoked lobster tails on cutting board

Traeger Lobster Tail FAQ

How long do you smoke lobster tail for?

It takes about 20 minutes to cook lobster tails on a pellet grill, once preheated to 275°F.

Can you put lobster tails on a smoker?

Yes! You can lay the shell directly onto the smoker.

But there is a bit of preparation involved: you need to loosen the meat and then place it back in the shell. 

What temperature should lobster tail be cooked to?

The meat should reach at least 140°F to be deemed safe for consumption. 
Overcooking can really ruin the lobster, so try not to cook it past that point.

Smoking allows for really gradual cooking, so you should be able to remove it from the heat at just the right time!

smoked lobster tails with lemon wedges on wooden board

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smoked lobster tail with lemon and parsley

Other Smoker Recipes

3 lobster tails on wood board

Smoked Lobster Tail

Donna Elick
Smoked Lobster Tail is a gourmet seafood dish with a smoky butter flavor. You can make this Traeger lobster tail recipe in just 40 minutes!
5 stars from 1 review
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Main
Cuisine American
Method Smoker
Servings 4


  • 4 lobster tails
  • 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon Italian flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon chili paste
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 black pepper


  • Preheat your smoker to 275°F.
  • With a pair of kitchen shears, cut down the center of the lobster tail shell, stopping just before the actual tail.
  • Using two hands, open the shell, while keeping it intact. Use a finger or a spoon to loosen the lobster meat inside, being careful to keep it in one piece. Set the meat on top of the lobster tail.
  • Add the melted butter, parsley, and spices to a bowl and whisk to combine. Pour the mixture evenly over the lobster tails.
  • Place the lobster tails directly on rack of preheated smoker and cook for 20 minutes.


Serving: 1 | Calories: 103cal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 11g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 604mg | Sugar: 1g | Fiber: 1g | Calcium: 59mg | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled image (and shown): smoked lobster tails close up

Originally Published July 2022, updated and republished July 2023

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One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    Lobster tail is one of my all time favorites, and smoked is the way to go! Would love to have this everyday!

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