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How to make an authentic New England Lobster Roll!

New England Lobster Roll - A Family Feast

Eating lobster is usually a luxury for us – reserved for special occasions or a special and delicious treat!  But thanks to a glut of Maine lobsters this summer – prices at the market for lobster here in New England are at record lows. So we’ve been eating (and thoroughly enjoying) this delicious seafood quite a bit!

A classic meal here in New England is the Lobster Roll!  Although the original Maine lobster roll is simply cooked lobster meat and melted butter on a buttered and grilled hot dog roll, most restaurants make a New England lobster roll with a lobster salad made with a mayonnaise base.  Today’s recipe is our version of the classic New England lobster roll similar to those served in local area restaurants.


New England Lobster Roll - A Family Feast

How do you make a New England Lobster Roll?

The trick to making the perfect New England lobster roll is to keep it simple.  The flavor of lobster is so delicious and so unique, that you don’t want to over-complicate the recipe too much with flavors that will overwhelm your lobster salad.

Just a touch of mayonnaise and lemon juice along with some finely chopped celery, parsley and scallion are the perfect complement to the fresh lobster meat.  My husband Jack also adds a touch of hot sauce (we used sriracha) which brightens up the flavors of our New England lobster roll, but adding it is optional.


To make a truly classic New England lobster roll, split-top hot dog rolls are the time-honored choice for the bread.  The split-top hot dog rolls are baked together so that when they are pulled apart, there is no outer crust on the sides of the roll.  New Englad Lobster Roll - A Family Feast

Around New England, split-top rolls are easy to find, but if you can’t find them in your area, any side-cut hot dog roll will work just as well.

Served with sliced fruit or coleslaw – these New England lobster rolls are a classic taste of New England!

You might like these other Lobster recipes:

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New England Lobster Roll - A Family Feast

New England Lobster Roll

  • Prep Time: 10 mins
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 2-4 servings


If you are using live lobsters that you will cook yourself, the yield is about 25%. So for four pounds of live lobsters, you will end up with one pound of cooked meat (give or take a few ounces depending on the size of the lobsters. The smaller the lobster, the lower the yield). Prep time below does not include cooking time for lobster. Cooking times for live lobsters can be found here.


  • 1 pound cooked lobster meat cut into bite sized chunks
  • 1/3 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup finely chopped celery (use tender inner stalks)
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons green tops from a scallion, minced fine
  • 1 dash hot sauce (we like Cholula)
  • Pinch is salt
  • Few grinds freshly ground black pepper
  • Split-top hot dog rolls
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • Optional – lettuce for serving.


  1. Place the cooked lobster meat in large bowl.
  2. In a separate, smaller bowl combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice, celery, parsley, scallion, hot sauce, and salt and pepper. Mix and taste for seasoning. Once you have the seasoning to your liking, add to the cooked lobster meat and mix.
  3. Brush both sides of rolls with butter and toast both sides in a medium fry pan over medium heat until nicely browned.
  4. Divide the lobster salad between each roll per your preference. Some serve lettuce under the lobster salad but we like it without, your choice.


New England Lobster Roll New England Lobster Roll


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  • Chaselogic wrote:

    What type of parsley Italian flat leaf or the herb curly one? I’m gonna make this fosh in a couple of days. Thanks!

    • Martha wrote:

      We always recommend cooking with Italian flat leaf parsley – save the curly stuff for garnishing your plate! 🙂

  • Virginia wrote:

    Delicious recipe!! I also added a teaspoon of fresh dill!! My family raved !!Thanks!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re welcome Virginia – glad you enjoyed the recipe!

  • Josh Simmons wrote:

    I am not a great cook but did this it was easy and AMAZING! Boiled 3 lobster tails while I cut the ingredients up and total start to finish was about 15 minutes.

    • Jack wrote:

      You must be better than you thought Josh. Glad it worked out for you.

  • Victoria wrote:

    Absolutely delicious. Simple recipe that allows the lobster meat to shine, as it should!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Victoria!

  • Fran Brunetti wrote:

    Can this wonderful recipe be prepared 24 hours ahead?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Fran – I’d say no more than a day ahead as long as the lobster meat is well-chilled. But freshly cooked lobster is always the best!

  • Herb wrote:

    Can the lobster salad be made a day ahead or is it better to make and enjoy the same day?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Herb – I’d say no more than a day ahead as long as the lobster meat is well-chilled. But freshly cooked lobster is always the best!

  • Bonnie wrote:

    The recipe never says how many rolls you get from the pound of lobster meat. I’m from Boston but have never made them myself but we like them loaded. So would a pound of lobster fill 2 rolls?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Bonnie – We list 2-4 servings at the top of the recipe card. So – if you like the hot dog rolls loaded, it will definitely fill two.

  • Mandee wrote:

    I bought the lobster from costco and used french sandwich rolls, I followed the recipe and added some fresh cilantro and wow it was AMAZING my hubby had 4 of them in one sitting. I have been bragging about these lobster rolls and shared your recipe.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Mandee!

  • James Firlik wrote:

    I made this recipe last week we enjoyed it immensely was wondering if you have ever substituted crab meat for the lobster? Thank you

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi James – Yes – This recipe would definitely work for a similar amount of crab meat.

  • Terri L White wrote:

    I too like a bit of zing but in place of hot sauce I use 2 tbs finely chopped radish.

    • Martha wrote:

      Great option Terri – thanks for the suggestion!

  • Caron Faherty wrote:

    I make this or very close version. I don’t put scallion in…use celery leaves instead. I find anything that taste at all like onion takes away from the sweet lobsta! And I used to live in Gloucester..

    • Martha wrote:

      Sounds delicious Caron – agree – you don’t need much seasonings and other flavors to make fresh lobster taste great!

  • Frequent New England Traveller wrote:

    If you’re in Maine, it only costs $13-$14 for a lobster roll that is stuffed so very well worth it rather making your own.

  • Nadine wrote:

    Hello, how do you cook you lobster for sandwiches? I’m just using tails. Thanks

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Nadine – If you are just cooking lobster tails for the meat to be used in a lobster roll, I’d suggest steaming them. You’ll want to put a steamer basket in the bottom of a wide pan (big enough that the tails will be in a single layer) and fill the bottom of the pan with about an inch of water or so. Then place the tails on the steamer basket shell size down (ideally the tails will be just above the water line). Cover the pot, boil the water and steam for 7-10 minutes depending on the size of the tails.

  • Patrizia wrote:

    I have made these lobster rolls a few times, it’s simplicity is what makes it so delicious. Looking forward to trying some of your other lobster recipes

    • Martha wrote:

      So glad you enjoyed the recipe Patrizia! We agree – with an ingredient like lobster – keep it simple so the lobster shines!

  • Sharon Hilker wrote:

    Love lobster rolls

    • Martha wrote:

      We do too Sharon! Hope you enjoy the recipe!

  • Roz wrote:

    Approximately how many medium lobster tails do I buy to get 1 lb of meat?
    Will that make 4 – 6 rolls?

    • Jack wrote:

      Hi Roz, this is Jack. “medium” is a relative term in regards to weight. Is medium 4-ounces, 6-ounces, 8-ounces? For 16 ounces, (1 pound), of lobster tail meat, you would need four 4-ounce tails assuming they are already shelled. If they are still in the shell, it is probably closer to 3 ounces of meat in which case you would need 5 or 6. Sorry to make this response sound so complicated but a pound is a pound the world around, and in your case, the amount of tails needed depends on their size.
      Simple answer…You probably will need between three and five average sizes shell-on tails.

  • Elaine Tyre wrote:

    Can you buy lobster ready to eat and if so is it just as good?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Elaine – Yes! Some markets will steam the live lobsters for you as you wait. That would be just as good as cooking it yourself. If it’s precooked and refrigerated…I’d be a little nervous because you won’t know for sure how long it has been sitting there. Hope that helps!

  • Kim K wrote:

    Fabulous and simple! Don’t overdo the mayo, just use as little as possible. We shelled 2 one pound lobsters and it made 2 nice sandwiches. Definitely toast the rolls! So delicious!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thank Kim!

  • Kayla wrote:

    Hi! Just wondering if you would suggest buying and boiling fresh lobster tails rather than picking up a frozen option?

    • Martha wrote:

      Hi Kayla – Yes, definitely. There is no comparison to freshly cooked lobster! BTW – some fish markets will boil the lobsters for you so if you’ve been buying frozen for the convenience, definitely ask around – this could be another option for you! You’ll still need to pick the meat from the shells, but the flavor and texture is so much better!

  • Deborah Schuster wrote:

    As a native New Englander I was slightly skeptical of some of the non traditional ingredients but this was FABULOUS!!!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Deborah – So glad you liked it!

  • Dorris Potter wrote:

    Had absolutely wonderful Lobster Rolls in Bar Harbor

    • Martha wrote:

      Oh yes Dorris! Maine lobster is the best! 🙂

  • Tricia wrote:

    I made this tonight using frozen lobster from Costco. I used lime juice and cilantro since I had both fresh. I couldn’t find the top cut buns so I bought soft buns and cut along top. They tasted amazing. I will definitely make these again!

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks Tricia! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! (I didn’t know that Costco sells frozen lobster – thanks for the tip!)

  • MaryAnn Castka wrote:

    I’ve made this before tho not with Siracha. I might have to try that!

    • Martha wrote:

      Hope you like it MaryAnn! It adds touch of heat (not too spicy – unless you add a lot!). Enjoy!

  • Mary wrote:

    I just made this tonite w fresh parsley from the garden and a dash of franks hot sauce. My husband said best ever! High compliment considering not a real lobster fan. I am going to make every Sunday for the rest of the summer. Thanks!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Mary! (Lobster every Sunday for the rest of the summer is a great idea!)

  • Gia Tanopo wrote:

    I LOVE LOBSTER ROLL 😋 I just made this for dinner! I used split top Hawaiian hot dog buns, which was AWESOME! I found sriracha mayo at the market so I used that instead. Everyone loved it! Especially my oldest son, which I was surprised considering it had “veggies”…lol. He loved it so much, he had 2 servings ☺

    • Martha wrote:

      I love the idea of using srirach mayo Gia! Not traditionally ‘New England’ 😉 but still delicious! So glad the recipe was a hit (with everyone)!

  • Heidi Nordström wrote:

    Just made these last night for the third time! It’s so easy and absolutely delish! I made these for my guests at New Year’s and they were a huge hit! This is my hubby’s new favorite sandwhich! Thanks so much!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Heidi! So glad you are all enjoying the recipe.

  • Debbie E. wrote:

    The only issue I see is mentioning that side cut buns are a good substitute. I would rather order some top cut buns on line than use side cut. There is no comparison. I may just have to do that even for my hot dogs. The grilling on both sides makes all the difference.

    • Martha wrote:

      Thanks for your feedback Debbie!

  • Irma wrote:

    Living in smalltown Canada means no access to real .live lobster. However, every summer , we vacation in Cape Cod for a week in Dennisport. After trying lobster rolls at numerous restaurants over the years, I hit upon a little restaurant , the Wee Packet, that had the best. And it must be pretty close to your recipe. It’s now amazing to me how many times I had the lobster roll served in a regular split top bun, no grilling, no butter, just in a mayo dressing. The grilled, buttered bun really makes it, along with just a touch of mayo. Thanks for sharing,Martha. I can hardly wait to get to the Cape!

    • Martha wrote:

      You’re very welcome Irma! Dennisport isn’t that far from us and my husband Jack has spent quite a lot of time there – although he hasn’t been to the Wee Packet. We’ll have to check out their lobster roll ourselves! Summer will be here soon…thanks for writing to us today!

  • Chef Stuart wrote:

    Tarragon and lobster are the perfect pairing so I would add a little bit of it.

    • Martha Pesa wrote:

      Thanks for the suggestion Chef Stuart!

  • Sharon wrote:

    Saw this on Pinterest and it looked fabulous! Definitely pinning so that I can try this whenever I get the lobster meat. I’ve seen these roll in Trader Joe’s. Bought them once and liked them with hotdogs and chili.

    • Martha Pesa wrote:

      Thanks Sharon!

  • tanya wrote:

    I have always wanted to make a lobster roll at home! This would be the perfect recipe to try! So simple and looks amazing.

    • Martha Pesa wrote:

      Thanks Tanya!

  • Meghan @ The Tasty Fork wrote:

    I love lobster rolls! I can’t wait to go to Boston over Thanksgiving and get an authentic lobster roll. I’m sure using fresh New England Lobster makes a HUGE difference!!

    • Martha Pesa wrote:

      Thanks Meghan! I’d say it’s a must-try when you are in Boston!

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