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Maine-Style Lobster Roll

Bill Telepan's Maine-Stye Lobster Rolls, Connecticut-Style Lobster Rolls, Spicy-ish Coleslaw
Bill Telepan's Maine-Stye Lobster Rolls, Connecticut-Style Lobster Rolls, Spicy-ish ColeslawNathan Congleton / TODAY
Cook Time:
40 mins
Prep Time:
10 mins

Chef notes

This lobster roll reminds me of the very first one I ever tasted out on Long Island, New York. Ever since that moment, the Maine-style lobster roll has served as the benchmark for all other varieties I've encountered. There's something so perfect and comforting about the creamy lobster salad with the warm, lightly toasted bun.

Swap option: If you don't have time to make the lobster mayo, simply use regular mayo.


  • 4 1-pound lobsters or two 2-pound lobsters (4 pounds total needed)
  • Olive oil
  • Vinegar
  • Salt
Lobster oil
  • 2 cups vegetable oil
  • 2 roasted lobster bodies
Lobster mayo
  • 1 egg yolk, room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice, room temperature
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 ounces lobster oil (recipe above)
  • Water, as needed
To assemble
  • 1 pound cooked lobster meat, cut into medium chunks
  • 1 tablespoon minced celery
  • 2 tablespoons minced red onion
  • 4 tablespoons lobster mayo (recipe above)
  • 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon, chervil, parsley or chives
  • Salt
  • 4 hot dog buns, toasted in oven just before serving


For the lobster:


Bring a pot of water to a rolling boil. Add enough vinegar to flavor the water and salt to taste like the sea.


Let the water return to a rolling boil, then add the lobster tail and claws, reduce the heat to medium, and cook uncovered. Watch carefully and do not let the water come to a boil again. The pot should bubble occasionally, but not simmer.


Cook the lobster tail for 5 minutes and claws for 7 minutes. Remove from the liquid and cool.


Shell the tail, knuckles and claws.


Heat an oven to 450 F and split the lobster bodies with kitchen shears or a heavy knife.


Remove and discard the stomach sack about 1 inch behind the eyes and the tomalley (the light green part), if desired.


Put the bodies, claw and tail shells on a large rimmed baking sheet and toss with the olive oil. Arrange in a single layer and roast in the oven until the shells look slightly bleached and dry, about 20 minutes.

For the lobster oil:


Place the oil and roasted lobster bodies into a pot and bring to a simmer. Let the mixture cook very slowly for 1 hour on very low heat.


Turn the heat off and let the pan sit for 30 minutes.


Strain the lobster bits out of the oil, then cool the oil to room temperature.


Cover the oil and place in the fridge. It can last up to two weeks.

For the lobster mayo:


Whisk together the egg yolk, lemon juice, salt and pepper.


Whisk in the lobster oil a few drops at a time to form a thick emulsion. After about 2 ounces have been added (make sure the mayonnaise is still thick otherwise it has been broken and you'll need to start over), whisk the oil into the mixture in a thin stream until all of it has been incorporated.


Thin to the desired consistency with water.

To assemble:

Mix all the ingredients together in a mixing bowl.

Divide onto four buns and enjoy!