Chilled Lobster Tails with Green Goddess Aioli


Steamed lobster tails are served with an herb-packed mayonnaise-based dip in this chilled appetizer.

Chilled Lobster Tails with Green Goddess Aioli

Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Victoria Granof / Prop Styling by Karin Olsen

Active Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
35 mins

A vibrant green goddess–inspired dipping sauce is the perfect match for gently steamed, chilled lobster tails. You can steam them yourself as this recipe calls for, or you can buy them already cooked. Be sure to get Maine lobsters rather than warm-water Caribbean lobsters, as their textures and flavors are quite different. To make dipping easier, carefully remove the lobster meat from the shell and cut it into bite-size pieces, then return it to the shell for serving.  Finely chopped anchovies add a savory depth to the bright and herby dipping sauce. (You can store leftover anchovies in a small glass jar in refrigerator up to 1 month.) These make an elegant appetizer on their own, or can be combined with other seafood as part of an at-home seafood tower.


  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh parsley leaves

  • 1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves

  • 1 large scallion, chopped (about 3 tablespoons)

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)

  • 4 oil-packed anchovy fillets (from 1 [2-ounce] can) (see Note)

  • small garlic clove, finely grated (about 1 1/2 teaspoons)

  • Kosher salt, to taste

  • Black pepper, to taste

  • 6 (4- to 6-ounce) fresh Maine lobster tails, halved lengthwise


  1. Process mayonnaise, parsley, basil, scallion, lemon juice, anchovies, and garlic in a food processor or blender until smooth, about 1 minute and 30 seconds. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate aioli until well chilled, about 20 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, fill a large bowl with ice and water; set aside. Fill a large saucepan with water to a depth of 2 inches; place a steamer basket over saucepan, and bring water in saucepan to a boil over high. Add split lobster tails to steamer basket, flesh side up; cover and steam until lobster shells are bright red and meat is barely firm to the touch, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer lobster tails to ice bath using tongs, and let cool 5 minutes. Drain well.

  3. Working with 1 lobster tail at a time, carefully remove meat from shell; cut meat crosswise into 3 equal pieces. Arrange meat back in shell so it resembles the tail. Serve with aioli.

To Make Ahead

The green goddess aioli can be made up to 1 day in advance and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Thinned with a splash of buttermilk, any leftovers can also be transformed into the ultimate salad dressing.

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