Lobster Casserole with a Crispy Buttery Topping is a classic way to prepare Maine lobster, especially on the East coast of the US. Grab this easy recipe and you'll have your own New England culinary adventure in no time!
If you're not familiar with Lazy Lobster, it's a seafood dish where lobster is dressed simply in a super-savory butter sauce, then topped with crispy, buttery crumbs and baked until just warmed through. It's lazy, because it gives the diner the chance to enjoy a spectacular lobster dinner without the hassle of cracking through shells and splattering juices across the curtains.
If you love lobster, but don't love the dry cleaning bills, this is the recipe for you! It's perfect for date night at home, special occasions and dinner parties. It's one of my favorite seafood recipes of all time, and I can't wait for you to try it.
Ingredients needed for Lazy Lobster Casserole Recipe:
Lobster meat: ideally, use one shelled whole lobster per person (this recipe feeds 2), including the lobster tail, claws and body meat. But this is a great recipe to use up leftover lobster meat, too. So if you have chunks of lobster leftover from your fresh lobster boil, grab what you have and start casserole-ing!
Butter: between the lobster filling and the crispy topping, we use a full stick of butter. Trust me, it's worth it. I prefer salted butter, but use what you have and taste and adjust salt levels in both the filling sauce and the topping.
Lemon: we use lemon zest in the crispy topping, fresh lemon juice in the buttery filling and we serve the casserole with lemon wedges. Lobster loves lemon!
Garlic + Shallot: just a few cloves of garlic and one shallot add an intensely savory flavor to the simple lobster butter sauce. Grating them adds all the flavor but doesn't get in the way texturally with our delicate lobster.
Sherry: the perfect flavor booster to pair with fresh Maine lobster meat. Substitute dry white wine, if needed.
Ritz crackers + cornflakes: seafood casseroles really must include a crispy topping. I love the tender, buttery richness of Ritz crackers, especially paired with the thin and crispy crunch of cornflakes. Substitute panko bread crumbs into the skillet once you melt butter, or add crushed oyster crackers to your bread crumb mixture.
Parsley, Salt, Pepper: we use simple seasonings that let the lobster shine. Taste both elements (crispy topping and buttery sauce) to ensure you have the proper seasoning level before baking.
Full ingredients and measurements included in the printable recipe card below.
Step by step instructions for lobster casserole recipe:
To begin, preheat oven to 325℉.
Begin building the lobster casserole by making the crunchy topping. Crush buttery crackers and corn flakes to a coarse crumb. Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add crushed crackers and cereal to the butter, along with fresh parsley, lemon zest and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to coat and brown the crumbs over medium low heat for 3-4 minutes. Taste and add additional salt and pepper, if desired. Set aside.
Next, make the filling. Heat 5 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add grated garlic and shallot, and cook for about 2 minutes. Add sherry and lemon juice and simmer for 2-3 more minutes. Taste the butter sauce and add salt and pepper to taste.
If you’re using raw lobster meat, add the meat (and any lobster juice included) to the butter sauce in the sauté pan and cook for about 2 minutes, just until the seafood begins to firm. If using already steamed lobster or leftover lobster meat, remove the butter sauce from the heat and place lobster into the pan and toss to coat in the sauce.
Divide your butter and lobster mixture among two ovenproof ramekins (or one medium casserole dish). Top with a healthy portion of the crispy topping. Bake in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes, until lobster is warmed through and topping is golden brown.
Serve with a fresh lemon wedge and enjoy.
FAQ's and Serving Suggestions:
Lobster casserole is a user-friendly lobster experience where you enjoy pure lobster flavor without the challenge of cracking through shells to get to the delicious meat. But if you're looking for a vegetable and seafood type of casserole for variety, add diced vegetables like celery or green pepper, grated parmesan cheese, herbs like tarragon or dill, or even another type of seafood such as shrimp or scallops to compliment the lobster.
Yes, you can assemble the casserole up to a day ahead and refrigerate it until you are ready to bake it. Just make sure to cover it well to prevent drying out. Adjust the baking time accordingly if baking from cold.
Lobster casserole can be served as a main course alongside a variety of side dishes. Some popular choices include Savory Coleslaw, Parmesan Truffle Fries, Lemon Dill Basmati Rice, Mediterranean Tossed Salad, or Garlic Baguette for mopping up the delicious sauce.
If using leftover lobster for your lobster casserole, it's best to consume all of the casserole the day you prepare it. If using fresh lobster, store any leftover casserole in an airtight container in your refrigerator for up to 2 days. To reheat, let the casserole sit at room temperature while the oven is preheating. Then bake gently at 325℉ for 10-12 minutes, or until the lobster is just heated through.