What are the Differences between Lobster Tails and Claws?

If you have ever eaten a lobster, you obviously know that the taste and texture of the claws and the tail are different. It is often a topic discussed at the table when guests come over for dinner, as different people enjoy more one part over the lobster more than the other. What are the differences between them and is there a better way to cook one or the other? That is what we will study in the article below.

Lobster: A Seafood Greatly Appreciated by Most

Those who love lobster are often addicted to it. There’s sweetness, to the lobster meat, which is quite unique, even compared to other seafood. It is often used in wedding banquets, as it is regarded as a high-end specialty, often preferred because its taste can please most people. Lobster can be quite expensive when it is imported, and even in countries where they live, but in high season, it is well worth the price. And because lobster’s cost varies according to its weight, you can find the right size lobster for most budgets.

A Taste that varies according to the Fishing Location

Real specialists will tell you that, for them, the most important difference is not between the tail and the claws, but where the lobster comes from. If you live in the Eastern region of Canada or in one of the U.S. North-eastern States, then you have had the chance to taste some of the best lobster in the world. If you have tasted both, you will also notice a difference. Of course, depending on where you live, you will probably root for the local one. But don’t let anyone tell you differently: Canadian lobster’s taste is sweeter and tenderer than its American cousins.

So: Lobster Claws or Lobster Tails?

If you are eating a lobster from warm water (also called rock lobster), then you won’t have any issues regarding which part is best to eat, since they don’t have claws. You can find them in the Caribbean Sea, where they can grow to be really big. Eating a rock lobster tail can be almost as sweet as eating lobster claws. But we are getting ahead of ourselves…

There is more to eat in a lobster then just the tail and the claws. However, they are the easiest and tastiest parts to eat. But some will pick the meat from the tiny legs, as well as whatever they find inside the body. When it comes to the preference between claws and tail, people will usually separate in two equal groups. The claws are sweeter and more tender than the tail. But those who prefer the tail will tell you that there is more substance to eat; almost like meat.

Other Reasons Why Someone could prefer the Tail instead of the Claws

A specialist’s opinion

Whenever you have a question to answer regarding opinions, it’s always best to ask a specialist; which is what we did. We spoke to someone in Maine, the “main” state for lobster in the U.S., who specializes in cooking these little beasts. The seriousness of the question surprised him, and he asked to be given time to think about it. When he came back with an answer, he said that although the taste of the claws was better according to him, he really didn’t care for the texture. Therefore, he thought that the tail offered more interest, in the end.

Cooking Methods

There is another reason that can be offered, which would explain why some people prefer the tail, and that has to do with the various methods of cooking it. The fact is, besides boiling or steaming the claws, it would be very difficult to cook them otherwise. That’s not the case with the tail. In restaurants, you will often find them broiled, grilled or baked. That enables a larger number of people to enjoy them, according to the way they like their food cooked.

Price/quantity ratio

If you’ve ever eaten a full lobster, you may remember the weight of the claws, when empty of food, compared to the weight of the tail, in the same condition. The second one is quite light, compared to the first ones. If you pay the parts by weight (which you usually do), it is much more beneficial to buy the tail, as you will be paying for meat more than the shell. With the claws, the reverse principle would apply. Not worth the loss…


It is a fact that a lobster has two claws and only one tail. Therefore, we might think at first glance that their availability is greater. However, that is not true, as many of the lobsters (as me mentioned in the beginning) do not have claws. They are rock lobsters, found in hot water. That can also justify that more people prefer the tail to the claws, simply because they don’t have access to the latter!

Mathilde P.

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