This twist on lobster rolls, with a sweet and spicy homemade jerk BBQ sauce combines two of my favorite parts of summer: lobster and outdoor barbecues. You get all the smoky, spicy flavor of BBQ with the light, delicate texture of lobster tails. And don't forget the fluffy brioche bun to hold everything together!
This recipe is also a nod to my Jamaican roots. I love cooking with jerk spice, and if you do to, then be sure to try my Crispy Baked Jerk Potato Wedges on the side with your lobster rolls!
How to Make Lobster Rolls with BBQ Jerk Sauce
If you haven't made your own lobster rolls before, don't be intimidated. It's easy to make this signature sandwich at home, and so much cheaper than buying one at a fancy seafood restaurant.
What is the Best Lobster for Homemade Lobster Rolls?
I use lobster tail meat for my jerk lobster rolls. They're easy to find at most seafood stores and cook up quickly. Plus, there are no live and kicking lobsters to deal with at home.
The tail meat is also easy to access with no special lobster crackers or other tools.
To open your lobster tails:
Place the tail on a cutting board.
Use a large, sharp knife to make a slit in the top of the tail from the end to end the long way.
Now, you can pull out the meat so it sits on top of the tail without entirely detaching the shell.
Homemade BBQ Jerk Sauce for Lobster Rolls
If you have a well-stocked spice cabinet, chances are you have everything you need to make homemade jerk seasoning for these rolls.
You can also make your own BBQ sauce or use your favorite store-bought brand.
Jerk Seasoning Ingredients
Here's what you need to make a signature Jamaican-style jerk seasoning:
onion and garlic powder for a base of allium flavor.
Cayenne, paprika, red pepper flakes for the spice.
Thyme and parsley for some fresh, herby notes.
Allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and cumin for warmth.
Brown sugar for sweetness.
To infuse the lobster meat with plenty of Jamaican flavor, I like to cook the tails in a cast-iron skillet with jerk butter.
Then, I cook the sauce to build deep flavors. And finally, dice up the meat, coat it in the sauce, and I'm ready to serve!
Serving Lobster Rolls with BBQ Jerk Sauce
I recommend serving your lobster rolls in fluffy brioche buns. They're rich enough to hold up to the smoky, sweet and spicy Jerk sauce. Or, to make gluten-free lobster rolls, simply use your favorite gluten-free hot dog rolls.
Toast the buns for extra crunch, then fill them to the brim with your jerk lobster. For toppings, I like the fresh sweetness of pineapple and a sprinkle of dried parsley.
For a different tropical topping, try fresh mango, or a tropical salsa.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly grease a 10-inch or 12-inch oven-safe skillet.
In a small bowl, add 2 Tbsps of melted butter and 1 teaspoon of jerk seasoning together and mix until combined. Set aside.
To prep lobster tails, slightly crack shell and remove most of lobster meat outside of shell without completely detaching shell from meat. **NOTE: This allows the lobster meat to fully cook through with shell blocking it.**
Add lobster tails to prepped skillet and generously brush tops of lobster meat with jerk-butter mixture and bake everything for 15-20 minutes or so.
In the meantime, make your BBQ Jerk sauce by adding all ingredients to a small saucepan over medium-high heat and letting it bubble for 2-3 minutes before removing from heat.
Once lobsters are cooked through, remove from oven and let cool slightly before removing the meat entirely from the shells and cutting them into medium-sized chunks. Add chunks to the pot with the warm BBQ Jerk sauce and stir together until lobster meat is fully coated.
In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, add brioche buns (open slightly) faced down until lightly toasted on both sides. Once toasted, add to a platter or serving plate, top with a few spoonfuls of coated lobster meat and top with pineapple chunks and dried parsley. Repeat until all buns are topped.
Tips & Tricks
STORAGE: Place any leftover lobster meat in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.