If you’ve never visited New Orleans and had a po’ boy sandwich, do yourself a favor and get there soon. Or, save yourself a flight and make this Lobster Po’ Boy recipe at home!
It’s got crispy, juicy chunks of fresh lobster meat nestled in soft French bread, drizzled with a spicy Creole remoulade sauce and topped with all the classic fixins’. You’re going to need two hands for this one!
I’ve traveled to many great food cities, but the food I ate off food trucks at Jazz Fest in New Orleans will forever hold first place in my mind. The food in New Orleans – even the kind you have to walk around eating with a plastic fork – is the best food in the world!
And I’ll never forget the first time I had a real po’ boy sandwich. Nothing short of amazing.
So, since it’s summer and since we’re feeling fancy, we’re going to use lobster to make this mouthwatering sandwich. Let’s get into it!
What is a Po’ Boy?
When it comes to iconic sandwiches, few can rival the soulful and flavorful experience of a po’ boy. Originating in Louisiana, The name “Po’ Boy” is believed to have originated in the late 1920s during a streetcar strike.
Bennie and Clovis Martin, former streetcar conductors turned restaurant owners, sympathized with the strikers and offered free sandwiches to those on strike. Whenever they saw the strikers coming, they would say, “Here comes another poor boy,” and the name stuck.
This classic sub-style sandwich typically features fried seafood like shrimp, oysters or catfish. Variations include lobster, like the one we’re making in today’s recipe, but all po’ boy sandwiches have one thing in common – the tangy Creole remoulade sauce.
Ingredients for this Lobster Po’ Boy Recipe
For the sandwich
- Lobster tail meat. You won’t need live lobsters or any claw meat for this sandwich recipe. All you’ll need is the tails, and frozen ones are fine. Frozen lobster tails will be a little less expensive than fresh lobster.
- French bread. A loaf of French bread that’s soft on the inside and has a slight crust on the outside is ideal. A French baguette will be a little small, but if it’s all you can find, it’s okay. Another good substitute is a loaf of Italian bread.
- Buttermilk. We’ll use this to brine the lobster meat before frying.
- All-purpose flour
- Iceberg lettuce
- Dill pickles
For the remoulade
- Creole mustard. This is basically whole grain mustard with a kick of horseradish and a hint of sweetness from paprika or brown sugar. If you can’t find it, just use whole grain or spicy brown mustard.
- Creole seasoning. This is the dry stuff, a delightful blend of spices that you’ll find many uses for.
- Lemon juice
- Hot sauce
- Dill pickles
How to Make a Lobster Po’ Boy
First things first, we need to deshell the lobster. Don’t panic, it’s so easy!
How to Deshell Lobster Tail
Place the lobster tail on its back.
Using kitchen shears, cut it up the middle until you can spread the two sides apart.
Then, just run your thumb between the meat and the shell until the meat comes loose.
Fry the Lobster
Assemble the Sandwich
Slather a good amount of remoulade onto the bread and load it up with the lobster bites, shredded lettuce and pickles.
How to Serve a Lobster Po’ Boy
For a true New Orleans experience, pair the Lobster Po’ Boy with a side of crispy French fries, sweet potato fries or traditional potato chips. While you’re at it, grab a classic cold bev like iced tea, lemonade, or – my preference – an ice-cold beer.
What kind of bread to use for a Po’ Boy Sandwich
Traditionally, a Po’ Boy is made with a French baguette or French bread, which should be soft on the inside with a slightly crisp crust. This allows the bread to hold up well to the rich and saucy fillings, while still offering a satisfying chew.
However, you’ll sometimes see a softer sub roll or hoagie bun, which provides a pillowy-soft texture that complements the tender lobster meat.
It’s important to strike a balance between a bread that can handle the filling without becoming too dense or overpowering the delicate flavors of the lobster.
Variations on this Lobster Po’ Boy Recipe
While the traditional Lobster Po’ Boy typically features fried lobster, here are some other creative twists to explore:
- For a lighter option, try using grilled lobster, which allows the natural sweetness of the meat to shine without the extra grease.
- Make a lobster salad po’ boy which combines lobster meat with a light dressing and crunchy vegetables.
- Play with flavor variations, like adding Asian-inspired slaw or infusing the lobster with Cajun spices.
Lobster Po’ Boy vs. Lobster Roll
A Louisiana lobster po’ boy and a Maine lobster roll are not the same thing! A few key differences:
1. The lobster meat. In a po’ boy, the lobster is traditionally breaded in a cornmeal batter and fried, while New England lobster rolls have chilled lobster meat that’s mixed with a small amount of mayonnaise, sometimes with a touch of lemon juice, celery and seasoning.
2. The bread. While a po’ boy is traditionally served on a French baguette or French bread, a lobster roll is typically served on a soft, lightly toasted split-top bun that’s brushed with melted butter. The buns are more similar to hot dog buns in shape and texture.
3. The toppings. Po’ boys can be dressed with lettuce, tomato, pickles, and remoulade. But the best lobster rolls are typically simple, with the focus on the sweet lobster meat. They can be served plain or garnished with a sprinkle of chives or green onion and a squeeze of lemon juice.
When you make this lobster po’ boy recipe, I’d love to hear about it! Drop a rating or leave a comment below. Enjoy!
For more sandwich recipes, try these:
- Chicken Cutlet Sandwich Recipe (Italian Style)
- Chipotle Chicken Melt with Avocado
- Heirloom Tomato BLTs with Roasted Garlic Mayo
For more shellfish recipes, try these:
- Crab & Corn Pasta with Sherry Cream Sauce
- Homemade Crab Cakes (Steakhouse Style)
- Creamy Shrimp & Avocado Salad (Low Carb)
The Best Lobster Po Boy Recipe (New Orleans Style)
- 1 1/2 lbs. lobster tail meat
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup cornmeal
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 loaf French bread
- vegetable oil for frying
- shredded iceberg lettuce
- dill pickles
- 1 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup dill pickles diced
- 2 Tbsp. Creole mustard
- 2 Tbsp. ketchup
- 1 Tbsp. Creole seasoning
- 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. hot sauce
- 1 clove garlic minced
- Deshell the lobster tails: Place each lobster tail, shell side down, on a cutting board. Cut down the middle using kitchen shears.
- Spread the tail open so that there are two halves. Run your thumb between the shell and meat to separate them and remove the meat.
- Cut the lobster meat into bite sized pieces. Place it into a bowl and pour buttermilk over it. Cover and chill for 30 minutes.
- Heat 1/2 inch of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Combine the flour and cornmeal in a separate bowl.
- Dredge each piece of lobster in the cornmeal mixture and then drop into the hot oil. Fry until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon onto a paper towel-lined plate or wire rack.
- Make the remoulade: Dice the pickles finely and combine with the remaining ingredients in a small bowl.
- Assemble the sandwiches: Spread generous amounts of remoulade on both halves of bread. Place the lobster onto the bread, followed by shredded iceberg lettuce and dill pickles.