Lobsters Online is the delivery service for The Lobster Trap on Cape Cod. Founded as a neighborhood fish market in 1972, it's still owned by the same family. The restaurant now supplies grocery chains like Stop & Shop, as well as restaurants—including its own. Not only does that say a lot about the quality of its seafood, that means the company is constantly turning over its product. Nothing here sticks around for more than two or three days, ensuring freshness for every lobster purchased.
The website goes into great detail about where and how they harvest and process their lobsters, so you can get the most information about where your food is coming from. The company also sells lobster tails, lobster meat, chowder, clams, mussels, oysters, calamari, caviar, and scallops.
Shipping is overnight via UPS and it costs about $29 if you're shipping to the East Coast, and $44 to the West Coast. There's a $100 minimum to order, and the cost for two 1.5-pound lobsters is about $42.
Based in Massachusetts and in business since 1999, LobsterAnywhere offers live lobsters, as well as tails and meat, full-on surf-and-turf lobster dinners, plus a host of other seafood such as shrimp and scallops.
As a nice touch, you can check out the shipping charges on a chart before you buy, whereas most companies make you add your contact information first. Typically, the shipping cost is between $29 to $79 depending on the size of the order, although some items are specially priced with free shipping, making for a pretty good deal. One of these deals, the Lobster Roll Kit, serves eight people for $168, which is about $20 a roll to have them delivered to your door–around what you’d pay at a restaurant. For a pair of 1.5-pound lobsters, the price is around $56.
If you’re a big seafood lover, you can take advantage of LobsterAnywhere’s rewards program. For every dollar you spend, you’ll get 100 “sand dollars,” which you can redeem at checkout for a discount.
Captain Tim, the eponymous LobsterGuy, owns a fleet of boats and his team of skippers and deckhands works hard to bring fresh, succulent Maine lobster to you. The LobsterGuy may even be familiar to you since Captain Tim has been featured on Discovery Channel’s Lobstermen.
The company doesn't use a middleman to source or buy lobsters from, so the prices are great and you can check the shipping charges before entering your contact information. Shipping is always overnight via FedEx and is determined by the weight of the package and the zip code of its destination.
The price for lobster ends up being around $20 per pound, although you can buy it in a wide range of weights from tiny to jumbo, and you can purchase them already steamed. The store also offers a selection of seafood from other fishermen in Captain Tim’s network, including scallops, clams, and shrimp. There are also kits for lobster rolls or clam bakes, and ready-made chowders and bisques.
Luke’s Lobster started as a restaurant in New York’s East Village in 2009. Since then it’s grown into a chain of over 30 restaurants located around the U.S. and Japan. The chain now operates an online seafood market and prepares frozen lobster products sold in supermarkets such as Whole Foods.
But even though it’s now a bigger brand, Luke’s Lobster hasn’t lost its indie spirit. Not only is it certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council, but it’s also a Certified B Corporation committed to giving back to its community and the environment through contributions and partnership with The Ocean Foundation. The company says it can trace every pound of seafood back to which harbor it came from.
You’d think with this much name recognition, Luke’s Lobster would charge astronomical prices. Instead, they offer reasonable prices. Lobsters average out to $50 each for 1.25- to 1.5-pounders, and shipping is free via UPS next-day.
Throwing a party? Get Maine Lobster has you covered with its “Buy One Get One” bulk deals. Though most of the company's offers are for orders of six or more lobster tails, the company offers great prices on larger orders of live lobsters too. If you order five culls—lobsters that have lost an appendage—you can get five free for $185 and free shipping. That’s just $18 a lobster. Or, you can order four pristine live lobsters up to 1.2 pounds each in size and get two free, plus free shipping, and those lobsters will cost around $30 each.
There’s not a big selection in terms of the size of the lobsters, as all are around 1.2 to 1.5 pounds. But insiders will tell you that smaller lobsters are younger and sweeter anyway. The company also offers lobster roll kits, beef wellingtons, and crab claws.
In business since 2010, the company sources all of its lobster from Maine and has a long roster of local Portland, Maine, charities it supports, including the National Breast Cancer Foundation and an assistance program for veterans.
Shipping is via UPS overnight, 2nd day, or ground and is calculated when you check out. Expect to spend between $25 and $55, depending on its destination.
Launched in 2012 by the tech-savvy son of a longtime lobster wholesaler, Maine Lobster now has perhaps the most well-designed website in the lobster shipping business. Being able to easily and clearly navigate around the site makes shopping a pleasure.
The selection includes live lobsters in a wide range of sizes, which are purchased directly from the lobstermen and kept in saltwater tanks until they're packaged for delivery. There are also lobster tails, lobster meat, and other seafood like crab and scallops. You can round out your order with everyday items such as chicken breasts and ground beef, or gourmet goods such as lobster pot pie, mac and cheese, bisques, chowders, and blueberry pie for dessert.
One of the best parts is not having to wonder about shipping charges because the company offers free shipping on orders of $100 or more—which is not a difficult mark to hit when you’re buying lobster. Lobsters here will run you around $25 for a 1.5-pounder. Even if you don’t order $100 worth, shipping can be calculated before checking out. All orders have an additional $10 for packaging. There is also a small fee for shipping protection, although you can opt-out of this.
Chicago-based Lobster Gram has been around since 1987 and sources its live lobsters direct from Maine, where it has an 18,000-square-foot distribution center. It also gets lobster tails from other cold-water fisheries in New Zealand, South Africa, Tristan da Cunha, and North Australia.
There’s no sense surprising a loved one with a delivery of live lobsters if they don’t have the tools and know-how to cook them. Luckily, Lobster Gram covers all the bases by offering kits that include shell crackers, seafood forks, and even butter and lemon. The website is loaded with instructional videos for cooking and serving lobster.
The company offers a wide range of other foods, including steaks and desserts, so you can order a multi-course lobster dinner for just one person. The meal includes it all: a 1-pound lobster, one crab cake, chowder, dessert, butter and lemon, crab cracker and fork, bib, and a moist towelette.
If you want to order just a few lobsters, two of them cost $105.
Shipping live lobsters requires overnight delivery, and there’s a handy chart so you can determine your costs before giving up your contact information during checkout. For frozen products, you can opt for slightly more economical two-day shipping, although shipping on an average order will be about $46.
How Do Lobster Delivery Services Ship Live Lobsters?
Since the lobsters are live, companies generally use insulated shipping coolers with gel packs inside to keep the container cool. Shipping live lobsters requires overnight delivery. If a company ships frozen lobsters there’s often a less expensive shipping rate for two-day delivery.
What Are the Best Ways to Cook a Lobster?
The two most popular methods are steaming or boiling the lobster. Steaming is often the preferred method as it leaves the lobster meat more tender and less watery than if boiled. To steam: Add two inches of water to a pot large enough to hold the lobster. Add a rack, if desired. Bring the water to a boil. Add the lobster to the pot head first, cover tightly, then steam for 7 minutes for the first pound and 3 minutes for each additional pound. Boiling is the preferred method for cooking four or more lobsters. To boil: Fill a large pot with enough water to cover the lobsters by 3 inches once submerged. Add 2 tablespoons of salt for each quart of water. Bring to a boil. Add lobsters head first to boiling water. Cover tightly and boil for the required amount of time. Cooking time is based on the size of the lobsters and not the total weight of the lobsters. For example, if the pot contains 1-pound lobsters, boil for 5 to 7 minutes. For 1 1/4-pound lobsters, boil for 7 to 9 minutes.
How Soon Should I Cook the Lobster From a Lobster Delivery Service?
Most companies recommend cooking the lobster within 24 hours of delivery. Maine Lobster Now suggests cooking the lobster the same day it is received but you may store it overnight in the refrigerator along with the seaweed it is packed in to keep it moist. The company notes that fresh water will kill the live lobsters so don’t use fresh water to keep the lobsters moist during storage.
How Much Do Lobster Delivery Services Cost?
Prices vary. For example, Maine Lobster Now charges $15.99 per 1-pound lobster when purchasing a lot of 12 ($17.99 for 1) plus shipping. Luke’s Lobster offers free shipping and charges for 2, 4, or 6 lobsters from $110 to $145.
How We Chose the Best Lobster Delivery Services
Buying fresh, live Maine lobsters online is an investment, so we prioritized companies that protect this by shipping lobsters properly and offering refunds for any that arrive unusable. Keep in mind, every company has the same strict rules about refunds should anything happen, and you’d be wise to get familiar with them before ordering.
We also looked for companies that are transparent about their sourcing, so you know exactly where the lobster was harvested, not just where it was shipped from.
High marks went to websites that offered a clear, easy ordering process and responsive customer service. We also took into account customer reviews, selection, and pricing, with bonus points going to companies that don’t hide the high cost of shipping to hook their customers.
Customers should note that prices fluctuate depending on the season. The best prices are usually found in spring and fall, from April to early June, and September to November. The prices listed in this article are effective as of early May.