How to Make a Simple Lobster Stock for Bisque, Gumbo, Risotto, and Other Lobster Favorites

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Every good risotto, soup, or chowder stems from its stock, which serves as the base for the dish. You can sometimes turn to seasoned water in a pinch, but your final dish won’t taste as flavorful and genuine as it would if you incorporated stock.

That’s because stock uses real ingredients it’s based on, like chicken for chicken stock or vegetables for vegetable stock. Lobster stock is also a thing, breathing deep flavors from the sea into your lobster bisque, risotto, or seafood chowder. Yum!

Let’s learn more about creating you’ll-be-surprised-how-simple-it-is lobster stock to use in your future recipes. (Need some inspiration? We also wrote an article about how to make lobster bisque, and this stock would be perfect for it!).

How to Make Lobster Stock

The #1 rule for making a lobster stock? Don’t throw away those shells when you make anything with lobster! Any time you need to steam lobster for another dish, you can use all the extra stuff – yes, even the heads and legs – to make lobster stock to save for future use (we’ll talk about that in a moment).

Gather up your leftover lobster shells and let’s make some stock!

For a simple stock, you’ll need:

  • All the shell leftovers from your steamed lobster, including head, legs, and empty carapace (break them into 2 to 3-inch pieces)
  • 6-8 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 cup white wine
  • Enough water to fill the rest of the pot and cover the lobster carcasses completely

To make the stock:

  1. Add olive oil to the bottom of your stockpot and preheat to medium-high. Then, add lobster shells, celery, carrots, onion, thyme, garlic, and the bay leaf. Stir, and allow to sauté for 5 to 10 minutes until onions become somewhat tender.
  2. Turn the heat to low and add the wine and water to cover the lobster carcasses. Bring back to a boil, stir, and then turn to low again to simmer. Continue simmering until liquid reduces a few inches lower or about 2 hours.
  3. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly about 20 minutes. Pour stock through a strainer to remove all shells, herbs, and vegetables, saving only the broth.
  4. Allow cooling completely before storing it.

Saving Lobster Stock for Future Use

Lobster stock is one of those things that you can keep to use later, so you don’t need to feel like you have to use it right away. Save your shells, make a stock, and store it in the freezer to use whenever you feel like making a bisque, risotto, or another yummy lobster dish.

Your lobster stock can store in an airtight container or bag in the freezer for up to six months. If you’re going to use the stock within three days, you can also store it in the refrigerator.


This simple lobster stock is the perfect base for several lobsters, or other seafood, dishes and will elevate the flavor of your recipes more than traditional chicken or vegetable stocks. It’s the best way to infuse those fresh seafood flavors into your food.

Need some lobsters to go with your stock? Visit Maine Lobster House to order fresh Maine lobster online!