Credit: Mary Carol Fitzgerald

9 Lobster Rolls in San Diego That Rival the East Coast

Sink Your Teeth Into These Deep-Sea Delights

What kind of lobster are you—rock lobster, Maine lobster or California spiny lobster? There’s probably an online quiz to find out, or you could do it the fun way—eating your way to the answer. Even the finest connoisseurs will agree: tasting the ocean’s most sought-after dish is best done wrapped in a freshly baked bun. We’re running through the best places in San Diego that prove it. A fisherman’s paradise at its core, this city’s specialty is seafood, and the restaurants that serve these crustaceans will have enthusiasts on cloud nine. No need to butter us up—we’re ready to dive into the divine with these nine amazing lobster rolls in San Diego.


Cody’s La Jolla

Best Lobster Rolls in San Diego
Credit: Mary Carol Fitzgerald

Cozy up at the coastal-chic Cody’s, where you can certainly cure your seafood cravings. Best known for their buzz-worthy brunch and lunch options, this breezy restaurant is a San Diego must-visit, whether you become a seasoned regular or a first-time visitor. Not only are the dishes to die for, but the coastal ambiance and ocean-view patio give Cody’s the iconic SoCal feel that every oceanfront establishment should! Situated above La Jolla Cove, you’ll enjoy ocean views and brunch options from any seat, along with boozy cocktails, beer, wine and coffee selections.

If you’re in the mood for lunch, the lobster roll is a foodie fantasy come true: 7 oz. of Maine lobster topped with lemon aioli, stuffed in a buttered and griddled brioche roll from the beloved Bread & Cie bakery in Hillcrest. Served with a side of housemade coleslaw and hand-cut french fries, this roll is nothing short of spectacular. It’s only fitting that a seaside eatery houses the finest seafood—sea for yourself why they’re constantly earning rave reviews among locals for 25 years!

Location: La Jolla


Lobster West

Best Lobster Rolls in San Diego
Credit: Lobster West

There’s something magical about a menu that gives you creative license, and we can’t imagine a more satisfying way than with variations on specialty seafood rolls. At Lobster West, the first step is to choose a roll—think classic lobster, lobster grilled cheese or an epic double meat affair. The next step is to add sides like baked beans or coleslaw, then, per order of the chef, the final step is to eat, drink and repeat. For those who can’t decide which roll to choose, go for the Junior Roll Samplers, which encourage dueling-claw cameos from lobster, crab and more. 

Locations: Coronado, Encinitas, La Jolla


Ironside Fish & Oyster

Best Lobster Rolls in San Diego
Credit: Jim Sullivan

If we’re taking sides, it’s always going to be Ironside. Introduced to Little Italy’s utopia of restaurants in 2014, Ironside was created in the spirit of what the area was built on: the fishing industry. They quickly became the neighborhood go-to for seafood, most known and loved for their $1 oyster happy hour. We, of course, suggest leaning into their lobster roll. It’s a carefully crafted combination of lobster covered in brown butter mayo, topped with crispy shallots and chives. Reserve a table or pop in any time to get the finest, freshest seafood at their expansive raw bar, chef’s table and bakery.

Location: Little Italy



Wicked Maine Lobster

Wicked delicious and wicked high-quality: at Wicked Maine Lobster, it goes without saying that you’re in for a wicked dining experience. Head down to Liberty Station for a taste, located in the adorable food hall, Liberty Public Market. Choose your own adventure: get the lobster roll warmed with melted butter or chilled with mayo, both in a toasted buttery bun with a side of crispy fries, pineapple slaw and a drink. They even have a California lobster roll, built with bacon, lettuce, tomato and avocado, and topped with homemade garlic aioli. Take it outside and chill on the patio, or indulge as you stroll among their neighboring vendors!

Location: Point Loma


Pete’s Seafood

When it comes to Pete’s, it’s hard to compete. Serving seafood plates, sandwiches, starters and salads on North Park’s happening 30th street, this casual neighborhood gem swiftly delivers a mouth-watering seafood experience every time. The notable difference in their menu is the Boston influence—something they’re determined to detail in every dish. In fact, they have lobster, fish and even flour flown in multiple times per week to bring the fresh New England taste to San Diego. Their Maine lobster roll is simple yet decadent: it starts with chilled shellfish on a grilled New England-style roll and is finished with just a touch of mayo to bring it all together.

Location: North Park


Captain Jack’s Shellfish Co.

Shellfishly, we almost kept this one a secret. Catch Captain Jack’s Shellfish Co. at your nearest farmer’s market, whether you’re passing through Little Italy, Hillcrest, Ocean Beach or Oceanside. Get in the mood for seafood with one of their fresh or grilled oysters, then move on to the main course—you guessed it, the lobster roll. Perfectly packed to the brim, their roll is stuffed with seasoned fresh lobster, topped with melted butter and served with a side of lemon. In our humble San Diego opinion, there’s no farmer’s market stroll complete without a touch of the bay.

Location: Little Italy, Hillcrest


SuperNatural Sandwiches

Credit: SuperNatural Sandwiches

They got it right—there really is something supernatural about these sandwiches. Sandwiches of the sea, to be more specific. SuperNatural Sandwiches provides out-of-this-world bite bundles to satisfy every earthly being, and they use sustainably sourced ingredients, freshly baked local bread and housemade sauces. With an eye for detail, they’ve been dubbed the best of San Diego many times. Their goal: to make seafood as approachable as a hamburger. The lobster roll—made with fresh garlic and packed to the top—is not to be missed!

Location: Miramar


Surf & Soul Spot

Credit: Sarajevo Petty

What is a lobster roll without a little soul? Find hearty seafood at Surf & Soul Spot, a local gem that celebrates Black culture with a SoCal flair. Their menu combines San Diego’s seafood staples with hearty, homestyle dishes of the South. In fact, they change it up by the day, featuring a surf-inspired menu Monday through Wednesday and a southern-focused soul menu Friday and Saturday. Stop by during their surf menu to experience the Seafood Lobster Roll: a grilled brioche bun stuffed with lobster and crab salad, then seasoned with lemon and melted butter. We have a strong feeling you’ll be back to try their weekend soul menu!

Location: El Cajon


Rockin’ Baja Lobster

Though not served alongside a guitar serenade, Rockin’ Baja Lobster’s lobster roll will no doubt have you singing. As you might’ve gleaned, lobster is their specialty—and there are few better places to experience a lobster roll than at one of their locations. Inspired by the seafood of Puerto Nuevo, Mexico, the owners bring a beloved south-of-the-border style menu to San Diego. Nevertheless, they stay true to the classic: the roll is served with Maine lobster meat, poached in butter and stuffed in a grilled New England-style bun. There is no truer coastal delicacy.

Locations: Old Town, Oceanside, Gaslamp Quarter

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Jaclyn is a sunshine chasing San Diego native with an extensive writing background. When she isn’t word-smithing, you can find her playing beach volleyball, skating the boardwalk, or on a rooftop enjoying a drink in the sunshine with her pals.




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