How to cook Alligator tail

How To Cook Alligator Tail- {Cajun Fried Gator tail recipe}

Trying alligator meat is not a joke and if you want to cook alligator meat then this tasty recipe on how to cook alligator tail is going to spice things up for you.

Alligator might not be the most common type of lean meat that you can cook even in the more eccentric options. 

However, it is not an uncommon food for Lousiana cuisine if you have tried it. There are a lot of alligator farms where you can order many pounds of Louisiana alligator meat like this one.

I have always wondered how to cook alligator tail dishes and this time I finally tried it!

If you are wondering how to cook alligator tail and want to get it right the first time, try this alligator tail recipe that explains in detail how to cook alligator tail.

It is quite hard to describe the taste of alligator aside from comparing it to chicken but cooking alligator tail is a different experience that you should experience at least once.

Alligator meat tastes like chicken or rabbit but it also has its unique flavors.

Whether you are trying out new recipes or just miss Louisiana cuisine, I think that there are not many options that can fulfill that craving more than home-cooked alligator tails.

You might be wondering why the tail and not the other parts of the alligator or perhaps the whole alligator.

The most tender meat of the alligator is the tenderloin found on the tail of the alligator and other cuts of meat.

The tail is divided into four sections and separated into cylindrical cuts. 

It is juicy and has a tender texture with hints of mild white meat like chicken and even more tender when you pound the alligator meat with a standard meat mallet or your favorite meat tenderizer. 

This is the perfect unique recipe for home cooks that you can cook in different ways the next time.

Cajun Fried Alligator Tail

Before we get to cooking alligator tail, let us see what you will need. There are some parts of the process that you will need to do to cook the alligator tail properly.

First, you will need some equipment and prep time for both the preparation part and the actual cooking process. Get a cutting board, glass bowl, sharp kitchen knife, and paper towels.

For the appliances and tools you will need to cook alligator tail, prepare your cast-iron kettle or deep fryer, tongs, and your serving platter once you are done cooking the alligator tail.


1 and a half pounds of alligator tenderloin/tail

3 cups of vegetable oil

2 and a half cups of flour

1 and a half cups of full-fat buttermilk

2 large eggs

2 tablespoons of cornstarch

1 and a half tablespoons of spicy mustard

1 tablespoon of hot sauce

2 and a half teaspoons of Cajun seasoning

1 and a half teaspoons of garlic powder

Half a teaspoon of onion powder


Step 1: Season The Alligator Tail

If you ordered the alligator tail from your butcher, then it should be prepared already.

Just cut the tenderloin from the tail and slice it into smaller pieces before putting them in a bowl.

Make sure to give the alligator tail a rinse and pat it dry with paper towels.

You can then soak alligator tail in buttermilk or milk for 2-3 hours to tenderize the meat and remove any swamp flavour.

This step is optional but I highly recommend you try this as it will make a huge difference in the way you cook alligator tail meat.

Cut them into chunks and then put them in a medium bowl before seasoning them with garlic and onion powder, cajun seasoning, and hot sauce.

Season gator meat by tossing the chunks in the bowl to coat it with the seasoning evenly.

Cover the bowl and let the alligator tail rest for 20 minutes at room temperature to allow the seasoning to sink deeper into the meat.

Step 2: Ready The Deep Fryer

The best way to cook the alligator tail chunks is by deep-frying them in a deep fryer.

If not, you can use a pan or a large cast-iron skillet and cook the alligator tail chunks on the stove.

Place the cast-iron skillet on the stove and turn it up to high heat. 

Pour all the vegetable oil or olive oil on the skillet and heat oil up to 350 degrees Fahrenheit before you fry the alligator tails.

I use a laser thermometer to measure the temperature of the hot oil. 

Still, you can use an instant-read thermometer to get a more accurate reading of the temperature of the vegetable oil.

Step 3: Prepare The Breading

Get a separate small bowl and then combine buttermilk, spicy mustard, and eggs.

In another bowl, mix the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, and about a pinch of the cajun seasoning that you have.

Get the seasoned alligator tail chunks and then toss each in the all-purpose flour mixture. 

Shake off the excess flour and then dip the alligator tail chunks in the buttermilk mixture, shake off the excess.

You will need a double coating so that the meat does not burn too quickly so repeat the breading process. Place the breaded alligator meat on a clean plate.

Step 4: Deep Fry The Alligator Tail

Once the oil temperature gets to the set temperature, use your tongs to drop the alligator chunks in the oil and allow them to cook in small batches.

Around four to five chunks will do as you need to be careful not to overcrowd the cast-iron skillet or the oil will start to splatter and go over the edge of the cast-iron skillet.

Use your tongs to turn the alligator tail chunks occasionally.

You need the breading to be golden brown and the meat cooks through which will take around 8 minutes.

Repeat the process with the remaining batches and then place the cooked alligator tail on your serving plate lined with paper towels. This will absorb the excess oil from the alligator tail.

Make sure that the temperature of the oil does not go too hot by turning the heat down to medium heat.

I do not recommend covering the skillet while cooking as the oil will overflow.


Once the alligator tail is cooked, you can serve it right away. 

Bring out your salad as a side dish and ketchup to dip the delicious golden brown alligator tail chunks and add plenty of delicious flavors to it.

You can also use BBQ sauce or any other favorite sauce that you like.

I love making gravy or sweet and spicy sauce with the alligator tail recipe as they compliment the mild flavors of the fried tail perfectly.

The fried alligator tail will surely satisfy your Louisiana cuisine craving with its authentic and unique flavor. You do not have to go to the local restaurants as you can now cook it yourself.

While it is not for regular meals, it is easy to cook so you can make it anytime you want.

Can You Get Sick From Eating Alligator?

I have to tell you that there are risks to eating alligators and other exotic types of meat from reptiles.

However, if the animal is raised right and is clean, these are not that big of risks.

You can get sick from eating meat from reptiles such as crocodiles, snakes, and turtles but rarely from alligators.

Plus, you can eliminate these risks if you cook the meat properly.

Most of the pathogenic bacteria found in meat, including reptile meat, can be eliminated by cooking the meat. 

Frying, grilling, or roasting the meat can remove these health risks.

So make sure to cook the alligator tail until the meat cooks through before eating it.

Soaking Alligator Meat

There are a lot of ways to cook it and you can find some on the texas cooperative extension alligator cookbook and most of them soak the meat.

It is best to soak alligator meat before you cook it. It is advisable to cook alligator meat for about 2-3 hours in milk or buttermilk.

This helps tenderize the alligator meat and remove any swamp taste that is in the meat. Many people love soaking alligator meat before cooking it as soaking alligator meat in milk gives it a better taste.

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