Cevapcici- A Traditional Bosnian Recipe

One of the things I love about food is its ability to transport you back to a place.  My husband insisted on making an authentic Slavic dish- Cevapcici.  When I tasted them, they seemed oddly familiar?  The flavors and the funny shape.  I had to go back through my photos, sure enough at a restaurant overlooking the Neretva River in Mostar, Bosnia – there they were on a plate.  Cevapcici. 

I can always get a little rise out of my husband when he says he’s cooking Cevapcici and I ecstatically say “ooooh meatballs!” but I think my preferred label for them are “hamburger fingers.”  Unlike burgers, they are shaped like little sausages and heavy on the paprika- a classic sign of Austrian- Hungarian influence.

Cevapcici is traditionally baked in the oven.  They are an excellent camping recipe cooked on a grid or in a pan, as you would, dare I say it…like meatballs.


  • 750 grams or 1.5 lbs. mince meat (traditionally a combination of beef, lamb, and pork), but you can always substitute vegan mince options
  • 1 egg
  • 4 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 onion minced
  • 3 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp mustard
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 C oats, bran, or flour for binding
  • 2 chilis minced
  • oil for the pan


  • mixing bowl
  • baking pan, frying pan, or grill grate


  1. Fold all ingredients except for the chilis together in bowl. Mix thoroughly.
  2. Fold chilis into mix carefully.
  3. Let rest for 30 minutes.
  4. Preheat oven 400°F /200°C.
  5. Portion mince mix and roll into “hamburger fingers.”
  6. Oil pan and bake for 10-15 minutes or cook on stove or grill until cooked through.
  7. Let rest for 5 minutes.
  8. Prijatno!

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