Bosnian Cevapi – the National Dish of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnian Cevapi

If you’re looking for a delicious and hearty grilled dish, look no further than Bosnian cevapi. This dish is made with minced beef and lamb and is often served with onions, ajvar sauce, and bread. Ćevapi is a popular dish in Bosnia and has origins in the Balkans during Ottoman rule. If you’re looking for a tasty and unique regional specialty, be sure to try Bosnian ćevapi! You won’t be disappointed!


This dish is made of minced meat and is a popular grilled dish in Bosnia. Ćevapi can be made with beef and lamb and is often served with onions, ajvar (a roasted red pepper sauce), and bread. The dish is typically made with two types of minced meat, but that depends on the exact cevapi recipe,  hand-mixed and formed into a funnel before being grilled. Traditionally it’s served on bread or Turkish lepina. This dish known as “čevap” has origins in the Balkans during Ottoman rule, and represents a type of regional specialty similar to other kebabs like kofte. They are usually served with five or ten pieces on one plate (in groups), alongside chopped onions & milk cream called ‘kajmak’ which acts both as dips for bites into this delicious meal. Each bigger town or area in Bosnia and Herzegovina has its own style of ćevapi. Bosnian cevapi are a regional specialty and definitely worth a try if you’re looking for something different! Be sure to enjoy them with some chopped onions, Ajvar, kajmak cream, and lepina bread.


Kajmak is a thick dairy product similar to clotted cream, sour cream or yogurt, but richer and with a more intense flavor. It is made by boiling milk until the water evaporates and only the cream remains. The cream is then cooled and left to ferment for some time. Kajmak has a mild to strong taste, depending on the fermentation time, and can be eaten as is, used in sauces, spreads etc


Ajvar is a roasted red pepper spread or relish that originates from the Balkans. It is made of roasted peppers, eggplants, and garlic, with vinegar, salt, and sometimes chili peppers. Ajvar can be either sweet or salty, depending on the type of peppers used. It is typically served as a side dish or condiment. Ajvar is a popular condiment in the Balkans and is perfect for eating with ćevapi but not commonly served with!


Ćevapi are typically served on Turkish lepina bread. Bread is an essential part of this dish and can be used to dip into the sauce or as a way to eat the ćevapi. Be sure to try Bosnian ćevapi with some chopped onions, Ajvar, kajmak cream, and lepina bread for the perfect meal!


While Sarajevo-style ćevapi (Sarajevski ćevapi) are the most popular, Banja Luka-style Cevapi (Banjalučki ćevapi) vary from all others because they’re prepared as a meat tile that usually contains four ćevapi linked in a row. They are generally created just with ground beef, salt, and pepper, much like Sarajevo Cevapi, however ground veal and garlic have been known to be added to the mix depending on the recipe.


Travnik Ćevapi is a type of dish that originates from the city of Travnik in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This dish is made with a combination of beef, veal, mutton, and lamb. The meat is often seasoned with salt, pepper, and baking soda before it is grilled. Another important ingredient in ćevapi is the clear broth which is made with beef bones and mutton used to splash over cevapi while being grilled.


Tuzlanski ćevapi is a type of grilled meat dish that comes from Tuzla. They are small and look like logs. People usually make them with a mix of ground mutton, beef, and lamb. You can also find them made with only beef. The meat is mixed by hand and then seasoned with salt and pepper. They are grilled over an open fire and then served with chopped onions, lepina bread, and kajmak.


Mostar-style ćevapi (Mostarski ćevapi) is a type of grilled dish made with beef and lamb where the taste depends on the recipe used. The meat is mixed by hand and then shaped into small sausages before being grilled. They are usually served with chopped onions, lepina bread, and kajmak.

There are different types of meat and spices in this dish across different recipes but what is common is that it is usually served with Lepina, chopped onions, kajmak, and yogurt.


If you’re looking to try Bosnian cevapi, there are a few places around Bosnia that serve them up. Here are a few restaurants that will give you a taste of this delicious dish:


When visiting Sarajevo, Bacarsija is the place to go for ćevapi. This market is full of restaurants that serve up this dish, so you can’t go wrong! Cevabdzinica Zeljo is one of the more popular ones but regardless of the restaurant you go to, you will love it. There are some differences between different recipes but those fine details are difficult to distinguish unless you spend some time in Sarajevo like the locals and eat Cevapi regularly.


If you’re in Banja Luka, make your way over to Roštiljnica A&Dfor some delicious ćevapi. They are known for their traditional recipe and will not disappoint!


For a Tuzla-style ćevapi, head over to Cevabdzinica Sarajka. This restaurant is known for its great food and perfect ćevapi. They use a recipe that has been passed down for generations so you know it’s going to be good!


The city of Mostar is also definitely worth a visit. It’s one of the most charming and historic cities in Bosnia with plenty of things to see and do. Mostar is known for its beautiful architecture and historical sites, but it’s also home to some of the best ćevapi in Bosnia! For some of the most famous ćevapi in all of Bosnia, make your way over to Food House Mostar. This place is always crowded but it’s worth the wait! The cevapi here are grilled to perfection and will leave you wanting more. The restaurant is located in the Old Town, just a few meters away from the famous Mostar Bridge. They serve up some of the best ćevapi in a cozy and relaxed setting. The perfect place to enjoy a meal with friends or family. If you already had your fill of cevapi during your stay in Sarajevo, you can try some other traditional Bosnian dishes at Food House Mostar. The menu features a wide variety of meat and vegetarian options, so there’s something for everyone. And of course, don’t forget to try some of their delicious baklavas for dessert! Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

No matter where you go in Bosnia, you’re sure to find some delicious Bosnian ćevapi. This dish is a must-try when visiting the country!

So there you have it, our guide to the best ćevapi in Bosnia. I hope you get a chance to try this delicious grilled dish during your stay in Bosnia. And if you do, make sure to stop by Mostar for the best ćevapi around! Until next time… happy eating! 🙂