Cepelinai | Source: Shutterstock
Cepelinai | Source: Shutterstock

Master This Cepelinai Recipe for a Mouth-Watering Taste of Lithuanian Cuisine

Milla Sigaba
May 12, 2024
05:30 A.M.
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Unveil the savory secrets of Lithuanian cuisine with this traditional Cepelinai recipe, a culinary delight that promises to transport your taste buds straight to the cozy kitchens of Lithuania.

If you're eager to explore a unique and hearty dish from the heart of Lithuania, look no further than this cepelinai recipe. Cepelinai, a beloved Lithuanian comfort food, is a sumptuous dumpling that combines savory meat with a velvety potato exterior.

Perfect for a family dinner or a cozy meal, making cepelinai at home is simpler than you might think, and the results are absolutely delicious. Join us as we guide you through the steps to create this traditional dish, ensuring that you can bring a taste of Lithuanian cuisine right into your kitchen.

Crafting Your Cepelinai: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Perfect Lithuanian Dumpling


  • 3 small white onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons olive oil
  • 500 grams beef or pork mince, or 250 grams of each
  • 1 medium egg
  • 150 grams smoked pancetta, sliced into strips
  • 2.5 kilograms starchy potatoes (Agria, Maris Piper, or similar), peeled
  • ½ teaspoon citric acid or lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons potato starch or cornflour
  • Chopped dill, to taste
  • Sour cream, to serve (optional)


  1. Prepare the Filling: In a frying pan, sauté onions and garlic in 1 teaspoon of olive oil until softened. Transfer half to a bowl, let cool, then mix with mince and egg. Season well.
  2. Cook the Pancetta: In the same pan, use the remaining oil to fry the pancetta until the fat begins to render. Add the remaining onion and garlic mixture, and cook until golden. Set aside.
  3. Boil Potatoes: Boil a third of the potatoes until tender, mash thoroughly, and let dry.
  4. Grate and Drain Potatoes: Grate the rest of the potatoes, squeeze out excess liquid using a muslin or tea towel, and separate the starch.
  5. Mix Potato Dough: Combine raw and cooked potatoes, add starch, citric acid or lemon juice, and additional cornflour or potato starch. Season well.
  6. Shape and Cook: Form the potato mixture into thin cakes, add the meat filling, and shape into large egg-like dumplings. Cook in simmering water for 20-25 minutes until they float.
  7. Serve: Reheat the pancetta mixture, place the dumplings on plates, top with sour cream, the pancetta mixture, and sprinkle with dill.

By following these steps, you'll master this perfect cepelinai recipe and enjoy a traditional Lithuanian feast that's both comforting and delectable. Each bite of these meat-filled dumplings offers a delightful mix of textures and flavors, perfect for any occasion.

Ready to explore more Eastern European culinary delights? Check out our article on mastering the perfect meat pierogi recipe for another taste of regional comfort food.

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