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Skilpadjies – Gluten Free South African Meatball Recipe

  • Author: alittleinsanity - Shannon
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 30 1x


Skilpadjies are a naturally gluten free meatball recipe because they don’t rely on bread crumbs as a binder, but rather use caul fat (a.k.a. crépine or netvet) as a tasty casing to hold everything together (and lend a flavor reminiscent of bacon).


  • 1/2 lb ground lamb rump (or other lean cut of meat such as lamb leg, beef chuck, pork loin)
  • 1/2 lb ground lamb liver (or beef or pork liver)
  • 1/2 lb ground lamb breast (or other fatty cut of meat such as pork belly, beef navel, beef short rib)
  • 1/4 lb caul fat
  • 1/4 cup chopped scallions
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 1 large egg (optional)
  • 5 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp salt
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • optional wheel of either Brie or Camembert cut into small chunks


  1. Put the ground meat, onions, scallions, egg (optional), coriander, salt, and pepper into a mixing bowl and combine thoroughly. (I use my hands)
  2. Form little patties. I made mine roughly 1.5 inches in diameter and roughly 0.75 inches thick.
  3. If you are adding the optional cheese (Brie or Camembert), make sure you’ve got chunks hidden inside your patties.
  4. Wrap your patties in a layer of caul fat. It sticks pretty well to the meat and to itself, so you won’t need to tie any fancy knots or anything.
  5. Preheat you frying pan with your favorite cooking oil.
  6. Pan fry the patties until they form a deep brown crust (flipping every 30 seconds or so to ensure even and thorough cooking without burning).


• Lamb meat would be the most traditional (and in my opinion the tastiest), but substitute away if you have different preferences and/or just want to try something different.

• If you want a more nutritious/traditional/flavorful batch, skip the rump (or equivalent) and double up on the liver.