Kavurma is a traditional cooked (fried) meat product manufactured to preserve meat. Some bacterial genera, e.g., clostridia are important in kavurma. The objective of this study was to determine the influence of nitrite and the traditional cooking process on the survival and proliferation of Clostridium botulinum and the autoxidation properties of the kavurma. For this purpose, Clostridium sporogenes having similar characteristics to C botulinum was used, and the samples were inoculated with 106 CFU/g C sporogenes cells before the traditional cooking. The final products were packaged and stored under refrigeration for 6 months, and then the oxidation parameters (TBA, peroxide and free fatty acid values) and C sporogenes counts of samples were determined. It was observed that C sporogenes could survive during the traditional cooking process and storage. However, counts decreased during storage; for example, nitrite containing samples initially had 3.21 log CFU/g C. sporogenes and 2.73 log CFU/g at the end of storage. While nitrite had a slight antimicrobial effect on clostridia, it significantly reduced the TBA, peroxide and FFA values of the samples. In conclusion, it is suggested that addition of 100 ppm of nitrite might be useful in kavurma processing because of its role in limiting oxidation as well as its antimicrobial effect. (c) 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.