A new and simple method was developed to produce gelatin nanoparticles of ∼ 30–40 nm for use as carriers for drug release applications. The nanoparticles were uniform in size and well dispersed. An anticancer drug, 5-fluorouracil, was encapsulated with an efficiency as high as 85%. The nanoparticles showed sustained release of 5-fluorouracil, and release rates varied with amount of crosslinking in the nanoparticles. © 2011 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Appl Polym Sci, 2011.