Maybe these should be called the best damn creamy grits ever. You are going to smile from ear to ear when you taste these grits. They sometimes make me want to break out into song… seriously. You can’t go wrong with good grits, cream, butter and beef stock.
This creamy grits recipe is: Gluten Free and loaded with flavor.
Creamy Grits: Heaven on a plate.
This recipe is getting posted up for my friend John. His family was visiting with us about six months ago and I made my famous creamy grits for him. The reaction was priceless. He said that they tasted better than his dad’s… and his dad makes grits every day. What a huge compliment.
These are some seriously creamy grits. That being said, these grits won’t be nominated for any type of “healthy” award. They are decadent and scream comfort food from a mile away. There’s no need to be afraid of cream and butter. Just enjoy the experience.
What are grits?
Simply put, grits are medium or coarse ground cornmeal which has been boiled to a smooth consistency.
Grits are not made with fine ground cornmeal. Fine ground cornmeal does not yield the correct consistency or texture.
What are Quick Grits?
Quick grits are also known as instant grits. Typically these are available in every grocery store in the section with the oatmeal and other hot cereals.
Instant grits have had the germ and the hull removed, which allows the grit to cook more quickly than regular cornmeal.
Quick grits do not have the depth of flavor or the consistency of regular cornmeal for a really satisfying bowl of grits.
What are the best grits to buy?
There are a lot of choices for grits out there. Here’s a helpful guide to buying grits:
- Color: You will notice that the grits I used for this recipe are yellow corn grits. There are white grits and blue corn grits too. Whatever the color, they all cook the same.
- Grind: Make sure you get coarse ground grits. Fine ground cornmeal is not good for grits. It has the wrong texture.
- Quality: Buying good grits is important. You won’t get rich, creamy grits from cheap cornmeal.
- GMO: Finding non-GMO grits is a good option.
- Instant: Avoid instant grits at all costs. They work in a pinch if you have a grit craving sneak up on you, but do not make good grits.
If you’re looking for some good suggestions of grits to buy, I like Palmetto Farms White Stone Ground Grits and Bob’s Red Mill White Corn Grits. Here are some Non-GMO Purple Grits and some Bob’s Red Mill Blue Cornmeal Grits. I’m also a huge fan of Anson Mills, which I get at Wegmans grocery store.
How to Cook Grits
You have to cook grits with love and patience. The more of both that you pour into these little ground bits of corn, the more they will love you back. I’m going to go through the exact steps in the recipe, but there are a couple things you need to know about cooking grits.
- Grits absorb a ton of liquid. One cup of grits will absorb 4 cups of liquid. The key to good grits is not to put all the liquid in at one time. Making good grits is a bit like making a good risotto. You just can’t add all the liquid in at the beginning. We will start with the stock and butter, then add the grits. When the liquid has been absorbed and you see little grit eruptions in the pan, it’s time to add the cream. Again, when the cream has been absorbed and you see little puffs of steam, we add in the water. It sounds crazy, but it works. Every time.
- Grits need a lot of time to get them right. About 45 minutes from start to finish. I know that they get creamy after about 20 minutes, but they don’t achieve their full potential, flavor and creaminess until about 40 minutes. With such a long cook time and cream being added, you have to be pretty vigilant that they don’t burn. Get out a good rubber spatula to be able to scrape the bottom of the pot.
- Grits expand. Make sure that you put them in a large enough pot! You have to remember that they need to be stirred as well. If the pot is too small, you’ll have grits all over your stove which are hard to clean after they dry.
Do grits need cheese to be creamy?
If you don’t want the cheese in these grits, just leave it out. They are completely delicious and creamy grits with or without the cheese! No need to change any of the other ingredients, just omit the cheese.
If you do want make CHEESY GRITS, make sure that you add the cheese AFTER the heat has been turned off on the stove. So only add the cheese when the grits are fully cooked. The cheese will stick on the bottom of the pot almost instantly if it is still on the heat. Adding the cheese after you remove the pot from the stove will save you a TON of scrubbing.
Time to get busy with this creamy grits recipe.
Looking for some other great breakfast ideas?
Here are some great recipes to try:
Final thoughts on the creamy grits recipe:
I just love these grits. They always turn out perfect. If I was to put together my ultimate brunch, it would be these grits along with some sweet potato hash and some scrambled eggs with spicy broccoli. Or if I had some more time I would whip up some some sage breakfast sausage and some crispy bacon.
As a quick side note: I didn’t add in pictures on the process today simply because it is just adding ingredients to the pan. My pictures of the little puffs of steam didn’t turn out well, so just the finished shots are shown today. Maybe I’ll get a video going on how to cook grits sometime soon.
Hopefully when you first taste these grits you have the same reaction that John did at my house. His reaction is one of the many reasons why I’d rather be a chef. Pure joy is something which is hard to deliver. Sometimes the right meal just makes the moment.
The Best Creamy Grits with Cheese
- 2 Cups Beef Stock Unsalted
- 4 TBSP Organic Butter
- 1 Cup Ground Grits
- 1 TSP Kosher Salt
- 1 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1/2 Cup Water
- 1 Cup Shredded Cheddar
- Crumbled Bacon optional topping
- Whole Kernel Corn optional topping
- Add the stock and the butter to a pot that will be large enough for the grits to expand. Turn the head to medium-high. When the butter begins to melt, add in the grits and salt. Stir well and reduce the heat to low.
- After about 12-15 minutes, the grits will start to release puffs of steam. Now is the time to add the cream. Stir well and continue to stir occasionally for the next 12-15 minutes. When the grits start talking again, add in the water. Stir to incorporate.
- Continue stirring occasionally for the next 10 minutes or so. The grits should be super creamy and delicious. Taste just to make sure.
- Turn off the heat. Add in the shredded cheddar and incorporate.
- Serve hot, topped with some shredded cheese, bacon crumbles and a bit of whole kernel corn. Enjoy!