How to Cook Grits Using Milk & Water

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Although techniques and opinions vary widely on the subject of grits, most recipes for old-fashioned creamy grits call for both water and milk in its preparation. Grits, a staple of Southern breakfast tables, are made from coarsely ground corn kernels, typically boiled in water and/or milk to a porridge-like consistency. There are several varieties available, most notably "regular grits," which take up to 20 minutes to cook, and the traditional stone-ground grits that can take more than an hour. Whichever version you prefer, you can enjoy your grits with cheese, smothered with sauteed shrimp or just plain with salt and butter.

Things You'll Need

  • Large pot
  • Large bowl
  • Wooden spoon
  • Fine-mesh sieve
  • Salt
  • Butter
  • Heavy cream
  • Combine equal parts water and milk in a large saucepan on the stove -- about 2 cups each for every 1 cup of regular or stone-ground grits you are making. Heat to a simmer.

  • Pour the grits into the hot water and milk on the stove, stirring frequently, until the grits reach a thick and creamy consistency and are tender to taste. Always scrape the bottom of the pan when stirring to prevent the grits from sticking and burning.

  • Stir in additional milk and water in equal amounts as needed to keep the grits from thickening too quickly before the dish has reached a tender and creamy consistency. For regular grits, it should take roughly 20 minutes to fully cook, while stone-ground grits generally take over an hour.

  • Remove the grits from the heat and stir in salt, butter and milk or heavy cream to taste. Keep the grits covered and warm until you are ready to serve them.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you are short on time, use quick-cooking grits that cook in about 10 minutes, although they won't have the same texture and flavor.
  • Add a few dashes of salt to the milk and water mix before adding the grits to give them better flavor.
  • If you are using stone-ground grits, before cooking pour the grits into a large bowl and fill the bowl with enough water to just cover the grits. Stir the grits vigorously to loosen any remaining hull or chaff of the corn kernel and skim them from water with a fine-mesh sieve. Drain the grits into a colander and continue your recipe.
  • Avoid instant grits whenever possible -- they are devoid of any of the flavor and texture of true grits.

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References

  • Photo Credit George Doyle/Stockbyte/Getty Images
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