Grits – Spicy with Cheese

This cook was inspired in October 2018 by the recipe on page 65 of my copy of Rick Bragg’s book The Best Cook in the World. That recipe was provided by his mother; a.k.a. The Best Cook. We liked them much better than the usual salt-and-a-little-black-pepper lightly seasoned dish. The pepper levels made it a bit spicy. Skip down to the Our 2020 recipe as that is how we regularly make grits to have with fried eggs for breakfast.

2 C water
1/2 C 5-minute white Grits. [She used only yellow and not a fast-cook type.]
1/4 t salt, rounded
scant 1/4 t black pepper
scant 1/4 t cayenne
2T butter
1′ square x 1/2″ thick cheddar cheese chopped small and melted into the grits. [She used 1/4 cup of American to add creaminess and offset the cayenne.]

She added milk to the grits when they became too stiff. These did not so maybe next time use less water to cause them to need the milk.


  1. add the grits to the boiling water and stir to keep them from sticking. Reduce heat to simmer continuing to stir and so they do not “go gluey”.
  2. Add milk as they begin to thicken.
  3. Add the other ingredients and continue to stir.
  4. “Only Philistines add bacon or diced ham”

10/28/2018 – Made a double batch changing to the following quantities for the double batch.

  • Our cracked black pepper – 1/4 t rounded
  • cayenne pepper – 1/4 t level

It was still spicy as the black pepper was noticeable. Not too much but we would not want any more heat.

1/16/2019 – Made this from memory and only had a few shakes of cayenne and no black pepper. It was not hot enough. But, did put in half and half (1/4/C) with the water (1 1/2 C) and it was very creamy. Should have included cheese and more peppers.

Our 2020 Weekly Recipe

  • 4 Cups water
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon of our homemade creole seasoning like Kit Whol’s.
  • 1 cup Grits
  • handful of shredded cheddar cheese
  1. Bring water, salt and seasoning to a boil or near boil.
  2. Turn off the fire and slowly pour in grits while stirring.
  3. Return to the fire and continue stirring until it is beginning to simmer again.
  4. Continue stirring for a few minutes.
  5. Cover and let simmer of very low flame for a few more minutes.
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