January 23, 2014

Lighter Cheesy Baked Grits

Do you love grits?  I do!  But one thing I have learned is that Northeasterners do not 'get' grits.  It's sad.  They keep trying to make grits something it isn't.  Case in point these were the questions I got when I served cheesy grits and pulled pork the other night ... "are grits like polenta?" "is this dish some sort of corn bread?" "do you think it would taste good with maple syrup?"  Answers - no, no and ew no!  They're girts, and they're fabulous!
My parents sent me home from Virginia with two HUGE bags of local stone ground grits.  I've had to get creative because that is A LOT of grits.  I have made chicken and grits, grits for breakfast and even threatened to use grits in place of pasta or rice (however I have yet to do that).  So when I stumbled upon this recipe for lighter cheesy grits (and by a Virginia blogger no less) I knew I had to make them and soon!
It you like grits then you will absolutely LOVE this recipe and if you are unsure of whether or not you like grits, or if you have never really tried them before - you should make this recipe ASAP!  The great thing about this recipe is that it uses Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, skim milk instead of whole and reduced fat cheese instead of full - so you get all the creamy deliciousness without all the fat and calories.
 Lighter Cheesy Baked Grits
2 cups stone ground yellow grits (prepared according to directions)
2 TBS butter (separated)
1 - 1.5 cups reduced fat cheddar cheese (shredded)
6oz. plain Greek yogurt (I used Fage)
1.5 milk (skim or 1% - I used skim)
2 eggs, beaten with a fork
1 TBS Tabasco
Cook the grits as directed (adding 1 TBS of butter) ~ while they are cooking shred the cheese, beat the eggs and measure out the milk ~ once the grits are done cooking transfer to a large mixing bowl ~ mix in the cheese, then butter, yogurt, milk, Tabasco and eggs (be sure to add the eggs last so the mixture has had time to cool) ~ transfer to a greased 9 x 13 baking pan ~ bake at 350 degrees for one hour. 
Cheesy grits, pre-bake!
I completely forgot to take a picture afterwards but they were spot on!  And I personally thought they tasted even better the next day.

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