reheat grits

The Right Ways To Reheat Leftover Grits: 2 Easy Ways for An Unbelievably Creamy Perfection

Smooth and creamy, grits are a versatile dish that pairs perfectly with so many delicious accompaniments. This Southern staple is not only perfect for breakfast but also lunch and dinner. Simply change the side dish, and you’ll have wholesome comfort food for any time of the day!

Sometimes, we cook too much and end up with leftovers. So, what should you do with leftover grits? Can you reheat them for tomorrow’s breakfast?

Of course, you can! Keep them refrigerated, and you can enjoy the comfort food for a quick meal throughout the week. More importantly, reheating grits is fast and straightforward!

Keep reading to find all you need to know about reheating leftover grits.

What Are Grits?

Grits are a type of porridge made from boiled cornmeal or stone-ground corn. It originated from the southern part of the United States and is considered a staple in the region. Nowadays, this corn-based meal is also available throughout the country.

The preparation is quite simple, similar to cooking polenta. When slowly cooked in liquid, the ground corn releases starch, making the final product creamy and smooth.

Can You Reheat Grits?

Now, let’s talk about leftovers.

Some recipes call for water for the cooking and finish with cream, butter, and milk. Meanwhile, some others prefer to cook the grain in fresh milk. Both will result in creamy and delicious meals that pair perfectly with various dishes!

Grits cooked in plain water are easier to reheat because you don’t have to worry about the milk that will burn during reheating.

When refrigerated, this Southern staple will solidify, thus becoming thick and dry. No worries – you can loosen them up by adding water, milk, or broth during reheating.

Similar to reheating oatmeal, there are two quick options to warm up leftover grits. The best and recommended method is reheating on a stovetop. If that’s not feasible, you can also warm them up in the microwave.

Keep reading to find the detailed, step-to-step instructions below!

Option 1: Reheating Grits on a Stovetop

Reheating on the stovetop is definitely the best method to bring back the freshness and creaminess of leftover grits. If you need to deal with a big batch to feed an army, this technique is certainly your best bet.

Here is the step-to-step guide.

1. Put the grits in a non-stick pot.

2. Add liquid of your choice to loosen up the thick, cold texture. You can add some water, fresh milk, or broth. Adjust the amount of the liquid according to your preference. You can also add heavy cream and butter for extra creaminess.

3. Stir to combine the mixture.

4. Turn on the stove and cook on low heat for a few minutes. Avoid using high heat to prevent the meal from drying out quickly, and even worse, from getting burnt.

5. Stir constantly as they reheat. Don’t forget to scrape off the bottom of the pan, so nothing sticks to it.

6. Add more liquid if necessary to reach the desired creaminess and consistency.

7. When the grits are evenly and thoroughly reheated, your dish is ready to serve!

Option 2: Reheating Grits in the Microwave

Although not the best method, your microwave is still a decent solution to reheat grits. It’s also great when you have to warm up a small portion for yourself.

Follow the instructions below, so comfort food will come out as lovely and tasty.

1. Place the grits in a suitable, microwave-safe bowl.

2. Add some liquid and stir well. You can add water, milk, or broth.

3. Microwave over medium heat in 30 seconds intervals. Check and stir well after each cycle. Repeat until they are perfectly warmed up and reach the desired texture.

4. Serve immediately with your favorite side dish!


Can you eat grits the next day?

Of course! If you cook a big batch and have leftovers, store them in an airtight container. For easy removal, spray the container with non-stick spray so it won’t stick to the surface. Properly refrigerated, the leftovers will stay fresh for up to 5 to 7 days.

How long can cooked grits sit out?

Just like any other cooked food, the corn-based meal should be refrigerated within 2 hours after cooking. If the room temperature is pretty high or above 90 °F, this Southern-staple must be refrigerated in an hour.

Are grits the same as polenta?

Yes. Basically, these two staple foods are made from ground corn. The significant difference is the type of corn used. Grits are typically made from white corn (hominy), while polenta is made from yellow corn.

Do dry grits go bad?

Yes. They might still be edible after the best-by date on the package. However, it is highly recommended to cook them before this date. To determine if the dry grains have gone bad, check for discolorations, visible molds, and unpleasant aroma.

What can you do with leftover grits?

They can be easily reheated for a hassle-free meal. Alternatively, you can also transform them into more appetizing dishes, such as crispy grits cakes, grits fritters, cheesy casserole, and so on.

In A Nutshell

Grits are a tasty, quick meal you can enjoy for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Whether preparing in advance or dealing with some leftovers, this Southern staple deserves a good reheating.

You have two great options to reheat leftover grits; on the stove or in the microwave. Either way, add some liquid (water, milk, or broth) to loosen up the thick texture and make the comfort food creamy and smooth again!

Check our detailed instructions above on how to reheat grits the right way!

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*image by lenyvavsha/depositphotos

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