Cream cheese takes this classic comfort food to the next level, adding even more rich, creamy goodness. You’ll never want to make grits any other way!

If you want to make your Southern grits a stand-out, you’ll love this recipe. Get all the tips and tricks you need to make the most delicious cream cheese grits you’ve ever had!

Cream cheese grits in a bowl with a spoon

Regular grits are already delicious and comforting. But once you try these creamy grits, you’ll make this your default recipe!

These cheesy grits are made with both cream cheese and sharp cheddar cheese, adding depth and richness like no other grits you’ve tried.

The recipe is made with pantry staples like butter, eggs, water, salt, and grits, meaning you can easily whip them up any time you’re in the mood. Enjoy them for breakfast, lunch, or dinner on a chilly day!

Why You’ll Love this Recipe

  • Versatile
  • Made with pantry staples
  • Rich and creamy
  • Easy to make
  • Quick meal for any time of day

Ingredients You’ll Need

Here are some of the ingredients that make these creamy cheese grits the best, creamiest grits you’ve ever tried!

  • Water: Water helps cook and soften the grits – but for even more flavor, you can substitute the 4 cups water with chicken broth or whole milk.
  • Grits: As you can guess, high-quality, good grits are the key to delicious cream cheese grits. I highly recommend Palmetto Farms stone ground grits, but there are other types of grits that would work, too!
  • Salt: Since this is a simple recipe, salt plays a major role in creating that savory flavor that shines through! I highly recommend kosher salt, not table salt.
  • Cream cheese: Cream cheese adds richness and creaminess to the grits.
  • Sharp cheddar cheese: This cheese adds a salty, sharp flavor. Feel free to substitute pepper jack cheese, parmesan cheese, Monterey jack cheese, or any other type of cheese!
  • Butter: Butter adds even more richness and delicious flavor.

Wondering if grits are gluten-free? Find out in this article on are grits gluten-free? You also might like this recipe for grits and eggs! You also might like this recipe for grit cakes for using up leftover grits!

How to Make Cream Cheese Grits

Grits on in a pot with water, and grits being stirred
  • Add the water, uncooked grits, and kosher salt to a medium saucepan set over medium heat.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low just to keep the grits at a gentle simmer.
  • Cover and cook for 20-22 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the grits are tender. (Make sure to stir mixture a few times throughout cooking so they don’t burn on the bottom.)
Grits in a pot with cheese, and cream cheese grits mixed together
  • After the 20-minute cooking time, remove the grits from the heat and add the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and butter. Stir until the cheeses have fully melted.
  • Season with additional salt (and freshly ground black pepper, if using) to taste. Serve immediately or store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
  • (Optional) Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and grease it with nonstick cooking spray (or 1 teaspoon of butter). Crack the eggs into the pan (or as many as will fit) and cover with a lid. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or just until the whites have set. Serve with grits.
Cream cheese grits in a pot

Variation for Quick Grits

  • Bring 4 cups of water to a boil over medium high heat. Whisk in the instant grits and salt.
  • Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until the water has absorbed. Whisk often as the quick cook grits will pop when they begin to thicken.
  • Continue with Step 4 above.

Storage Instructions

  • To store: These creamy cheddar grits are best when eaten shortly after being made, but you can store leftovers in an airtight container or in plastic wrap. Store in the fridge for up to three days.

Cream Cheese Grits FAQs

What are creamy grits made of?

The creamiest grits are made by adding whole milk instead of water, or a bit of heavy cream or sour cream. In this recipe, I add a little cream cheese to add extra richness and flavor!

What can I add to grits to make it taste better?

The flavor of stone-ground grits can be enhanced by adding milk or chicken stock instead of water, or by adding cream, butter, or cheese. You can also add sweet toppings like cinnamon and raisins, syrup, or brown sugar, or with savory toppings like a fried egg, bacon, or green onions.

What is traditionally served with grits?

Savory Southern cheese grits are traditionally served with sausage, bacon, pork chops, or shrimp. Different types of grits are often topped with sugar, brown sugar, or raisins.

Cream cheese grits in a pot on a countertop

Expert Tips and Tricks

  • Cream cheese will incorporate more smoothly if softened ahead of time.
  • You can use pepper jack cheese or another cheese, if you prefer. Freshly shredded cheese will be more flavorful and easier to incorporate than pre-shredded.
  • If you’re using these grits for something like Shrimp & Grits, feel free to swap the water for chicken stock (personal preference, but I do not recommend that substitution for breakfast).

More Breakfast Recipes

I hope you love this recipe as much as we do! If you try this cream cheese grits recipe, be sure to leave me a comment/rating below. I’d love to hear from you!

Cream cheese grits in a pot with a spoon
5 from 6 votes

Cream Cheese Grits

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Servings 4 servings
Cream cheese takes this classic comfort food to the next level, adding even more rich, creamy goodness. You'll never want to make grits any other way!

Ingredients

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup stone ground grits
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ounces cream cheese softened and cut into cubes
  • 4 ounces sharp cheddar cheese shredded
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Instructions 

  • Add the water, grits, and kosher salt to a medium saucepan set over medium heat.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low just to keep the grits at a gentle simmer.
  • Cover and cook for 20-22 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the grits are tender. (Make sure to stir the grits a few times throughout cooking so they don’t burn on the bottom.)
  • Remove the grits from the heat and add the cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and butter. Stir until the cheeses have fully melted.
  • Season with additional salt (and freshly ground black pepper, if using) to taste. Serve immediately or store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
  • Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and grease it with nonstick cooking spray (or 1 teaspoon of butter). Crack the eggs into the pan (or as many as will fit) and cover with a lid. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or just until the whites have set. Serve with grits.

Notes

RECIPE NOTES
  • Cream cheese will incorporate more smoothly if softened ahead of time.
  • You can use pepper jack cheese or another cheese, if you prefer. Freshly shredded cheese will be more flavorful and easier to incorporate than pre-shredded.
  • If you’re using these grits for something like Shrimp & Grits, feel free to swap the water for chicken stock (personal preference, but I do not recommend that substitution for breakfast).

Nutrition

Calories: 265kcal | Carbohydrates: 2g | Protein: 8g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 72mg | Sodium: 913mg | Potassium: 61mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 840IU | Calcium: 237mg | Iron: 1mg

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Hi, I’m Erin!

BS Food Science,

MS Nutrition

I believe you can make amazing, gluten-free food with everyday ingredients that everyone will enjoy. I’m here to share my tried-and-true recipes with you!

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