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How to Reheat Grits – I Test 4 Methods

While nothing beats the creamy texture of freshly cooked grits, I’ve set out on a mission to find the best ways to revive them. 

After testing four different methods, here’s a detailed guide to reheating grits.

The best way to reheat grits is on the stove or in the microwave. Break the grits up with a fork and stir in some extra milk or water to remoisturise them. Then heat on a low heat, stirring constantly to prevent any lumps.

How I Tested Reheating Grits

I made a delicious batch of creamy, perfectly seasoned grits, enjoyed them fresh for my dinner, and refrigerated the leftovers. The next day, I reheated the grits using four different methods:

  • On the stove: The best method.
  • In the microwave: Good if you’re in a hurry.
  • In the oven: Okay for large portions.
  • Making grit cakes: A fun option.

Tips For Reheating Grits

If you’re making the grits in advance, knowing you will want to reheat them later, make them on the thin side. They will thicken up as they cool.

You will need to add quite a bit of extra liquid to get the grits back to their creamy consistency, so don’t be stingy! Especially if you’re reheating cheesy grits.

Reheating Grits on the Stovetop

Time: 10 minutes
Rating: 9/10

  1. Set a pan over low heat on the stove.
  2. Add the grits, breaking them up with a fork.
  3. Gradually add in extra liquid (milk, water, or stock) while continuously whisking the grits.
  4. Keep stirring and adding liquid bit by bit until the grits reach your desired texture.

The constant stirring is key to preventing lumps and ensuring a smooth texture. It also helps make sure the grits don’t catch and char on the bottom of the pan (this would be a disaster!).

Results: This method was my favorite. It took a bit more attention than the other methods, but the result was creamy, smooth grits that tasted almost as good as the original batch.

Reheating Grits in the Microwave

Time: 2-3 minutes
Rating: 8/10

  1. Break up the chilled grits and place them in a microwave-safe dish.
  2. Stir in 1-2 tablespoons of extra liquid to loosen the mixture. You can go for milk, water, or stock.
  3. Cover the dish with a lid or microwave-safe cover.
  4. Heat in 30-second increments, stirring well each time, and adding more liquid if needed.

Covering the dish is vital because it keeps the steam in and makes sure the grits don’t dry out. 30 seconds might not seem like long, but regular stirring is really important to make sure you don’t end up with lumpy grits.

Results: The microwave method is quick and convenient. The grits were reasonably creamy, though not as smooth as the stovetop method. It’s a good option if you’re short on time.

Reheating Grits in the Oven

Time: 20-25 minutes
Rating: 6/10

  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. Place the grits in an oven-safe dish and stir in a few tablespoons of milk, water, or stock.
  3. Cover the dish tightly with foil to keep the moisture in.
  4. Heat for 10 minutes, then stir and check the consistency.
  5. Add any extra liquid, and continue heating until warmed through. The exact timing will depend on portion size.

Keep an eye on the moisture level, and don’t be afraid to add liquid if the grits start to dry out. But don’t open the foil too often – every time you open it, you’ll let all the steam out which you want to avoid.

It’s a fine balance.

Results: I only recommend the oven method if you have lots of grits to reheat. It’s too slow for small portions, and the end result isn’t as creamy as it could be because of the lack of stirring.

Making Grit Cakes

Time: 5 minutes
Rating: 9/10

  1. Spread your leftover grits (while still hot) into a casserole dish and chill until firm.
  2. Turn the chilled grits out onto a cutting board and slice them into squares.
  3. Pan-fry the grit cakes in a lightly oiled skillet until golden and crispy.

You can also call these grit cakes polenta.

And once the girt cakes are cooked you can top them with all sorts of things. MY favorite is going with a pizza theme with tomato sauce and cheese (bonus points if the grits are already cheesy.

Results: This method transforms the grits into a delightful new dish. The outside is crispy, while the inside remains soft and creamy. It’s a fantastic way to repurpose leftovers into an exciting meal or side dish.

How To Keep Grits Warm

You can keep grits warm in a double boiler or Bain Marie. Place your cooked grits into a heatproof bowl and set this over a pot of simmering water. The steam will gently keep the grits warm without drying them out or burning them. You can periodically add a drop of hot water or milk if needed.

You’ll also need to cover the top of the grits with a butter wrapper or plastic wrap to keep a crust from forming.

If you have a slow cooker, you can also use this. Transfer the cooked grits into it and set the cooker to the “Keep Warm” setting. Stir occasionally to keep the texture consistent.

How To Store Grits

Allow the grits to cool to room temperature before storing them, then place them in an airtight container. You can keep them in the fridge for up to 5 days. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the grits before sealing the container to prevent a skin forming.

Can You Freeze Grits

Yes, you can freeze grits. Make sure the grits are completely cool before portioning them out into a muffin tin lined with plastic wrap or individual freezer bags. Remove any excess air from the freezer bag before freezing the grits for up to 3 months.

How To Reheat Grits From Frozen

You can thaw grits in the fridge overnight and then reheat them over a low heat on the stovetop. If you’re in a hurry, you can use the defrost setting on your microwave. Another option is to throw the freezer bag straight into boiling water and let the grits warm that way.

How To Reheat Grits [Tested Methods]

In this short recipe, I show you the best way to revive and reheat your leftover grits.
5 from 1 vote
Print Pin Rate
Course: Side Dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: How To Reheat Grits
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 1 person
Calories: 59kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 portion Grits

Instructions

  • Set a pan over low heat on the stove.
  • Add the grits, breaking them up with a fork.
  • Gradually add in extra liquid (milk, water, or stock) while continuously whisking the grits.
  • Keep stirring and adding liquid bit by bit until the grits reach your desired texture and temperature.

Nutrition

Serving: 100g | Calories: 59kcal

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