Baked Garlic Cheddar Grits

     I decided that since Thanksgiving is coming up this month and I know a lot of people are already planning their menus, that I would blog about Thanksgiving side dishes all this week.  That way it will give my readers plenty of time to decide what they are making this year.  I still haven’t decided exactly what I’ll be making but the dishes I’m sharing this week are all in the running.

 When my brother came to visit he gave me a specific menu to make for him.  One of the items on his list was cheesy grits.  While I don’t mind grits they aren’t my favorite side dish.  I looked through tons of recipes but none sounded too good until I came to Paula Deen’s recipe.  Included in her grits were one and a half pounds of cheddar cheese, 1 stick of butter, and tons of garlic. 
     I thought a pound and a half of cheese was a little much so I cut it down to a pound and cut the butter in half as well.  The grits smelled amazing as they were baking.  They came out of the oven a delicious golden brown.  The first taste was heaven-creamy, cheesy, buttery, and hints of garlic in a fluffy pile.  They were fantastic.  My brother and his girlfriend absolutely loved them.  Whether you like grits or not, this recipe would be hard not to like with all the butter and cheddar that went into it.  This recipe is going into my holiday side dish file for sure!

Baked Garlic Cheddar Grits (adapted from Paula Deen)
4 c. chicken broth

1 t. salt

1/2 t. black pepper
1/2 t. garlic powder
1 1/2 c. grits

8 oz. cheddar cheese, cubed

1/2 c. low fat milk

2 eggs, beaten
1/4 c. butter
4 garlic cloves, minced
8 oz. grated sharp white cheddar cheese
1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.
2.  Bring the broth, salt, pepper, and garlic powder to a boil.  Stir in the grits and whisk until completely combined.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes or until the grits are thick. 

3.  Add in the cubed cheese and milk.  Stir until totally melted.  Gradually add in the eggs, butter, and garlic, mixing until everything is well combined.
4.  Pour the grits into the prepared pan and top with white cheddar cheese.  Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the cheese is golden brown and the grits are set.
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