This cheese grits casserole is the perfect brunch item that is a Southern favorite. A hearty dish with ground sausage and tons of flavor.
Ever made a cheese grits casserole? If you love this old fashioned breakfast dish, I bet you’ll love this out of the box idea! Just one of many quick and easy casserole recipes here on our site. (affiliate links present)
Every year we make and look for new Mother’s Day brunch menu ideas. It is fun to add something new each year and throw together dishes are the best. One you can slice and serve easily is even better.
You can of course alter this to add a bit of heat to it as well with some diced chiles, pico de gallo salsa and/or hot sauce. Alternatively you can have these items on the side so everyone can amp it up on their own plate.
A few things will need to be precooked before folding them all together and baking in your casserole dish. The sausage of course shouldn’t be added in raw, that isn’t a good idea ever, and grits need to be quickly boiled tender too.
If you make these often you most likely have your own favorite method. Stovetop is of course obvious and a preference of many. Personally I use my Ninja Foodi or Instant Pot to make pressure cooker grits instead.
Are grits healthier than oatmeal?
No. It is actually small pieces of corn kernels with the germ and bran removed. Those are what has fiber and nutrition. Whole rolled oats prepared as oatmeal is a healthier choice.
Compared to muffin recipes that have added fat and calories it would be a better choice than those though if you had to compare. That would be assuming you ate them plain, without butter or other caloric ingredients.
- All in moderation though my friends. Especially if you are serving a variety of dishes to guests this is a great one that is likely new to others.
And it’s pretty easy to make; Once the 2 items are prepped and precooked you’re ready to mix, mix, dump and bake to perfection. Here’s a peek of it getting all set. Cheese is a choice but sharp cheddar is usually our preference.
Can grits be made ahead of time?
I get this question about many of my holiday dishes. It makes sense to try and prep as much as possible since there may be a lot to do on those special days. You can make these ahead of time if needed. Personally I don’t do this.
If you want to you’d need to make, cool them, cover in a bowl and store in fridge for up to 2 days. When ready break them up, pour hot water in until they loosen up, and heat again over medium heat. Seems like a lot of extra work to me, but possible….
Breakfast Casserole with Grits
- Water or broth
- Instant grits, prepared
- Salt and pepper
- Ground sausage, spicy Jimmy Dean in a roll is incredible
- Cheese, grated
- Milk and butter
Once folded together it is time to dump it into your 9×13″ casserole dish.
If you do want to make this ahead of time I suggest you go all the way and make it in the dish. Then cool, cover with plastic wrap, put in the fridge the night before to help with prep. The next day bring to room temperature and bake.
Time needed: 1 hour.
Cheese Grits Casserole
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray your 9×13″ baking dish with some non stick spray.
Put water or broth into a large saucepan with 1/2 tsp salt and bring water to a boil. Slowly stir in grits and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes stirring a few times throughout.
OR prepare them your way of choice so they are creamy and ready. Then remove from heat and set aside to cool just a bit.
Then brown the ground sausage in a pan, drain when it is no longer pink, set aside.
Beat eggs and milk in a bowl and set aside In a large bowl pour grits in and your browned sausage +1.5 c of cheddar cheese. Fold together and then add your egg/milk mixture and mix again.
Add butter that has been melted, and pour that in with a little pepper and remaining salt.
Pour into your 9×13 prepared pan and bake uncovered for about 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center of cheesy grits side dish comes out clean.
Remove and set on a cooling rack for 5 minutes before slicing so it stays together. If you need a bit more time to complete other dishes then just put a few paper towels on top with foil over that.
Why? If you just add foil the steam will get trapped and make the top a bit wet and slimy. With the addition of paper towels that will absorb the steam and keep it warm without the ick that may build up with moisture. Just a tip.
Note that I have not used stone ground grits for this so I don’t know how it affects the texture or taste. If you swear by that style then go for it and please let me know what you think below.
As for the seasonings you can add more if you wish. Some swear by a bit of worcestershire sauce, others need garlic powder inside. It is up to you. Pico de gallo salsa is great on the top when served too.
For the ultimate bites of comfort food you’ve gotta try this easy cheese grit recipe and share the recipe with those who love it too!
Can you freeze cheese grits casserole?
Once it is cooled in the pan you can cover it with foil and freeze. To reheat allow to come to room temperature, slice into squares, and microwave in smaller pieces for the best results. May take 1 minute to warm through.
Did your mom or Grandmother make this slightly different and we should hear all about it? Let us know below so we can include your “secret ingredient” into the mix next go around. 😉
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Cheese Grits Casserole
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and spray 9×13" baking dish with non stick spray.
- Put your water or broth into a small saucepan with 1/2 tsp salt and bring to a boil. Slowly whisk in grits and reduce to low. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes stirring a few times throughout.
- Brown ground sausage in a pan, drain when it is no longer pink and set aside. Beat eggs and milk in a bowl and set aside
- In a large bowl combine cooked grits and sausage +1.5 c of cheese. Fold together and then add your egg/milk mixture and mix again. Melt butter and pour that in with a little pepper and remaining salt.
- Pour into your 9×13 prepared pan and bake uncovered for about 1 hour or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Remove and set on a cooling rack for 5 minutes before slicing so it stays together.