Cheesy Grits with Shredded Chicken

Grits are a filling, versatile staple and here we add a punch of nutrients and play up the natural sweetness with shredded carrot. Cheese adds a creamy, salt flavor – any works but a good sharp Cheddar or Parmesan is especially nice. Top with spicy, shredded chicken breast and any number of your favorite toppings; chopped tomato or salsa, cilantro, avocado, radishes, green onions, diced jalapeno, roasted vegetables, corn kernels, etc.

Cooking Terms


  • 2 3/4 cup broth or water (or any combination of both), more as needed
  • 2 cup milk
  • 1 cup grits or polenta
  • 2 each medium carrots
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 each boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese (Cheddar, Parmesan, whatever you like!)
  • 2 tbsp butter, optional
  • each Garnishes

From Your Home

What You Need

Medium pot
Medium pot with lid

Per Serving


  • Different Styles of Grain Bowls

    Use these spice blends to season your grain bowl and avoid bland and boring meals.

    • South Asian: 1 tsp of ground turmeric, 1 tsp of cinnamon, 1 tsp curry powder
    • Southwestern: 1 tsp ground cumin, 1 tsp garlic powder, ½ tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp oregano, 1 bay leaf OR bulk taco seasoning
    • Mediterranean: 1 tsp dried oregano, 1 tsp dried basil, 1 tsp dried parsley, 1 tsp garlic powder, ½ tsp dried dill

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Mise en Place

1. Read through the entire recipe before getting started. Wash and dry all produce. Shred carrots. 

Step #2

2. In a pot, combine 2 cups broth or water with milk, grits, shredded carrots, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until completely tender, 20 – 25 minutes.

Step #3

3. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, place the chicken breasts in a single layer on the bottom. Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and cayenne pepper. (Feel free to add any other aromatics you like! A few slices of jalapeno, a garlic clove, maybe a little beer…). Cover with enough broth or water to cover. Bring to a boil over med-high heat, reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until chicken in cooked through (165 degrees), about 10-14 minutes. Remove chicken to cutting board.

Step #4

4. Use two forks to shred chicken into bite sizes pieces.

Step #5

5. When the grits are tender, remove from heat, and vigorously stir in the 1/2 cup cheese and butter, if using, until the grits are creamy and almost fluffy.

Step #6

6. Spoon grits into bowls, and top with shredded chicken & your garnishes of choice. Finely grate a little more cheese if you’d like, and serve warm with hot sauce and lime wedged if desired.