Pumpkin-Sage Cheese Grits

Pumpkin-Sage Cheese Grits
Pumpkin-Sage Cheese Grits

Elizabeth Karmel is the executive chef of New York City and Washington, DC’s Hill Country Barbecue Market, Hill Country Chicken and the soon-to-be opened Hill Country Barbecue Market Brooklyn 9. A master of the grill, Karmel also knows how to expertly craft soulful dishes using humble Thanksgiving leftovers. She recommends using leftover ingredients to create a delicious breakfast for guests the next morning. 

For this recipe and more, check out our roundup of 10 dishes Southerners always have on their Thanksgiving table.

Deliver Ingredients


  • 3 Cups water
  • 1 Cup stone ground grits, such as Anson Mills, Red Mule or Bob’s Red Mill
  • 1/2 Cup half-and-half
  • 1/2 Cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 3 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 6 fresh sage leaves, chiffonade
  • 1/2 Cup canned pumpkin puree
  • 1 Pinch of fresh grated nutmeg
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground white pepper


Make the grits by boiling the water in a large saucepan or the top of a double boiler. The double boiler insures against scorching.  Slowly add the grits by sifting them through one hand while whisking with the other. 

Cover the pan and simmer on a low heat for 25-30 minutes.  Stir occasionally to prevent scorching.  Add half and half, cheese and butter, sage and pumpkin and stir well.  Continue cooking if grits are undercooked or watery.  When they are “just right” season to taste with nutmeg, salt, and white pepper. 

Set aside, but keep warm until serving.

Pumpkin Shopping Tip

Look for vegetables that are firm and bright in color – avoid those that are wilted or have wrinkled skins, which are signs of age.

Pumpkin Cooking Tip

Vegetable should typically be cooked as quickly as possible, as they can become bland and mushy, and lose vitamins and minerals.