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This magical version of the traditional Southern dish doesn't contain any artificial dyes. 

Elisabeth Sherman
March 22, 2018

A restaurant in Charleston is reviving the unicorn food trend, which you might have thought we left behind in 2017. Millers All Day, a brunch restaurant in the South Carolina culinary hot-spot, has created what it’s dubbed Unicorn Grits, a pink twist on the traditional Southern dish.

According to an Instagram post from the restaurant, the grits don’t contain any artificial dyes. As an article in Garden and Gun reports, the dish gets its color simply from red kernels of regular corn.

A farmer who supplies Millers All Day owner Greg Johnsman with corn, selected and grew stocks of red corn (which get its color from a random genetic abnormality) “for nearly a decade,” according to Garden and Gun. Johnsman bought out his entire supply of red corn, and thus Unicorn Grits were born.

The restaurant’s executive chef, Madison Tessener, uses the red corn for more than just grits though: She’s used the ground kernels for the crust of an icebox pie and in a savory cornmeal cookie.

Millers All Day proves that there is a right way to pay homage to the unicorn trend. There’s no added glitter or sugary syrup, just plain old grits prepared with a natural ingredient that imparts the dish with an unexpected color.

Do we have to keep adding the unicorn label to every pink food? Maybe that’s a debate for another time... (But the answer, of course, is no).

Millers All Day sells bags of grits and cornmeal milled from the red corn so that anyone can add a dash of pink to their favorite dishes, whether it’s breakfast or dessert. If you don’t live in Charleston and aren’t visiting anytime soon, but you need that pop of pastel in your next meal, you might try Pearl Butter, a line of coconut based condiments in pink, blue, and purple that can be added to just about anything, from smoothies to lattes.