The Nacho Tip Rachael Ray Really Needs You To Hear

Some of America's favorite foods are so simple that you barely need a recipe to get them right...or so it seems. Take pizza. All you need to make pizza is dough, sauce, and cheese, but as anyone who's ever tried to make killer, restaurant-style pizza at home can tell you, there's actually a lot more to it than that. There are message boards literally dedicated to making perfect pizza at home, blogs about hunting down the best pizzas in the country, and plenty of ready-made products (frozen pizza, pizza dough mixes, etc.) proving the point that making the stuff from scratch just isn't as easy as it seems.

Another dish that isn't quite so straightforward as the average diner might expect? Nachos. The untold truth of nachos is that they're actually a fairly recent invention, originally created to feed hungry soldiers traveling between military bases in Texas and Mexico during World War II. These days, it seems like every bar, family restaurant, and sports game snack shack has nachos on the menu, but anyone can tell you that some nachos are way better than others. Nachos can be incredibly complex and layered, but Rachael Ray recently shared that one of the most important parts of crafting a perfect pan of nachos has to do with its most basic building block. If you don't have this aspect down, the rest of the dish falls apart — literally. 

It's all about the chip

A lot of things can go wrong with nachos, from using the wrong kind of cheese to opting for salsa that's too spicy or, worse, too mild. But nothing's worse than a soggy plate of nachos, or trying to pick up the perfect bite of melted cheese and toppings only for your chip to snap in half as you lift it to your mouth, spluttering salsa everywhere. The solution, Rachael Ray says, is simple: You need a thicker tortilla chip.

"Buy or make a thicker chip," Ray passionately begged in an Instagram video, "because you need it to stand up to the toppings." Thin and crispy tortilla chips are a pleasure all their own and are also delicious paired with salsa or pico de gallo. But if you want a plate of chips loaded up with nacho cheese, salsa, guacamole, meat, beans, jalapeño, and the works, then you need something that can stand up to the job. It's the secret to creating the perfect nachos, according to Ray. So, what sort of chips should you look for? Homemade tortilla chips, made with homemade or store-bought corn tortillas, should do the trick nicely. Or, you could simply grab a bag of what 50 percent of Americans said is their go-to brand of tortilla chips: Tostitos.