Doritos Are The Secret Ingredient You Need For An Otherworldly Meatloaf

American meatloaf hasn't changed much since the 1870s. Back then, the recipe called for a combination of leftover beef, onion, salt, pepper, and egg, along with bread soaked in milk to bind all the ingredients together. Compared to more modern recipes, the most significant difference is that we use ground beef instead of leftover beef that's been chopped up, and the bread is often substituted for breadcrumbs or crackers. There aren't too many variations beyond adding different spices, but if you want to change up your meatloaf, you may want to consider using Doritos.

Adding Doritos to meatloaf is a lot like adding seasoned breadcrumbs. But while seasoned breadcrumbs typically rely on more subtle flavors like herbs and sometimes cheese, Doritos are saturated in seasoning. Nacho Cheese Doritos, for example, contain not only Romano and cheddar cheese but also tomato powder, garlic powder, red and green bell pepper powder, and other spices. So even though they do function like breadcrumbs in terms of texture, they add a lot more flavor to your meatloaf.

How much Doritos should you add to meatloaf?

Even though Doritos are made with corn flour instead of wheat flour like breadcrumbs are, they can still be substituted evenly. Most meatloaf recipes call for about a cup of breadcrumbs for every 1½ to 2 pounds of ground beef, and the same ratio works just as well if you're using Doritos instead. To achieve the best results, just make sure to run your Doritos through a food processor to turn them into crumbs before measuring them out for your recipe.

If you're worried about the flavor of the Doritos completely overwhelming the taste of your meatloaf, especially if you're using one of the spicier Flamin' Hot varieties, you can always opt for a blend of half plain breadcrumbs and half Doritos. This approach will still allow you to amp up the flavor of your meatloaf, but you'll have more control over the spice and flavor.

Best type of Doritos for meatloaf

Unlike breadcrumbs and saltines, there are many more varieties of Doritos to choose from. Ultimately, the best type of Doritos for your meatloaf depends on your personal taste and what you think will complement the other ingredients in your recipe. If you want to increase the cheese flavor, you may want to go with Nacho Cheese, but on the other hand, you'll get zestier results from Cool Ranch. You can't go wrong with BBQ Doritos either — Alton Brown uses chips in his meatloaf and recommends the barbecue flavor, though he uses potato chips rather than Doritos, as he shared in an episode of "Best Thing I Ever Ate."

Realistically, any leftover or stale Doritos you have on hand should work well in a meatloaf. No matter which flavor you decide to use, keep in mind that it'll also increase the dish's saltiness, so you may want to cut back on any added salt in your recipe or remove it entirely. Once your meatloaf is assembled and fully baked, you'll definitely be able to taste a difference.