A Thanksgiving potluck is a wonderful idea. When each guest brings a dish, everybody gets the chance to contribute and show off a little, and no single person is stuck with the effort and expense of arranging the entire meal on their own.
The only problem with a Thanksgiving potluck is that transporting a big dish of hot, prepared food can be an absolute disaster. Trying to carry a hot pan right out of the oven without spilling the food or getting burned is enough to make a person wish they'd signed up for drinks duty.
But your friends, family, and coworkers deserve to taste your green bean casserole with mushroom bechamel, or your classic Thanksgiving sweet potatoes topped with beautiful, browned peaks of meringue. So before you start rethinking your go-to dish, keep reading this post.
For your next Thanksgiving potluck, we suggest this to-go casserole carrier. And you can use it for things other than casseroles.
Buy: Fancy Panz Portable Casserole Serveware, $20
The carrier — available in six colors— holds a standard, disposable aluminum half-pan. All you have to do is make the food directly in the aluminum pan, then pop it into the carrier when the food is ready, and snap on the lid. The carrier lets you safely hold the dish without oven mitts, and the lid has a removable window, which allows you to keep an eye on the food and make sure nothing is shifting during transit.
If you take public transit, this is much safer than trying to carry a bendy, floppy aluminum pan by itself. And if you drive, this will keep food from sloshing over the side and onto your upholstery. Once you get to your destination, the whole carrier can go right on the table, where it will look a lot more attractive than the bare aluminum pan by itself. Just pop the window out of the lid, so you can serve directly from the carrier.
These dishwasher-safe casserole carriers are ideal for a Thanksgiving potluck, or for anybody who regularly brings prepared foods to gatherings. Just the other day I saw a dad trying to wrangle two 3-year-olds in a parking lot while carrying a flimsy aluminum casserole pan full of baked ziti to a kindergarten potluck. He could really have used one of these.