This summer party essential makes hosting a large gathering a breeze

. (Photo by Mario Hommes/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
. (Photo by Mario Hommes/DeFodi Images via Getty Images) /

From holidays to weekend extravaganzas, people are looking for reasons to gather. While there are always plenty of beverages in the cooler and food to be enjoyed, the summer party essential that can simplify the host’s to-do list might not be found on the produce aisle or in the refrigerator. Sometimes, the simplest idea is the one that makes the biggest difference.

Preparing for a party or large meal takes some planning. While there can be various food choices to be served, one aspect is vital no matter the theme. Hot food needs to stay hot from the first dish to the last plate.

Instead of keeping the grill flame continually lit or the oven always on, the host might prefer an alternative for that serving table. The simple solution is one that professionals have used for decades, Sterno products.

Many people appreciate that Sterno has been keeping food warm in serving trays. It is time for people to better appreciate that those trays are the ultimate party essential.

From keeping plates of hot dogs warm to even cooking a simple seafood boil, those trays with the heating element can be used in a myriad of ways. It offers the home cook versatile in the food being served at any gathering.

For example, the 24 piece Party Set featuring Sterno Green Ethanol Canned Heat can be the option for a burger bar, seafood boil, or even a simple Italian dinner can be served with this option. Over several hours, the food can stay warm. It helps the host put the focus elsewhere, like being involved in the conversation not standing over the trays.

Building on the summer party essential conversation, a great recipe can be a crowd pleaser. Recently, Sterno partnered with Next Level Chef’s Chef Shay to share his Twice Baked Potato Casserole. While many people love a baked potato, this recipe is easier to serve to a larger crowd. More importantly, when served in the Sterno Party Set, it can be the easy dish that serves a large crowd.

Here’s how to make Chef Shay’s Twice Baked Potato Casserole.


  • 4 lbs Yukon Gold Potatoes
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 5 tbsp butter
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1/3 cup whipped cream cheese
  • 1 large jalapeno, minced
  • 2 tbsp minced chives
  • 1 tsp salt.
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp black pepper


  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large casserole dish, add potatoes and poke holes all over them with a fork. Coat with oil and season with salt. Bake, covered with aluminum foil, for about 45 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven and use a potato masher to mash potatoes right in the casserole dish. Add all the remaining ingredients, only mixing in one cup of the cheese and using the remaining cheese to sprinkle on top. Taste for seasoning and add more salt if necessary; you can add more milk if you like it creamier
  • Bake, uncovered for another 30 minutes, or until bubbling on the sides and browned on top.

This One Dish Twice-Baked Potato Casserole can easily be served in the Sterno party pack and stay warm for the entire event. It is that versatile dish that is a summer party essential.