Christmas Recipes From Team onX

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It’s the time of year to slow down and celebrate the little things. At the end of each hunt season, we find ourselves grateful for the simple ability to head into the hills, rifle or bow in hand, and fill our freezers with meat we’ve harvested with (and for) friends and family. We’re thankful for the outdoor spaces that let us breathe fresh air and get outside, spending time with friends and family.

We asked members of the onX team for their favorite “tried-and-true” Christmas season recipes. From a four-ingredient crab dip to a more complex German Pickle Steak recipe to the Southern classic Derby Pie, here are a few of our recipes for you to mix into your holiday season.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from the onX team.

Hot Crab Dip
“I’m from South Dakota, which may very well be the farthest you can possibly get from an ocean in the US. I grew up knowing that seafood was an extreme delicacy, but during the holidays my family would splurge in its own way. Canned crab gets fancified in this recipe; it doesn’t break the bank, and it reminds me of my Great Plains roots.” – onX’s Maria H.
Prep Time
10 min.
Cook Time
30 min.
Total Time
40 min.
  • 1 4-5 oz. can of crab meat
  • 18 oz. Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 3 T mayonnaise
  • 2 T lemon juice
  1. Wash, clean, and drain crab meat, then mix with other three ingredients.
  2. Bake in a small casserole fish for 30 min. at 350F.
  3. Serve hot with crackers.
Cranberry Chicken
“This Cranberry Chicken recipe is my family’s Christmas Eve meal!” – onX’s Travis S.
Prep Time
20 min.
Cook Time
90 min.
Total Time
110 min.
  • 1 16-oz. can whole cranberry sauce
  • 1 8-oz. bottle Russian dressing
  • 1 envelope regular dry onion soup mix
  • 3 lbs. chicken (breasts and thighs, breasts cut in half for faster cooking)
  1. In a bowl, combine cranberry sauce, Russian dressing, and soup mix. Mix well and set aside.
  2. Rinse chicken, pat dry.
  3. Arrange chicken in one layer in 9×13″ baking dish. Pour cranberry mixture over chicken.
  4. Cover and chill for several hours or overnight (longer is better)
  5. Bake chicken mixture, uncovered, at 300F for about 90 minutes, or until chicken is done. Spoon the sauce over the chicken once or twice while cooking.

Venison Rindsrouladen (German Pickle Steak)
“My mother was born in southwestern Germany shortly after the Second World War and I grew up eating many dishes from that region. As a hunter, I’ve always looked for recipes that honored my heritage and could be made from the game I harvested. This is my favorite.” – onX’s Ryan N.
Prep Time
30 min.
Cook Time
2 1/2 hours
Total Time
3 hours
  • Venison backstrap
  • 1 lb. bacon, cut in half
  • 4 carrots, peeled, quartered, and cut into 2″ lengths (save odds and ends for sauce)
  • 1 bunch celery stalks, cut into thirds lengthwise, then 2″ long (save odds and ends for sauce)
  • 1 jar kosher pickle spears, cut into 2″ length (save juice for sauce)
  • 2 white onions, cut in half and sliced thinly
  • Dijon mustard
  • 4 cloves fresh garlic
  • 6 oz. tomato paste
  • Marjoram to taste (start with 1/4 tsp. and add more if needed)
  • Oregano to taste (start with 1/4 tsp. and add more if needed)
  • Bay leaf
  • Oil for browning meat
  • 1 quart beef stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Toothpicks
  1. Start by slicing venison backstrap into about 1″-thick steaks, then place them between two sheets of plastic wrap and pound until very thin.
  2. Season slices with salt and pepper, than spread a layer of Dijon mustard on one side.
  3. Place two small strips of bacon, a carrot stick, celery stick, pickle spear, and a few strips of sliced onion over the mustard-coated venison pieces. Roll up venison tightly around the vegetables and secure with a couple of toothpicks.
  4. Heat up your favorite skillet with a little oil. Brown rolled venison slowly and carefully, then transfer to your favorite Dutch oven. Add beef stock and begin to simmer.
  5. In the skillet used for browning meat, add garlic, remaining onion slices, and all your odds-and-ends pieces of carrot and celery. Cook until the onions are translucent. Then add marjoram, oregano, a little pickle juice, bay leaf, a little water, and about a tablespoon of mustard to vegetables. Simmer for about 5 minutes.
  6. Back to the Dutch oven and the venison. Add the cam of tomato paste and 1 cup of warm water, then add the vegetables and juices from the skillet to the Dutch oven. Put on the lid and simmer lightly for about 2 1/2 hours. Before serving, remove meat and use a hand blender to gently puree the vegetable and beef stock in the Dutch oven. Lade this sauce generously over the rolled meat and your dumplings, spaetzle, or potato pancakes. Prost!
A person pours bourbon into a mixing bowl for baking.
Derby Pie
“While Derby Pie is traditionally associated with May’s Kentucky Derby, it’s one of my go-to holiday desserts. Along with some other favorite southern staples, Derby Pie always provides a little taste of home during Montana’s cold winters.”
– onX’s Christian F.
Prep Time
15 min.
Cook Time
45 min.
Total Time
1 hour
  • 1/2 flour
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1/2 C butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 Bourbon
  • 1 C pecans, chopped
  • 1 C semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • salt
  • 9″ pie crust

    Bourbon Whipped Cream
  • 1 C heavy cream
  • 2 T sugar
  • 2 T bourbon
  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Mix flour, sugar, eggs, and melted butter. Cool slightly.
  3. Mix in pecans, chocolate chips, Bourbon, vanilla, and a little salt.
  4. Fill pie crust.
  5. Bake for about 45 minutes, until the filling sets.
  6. Let cool slightly before serving. Top with bourbon whipped cream.

    Bourbon Whipped Cream:
  7. Whip the cream in a mixing bowl or stand mixer until soft peaks form.
  8. Slowly add sugar while whipping to desired consistency.
  9. Slowly add bourbon while whipping on a low speed. Put in fridge until ready to serve.

    – Don’t cook with whiskey you wouldn’t drink, and make sure you pour one for yourself to enjoy while the pie cooks.
    – Be prepared to cover the rim of the pie crust with foil if it starts to brown more than you would like.
Baked Pineapple
“This is a Baked Pineapple dessert my wife makes around the holidays.” – onX’s Travis S.
Prep Time
20 min.
Cook Time
60 min.
Total Time
80 min.
  • 1/2 C butter, melted
  • 1 C sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 pinch ground cinnamon
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg
  • 5 slices white bread, cubed
  • 1 20-oz. can crushed pineapple with juice
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a medium-sized casserole dish.
  2. In a mixing bowl, cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Stir in cinnamon and nutmeg. Add bread and crushed pineapple, then mix. Transfer to baking dish.
  3. Bake in preheated oven until bubbly and lightly browned, about 60 minutes.

Jess McGlothlin

Before taking the role of onX Communications Writer, Jess McGlothlin worked as a freelance photographer and writer in the outdoor and fly-fishing industries. While on assignment in the past few years she’s learned how to throw spears at coconuts in French Polynesia, dodge saltwater crocodiles in Cuba, stand-up paddleboard down Peruvian Amazon tributaries and eat all manner of unidentifiable food.