Allergy-Friendly Football Brownies with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Huddle up everyone! For this installment of my Kitchen Craft series for Allergic Living, I’m going to show you how to make Football Brownies.

With their soft, chewy chocolate brownie base, dairy-free buttercream frosting and laces of white icing piping, these brownies will make you the MVP with your own home team.

As this is a craft project, my instructions will focus mostly on the shaping, frosting and decorating. For the brownie base, I decided to use a purchased mix – to make it easier for those who are short on either time or baking experience.

I chose The Pink Bakery’s No Frownie Brownie Mix, which just requires adding a neutral-tasting oil and water. This is not a sponsored post, I simply find their premium baking mixes exceptionally good. But feel free to use your own favorite mix or homemade recipe that can make 16 brownies.

FYI, The Pink Bakery produces its mixes in a dedicated facility. Their products are Top 9-free and gluten-free, plus free of: celery, coconut, lupine, mustard, and sulfites. Note that some products contain corn.

Ashley Smith with her sons.

For this project, I’ll introduce two beginner piping techniques. We’ll use an open star decorating tip to create a fun chocolate buttercream zigzag and a No. 2 decorating tip to add the decorative lacing details. The result: a fun, sweet football-themed treat.

Stay tuned for more of my Kitchen Craft series, designed to help inspire Allergic Living followers with allergy-friendly baking. We may have to manage food allergies, but with a pinch of patience, a cup of creativity and a liter of love, we’ll create beautifully crafted desserts that everyone can enjoy. Inclusion never tasted so sweet.

Football Brownies with Chocolate ‘Buttercream’ Frosting

Makes: 16 football brownies
Free of: all top allergens and gluten


Chocolate Frosting                                                                       
  • 3/4 cup dairy-free, soy-free margarine (room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 1/4 cups powdered (confectioners’) sugar, sifted
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tbsp dairy-free milk beverage or water
Vanilla Piping Icing
  • 1/4 cup dairy-free, soy-free margarine (room temperature)
  • 1 1/4  to 1 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tbsp dairy-free milk beverage or water
  • 10 drops white food coloring (optional)
The Tools
  • Rectangular brownie pan, 9×13-inch size
  • 3 medium or large mixing bowls
  • Wooden or silicone mixing spoon
  • Spatula
  • Football or oval cookie cutter
  • 2 decorating or pastry bags
  • Open star decorating tip
  • No. 2 round decorating tip


  1. Begin by preparing your favorite allergy-friendly brownie mix, following the package’s instructions. Use a non-stick pan or greased glass pan and line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper to protect against scratches from the cookie cutter.
  2. Let brownies cool completely. At least two hours.
  3. As the brownies cool, set the margarine on the counter, bringing it to room temperature. You’ll need it first for the frosting, and later for the white piping icing.
  4. Making Chocolate Frosting: In a medium or large mixing bowl, combine the margarine, unsweetened cocoa powder, powdered sugar, vanilla, and water. Mix with an electric hand mixer on low speed, until well-combined and smooth.
  5. Scrape down sides of the bowl with a spatula and mix. Scoop frosting into a decorating bag with an open star tip. Set aside.
  6. Making White Piping Icing: In a medium or large mixing bowl, mix margarine, powdered sugar, vanilla, and water with an electric hand mixer on low, until smooth. Optional: Mix in up to 8-10 drops of white food coloring for a bright white icing.
  7. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, mix, and place white piping icing into a decorating bag with a number 2 round decorating tip.
Shaping & Decorating
  1. Now that your brownies are cooled, firmly press an oval or football-shaped cookie cutter into the brownie. Slightly twist to loosen the brownie and remove from pan. Note: To prevent waste, place your first cutter closest to a corner edge and try to not leave space between each football. (I cut out 16 football brownies from a pan slightly smaller than the standard 9×13-inch.) Any remaining brownie pieces can be stored in an airtight container.
  2. To decorate, begin with the chocolate frosting. Gently squeeze the decorating bag with an open star tip in a horizontal zigzag motion, moving from one end of the brownie to the other. Repeat this step for all football brownies.
  3. Add the football laces by piping the white icing with the No. 2 round decorating tip. Pipe a white lace partway up the middle vertically. (See photo for reference.) Then pipe out 3 short crossing laces.
  4. Plate and serve immediately. If storing, brownies should stay fresh in an airtight container for 3 days at room temperature, or 4 to 5 days in the fridge.

Photo: Ashley Smith  

Related Reading:
Kitchen Craft: Allergy-Friendly Chocolate Chip-Pumpkin Cookies
Kitchen Craft: Refreshing Watermelon Cake
Kitchen Craft: Top 9-Free Teal Pumpkin Chocolate Layer Cake

is the support group leader of NNMG Food Allergic Families of Los Angeles ( and a member of FAACT's Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Advisory Board.