Who can enter

Apprentice and junior chefs, who are:

  • Australian or New Zealand residents
  • Aged from 16 and under 25 years on 31st December 2024
  • Currently or recently employed (last 12 months) in the culinary industry (chef, cook, apprentice) or studying a course relevant to the culinary industry full time


Key Dates

11th March: Online Entry Opens

6th May: Online Entry Closes

May-July: Round 2 Regional and metro cook offs

31st July: Regional & Metro cook off winners published on goldenchefs.com.au within one week of the relevant Round 2 Regional and Metro cook-off date

2nd – 3rd September: Round 3 Grand Final cook offs

4th September: Industry Awards Night




How to enter



Complete and submit the REGISTRATION FORM. You’ll then be directed to a page that will confirm your successful registration. As part of your entry requirements, you will need to create a maximum 45 sec video for us to get to know you better (click the link to find out what you need to do)




So long as you’ve completed the registration form, uploaded your video, and meet the entry requirements, you’ll get to cook-off against other chefs at the regional heats (between May – July) and will be notified by 22nd May of your assigned regional or metro cook-off.



The top 12 winning chefs from Round 2 across Australia and New Zealand will then go on to compete in Round 3: The Grand Final Cook-off, which will be held in the ACF Culinary Challenge Arena at Fine Food Australia in Melbourne, VIC between 2nd & 3rd September 2024.

The finalists will be judged by a panel of Australian Culinary Federation & NZChefs accredited judges.

The Nestlé Golden Chef of the Year & other category winners will be announced at an Industry Awards night on 4th September 2023.

Finalists need to be available from 31st August – 4th September, 2024 inclusive. Reasonable travel costs including accommodation will be provided. Note: Date/location is subject to change.


At the grand finals, one chef will take out the Nestlé Golden Chef of the Year title and be awarded an International culinary travel and work experience valued at AUD$10,000.