Plant-based Complex Cooking Training Scheme [Level 4]

Study Options



25 weeks


Level 4

Advance your plant-based cooking creations

Discover how to create healthy and delicious plant-based dishes that go beyond the standard vegetarian fare. During this course you will develop your knowledge of plant nutrition, indigenous foods and foraging, and advanced plant-based menus that will delight the most voracious of carnivores!

This Training Scheme course will allow your progression from Level 3 to 4, further increasing industry and community plant-based cooking skills, catering to the increasing trend for plant-based food. It will enhance the capability of staff in local Cafés and Restaurants and interested members of the community as they work through edible plant preparation, complex cooking techniques, plant-based menus and nutritional features of plants. 

This complex plant-based Level 4 Training Scheme course focuses on crafting excellent, complex dishes solely from plants, providing an advanced repertoire of product knowledge, skills and recipes. The course is designed to provide complex specialised culinary education for the growing demand for vegan, vegetarian and plant-based restaurants and products.

NB: The term ‘complex’ is standard for Level 4 Cookery in New Zealand, with the definition in the NZ Certificate in Cookery [Level 4] being: “Complex refers to the use of an intricate combination of preparation techniques, cooking methods, and processes, using fresh ingredients, differing flavours and textures, and innovative finishing and presentation techniques”.

Register your interest now by contacting the Programme Secretary, Margaret Skews at or on 06 830 1421.


$390.00 (NZ Residents price)


The course will start on Wednesday, 11 May 2022 and will end on Wednesday, 16 November 2022.

It will run 5.00pm – 9.00pm, every Wednesday (except during term breaks).


The Plant-based Complex Cooking Training Scheme [Level 4] aligns traditional culinary techniques with plant-based ingredients.

The course will apply the principles of complex plant-based dietary requirements, culinary preparations, and cooking methods.

The programme covers five modules and your learning will culminate in the creation of a plant-based degustation meal at EIT’s Scholars Restaurant for family and friends.

You are welcome to make an appointment to discuss your study options with our staff and to view our facilities.

Module 1 - Professional Culinary Skills and Product Knowledge

Module 2 - The Art and Science of Fermentation

Module 3 - Sustainability and Seasonality

Module 4 - Complex Desserts and Pastry

Module 5 - Complex Production and Practical Application

Future Career Opportunities and Outcomes

Your study pathway could include moving onto:

  • NZ Certificate in Cookery [Level 4], followed by
  • NZ Diploma in Cookery (Advanced) [Level 5]

The Plant-based Complex Cooking Training Scheme [Level 4] course offers you enhanced employment opportunities in specialist restaurants, cafés, catering and kitchens. 


Entry Criteria

Be able to demonstrate introductory cookery skills in one of the following ways:

  • Achieved Plant-based Cooking Training Scheme [Level 3]; or
  • Achieved NZ Certificate in Cookery [Level 3]; or
  • Achieved NZ Certificate in Hospitality [Level 2]; or
  • Demonstrate introductory cookery knowledge and skills, including knife handling and food safety. Demonstration of knowledge and skills can be either through study at EIT or another institution, or practical work in the hospitality or similar industry that includes a focus on plant-based.


Interviews will only be required in “out of the ordinary” applications. This will be conducted by the Programme Coordinator and overseen by the Head of School.

English Language Entry Requirements

Applicants for whom English is not their first language must have an acceptable level of English language fluency prior to enrolment in the programme. This may be demonstrated in a variety of ways, including successful study of a programme in which English was the language of instruction, completion of a New Zealand Certificate in English Language (Level 3 with an Academic endorsement), approved scores on IELTS tests (Academic score of 5.5 with no band score lower than 5) or completion of accepted international equivalents.

Entry with Credit

For information and enquiries about Recognition of Prior Learning and Cross Credit please contact Celia Kurta on 06 830 1146.

This pathway of study leads to the award of nationally approved qualifications.  These qualifications may be taught at a number of other tertiary institutes around New Zealand.  If you were to transfer to one of those other institutes you may be granted academic credit for some of the courses completed but this is at the discretion of the other institute.

Please note: Fees are not transferable between institutes.


EIT offers a variety of scholarships across various subjects and programme levels.  Some scholarships are based on your age, some are specific to the subject you want to study.  Not all scholarships are based on your academic ability and anyone wanting to study should investigate what scholarships are available to them.  

You can find a list of EIT scholarships here however there are many more scholarships offered nationally.  Information about these is on an database called “givME”. givME is accessible at EIT or at some public libraries. If you would like to come to EIT to look through the giveME database don’t hesitate to contact or call in for a chat.

Academic Learning Services

Academic Learning Services is here to assist you on your journey towards the successful completion of your studies at EIT. Our aim is for you to become confident, competent and independent learners.

We have dedicated advisors who can assist with your learning.

Find out more:

Hawke’s Bay Campus
Tairāwhiti Campus