Make your nursery a leader in healthy eating and practice

Level 3 CACHE-accredited award

Introduced in 2019, Early Years Chef Academy trains Early Years chefs to ensure more children get the healthy, nutritious food they need to grow and learn.  

We train chefs from all Early Years Settings to be experts in child nutrition and to help children, staff and parents build healthy habits for life. 

Download the course guide to find out more.

“It is great that finally there is training available that focuses on Early Years chefs.”

Nursery Manager of external chef

Course details

The course is delivered in weekly interactive online sessions via Microsoft Teams and is therefore suitable for Early Years chefs working anywhere.  

Course length: 15 modules taught over 4.5 months, made up of 2 hour sessions per week.

Dates: 5th June until 16th October 2024.

Timings: every Wednesday afternoon, 2pm until 4pm.

Apply now


Entry requirements

Any chefs or people working with fresh produce in a kitchen in any Early Years setting can take part.

Nurseries need to be invested in improving their food, the health of their children and empowering their chef to help make the nursery a community hub for good practice.

Nurseries will need to provide cover for learners during their weekly sessions over the course of five months. Course participants must have access to a laptop or tablet.



Full price £1200
Charity/non-profit nurseries £800
Nurseries offering the 2-year-old funding entitlement £800
Charity and the 2-year-old funding entitlement £400

A £100 deposit will be required to secure your place upon application.

What should you expect from the course?

Participants can expect to become experts in everything from portion sizes to weaning and from menu planning to managing allergies.

We give chefs the tools and confidence to help children, nurseries and wider communities embed healthy, lifelong eating habits.

The training covers practical areas, such as adapting dishes to make them healthier, running exciting food-related activities with children and offering tips to staff and parents, so they can make healthy and delicious meals without breaking the bank.

"Our Chef appears energised, motivated and excited after attending this training"

Nursery Manager

What is the impact of the course?

So far, our external evaluation of the course found that:

  • Chefs found the training useful and worthwhile
  • Chefs reported improved understanding around child nutrition
  • Chefs reported improved confidence in encouraging healthy choices
  • Chefs felt the training had improved their status
  • Chefs were interacting more with children, other staff, and parents around healthy eating
  • Expected improvements to children’s diets have started to materialise

Explore the course’s impact

Play video

"It really is a worthwhile course"

Meet Janet, Senior Chef at Stockwell Gardens Nursery and Pre-School. She tells us about what she learned and the value she gained from the LEYF Chef Academy.


Contact us

Please get in touch with any questions or queries you may have, at or on 020 7834 8679.

Apply now

Please ensure you have read the course guide before completing the application form below. We will be in touch shortly to confirm your chef’s place on the course.



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