The Aussies did enough in Brisbane on Saturday as they hung on after a late fightback from the All Blacks.
New Zealand, who had already retained the trophy in August, were a point behind at half-time after Australia's strong start.
Marika Koroibete's try and Reece Hodge's form with the boot were enough to give Australia the advantage going into the break.
Hodge and Israel Folau also crossed over but New Zealand scored two late tries themselves.
Hodge then landed a penalty to ensure his team won 23-18 at Suncorp Stadium.
Speaking after the full-time whistle, captain Michael Hooper admitted it was a huge relief to get over the line.
He told reporters: "Overwhelming sense of satisfaction. We didn't win any comps tonight but it goes a long way to building confidence in this team."