At less than 6 months old, even Mindy Kaling's daughter Katherine knows that Oprah Winfrey is a big deal

By Jen Juneau
June 04, 2018 11:10 AM

Even Mindy Kaling‘s infant daughter knows when she’s in the presence of greatness.

During a Monday appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, the Ocean’s 8 star recalled a memorable time when her now-5-month-old daughter Katherine Swati didn’t so much as make a peep while visiting Oprah Winfrey‘s house when the latter hosted a screen for her film A Wrinkle in Time, also starring Kaling and Reese Witherspoon.

“I was scared because I had to bring my baby with me because she was so little at the time, and she’d been really fussy the whole way. And I was like, ‘Oh my God, am I gonna be the person that brings a screaming baby into Oprah’s cathedral of beauty and art?’ ” jokes Kaling, 38.

“The minute we went in, I was like, ‘Katherine, please, please. You have no idea how high the stakes are right now,’ ” she adds. “And we walked into the door, and her eyes went wide and she stopped crying, like she knew she was in Oprah’s house. And then she was just coyly smiling and being adorable for the next four hours.”

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Mindy Kaling
Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.

The Mindy Project creator says her daughter is “a great baby,” but admits she wasn’t a “kid person” before becoming a mom.

“I was always the person who, when I saw a 1-year-old baby … I’d be like, ‘Hello, young man,’ ” she reveals, miming shaking hands, to the laughter of the audience. “Shaking hands with an infant.”

Mindy Kaling
Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.

Motherhood has been relatively smooth sailing so far for the star. The “hardest part,” Kaling says, has been going back to her pre-pregnancy diet — something she hasn’t done as of yet.

“When I was really pregnant — when I came to see you last — I was just eating whatever I wanted. Beause when you’re pregnant you can just say it’s cravings, like, ‘I needed to have 11 cupcakes because of my pregnancy cravings,’ ” she jokes.

“But I haven’t altered that that much since having the kid,” Kaling explains. “It’s not normal to be not pregnant and have a birthday cake on Tuesday afternoon when it’s not your birthday.”

Ocean’s 8 hits theaters Friday.