March 10, 2014 11:00 AM

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty

Like mother, like daughter!

Padma Lakshmi says her daughter Krishna Thea, 4, has learned to be a healthy eater — most of the time.

“Well, she’s forcibly one. But she loves to eat healthy,” the Top Chef star told PEOPLE at the Endometriosis Foundation of America‘s 6th Annual Blossom Ball.

“She also loves her candy and chocolate — she doesn’t get to have it much.”

The Bravo star has also found a kitchen helper in Krishna.

“We cook every night,” she says. “We usually do a fresh meal for dinner, and then we usually have leftovers for lunch the next day.”

As for Krishna’s favorite dish? It may be the same as when she was little, but now she can help cook!

“She loves a lentil porridge that is basically just rice and lentils and lots of vegetables called khichdi. It’s really comfort food,” Lakshmi says.

When they’re not in the kitchen together, Krishna likes to lend a hand when Mom gets glammed up. “She does not help with makeup, no,” Lakshmi says, laughing.

“But she definitely likes pink, and she likes sparkling dresses and keeps checking with me and making sure she gets to wear all my dresses and shoes when she grows up.”

Krishna was actually a surprise for Lakshmi, who battled endometriosis for years before cofounding EFA in 2009.

“I was told I couldn’t have children,” she says. “I started the foundation two months before I got pregnant, and I think it was somehow maybe that good karma came back to me.”

— Jeff Nelson

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