Padma Lakshmi‘s unabashed love of food is clear in everything she eats in a day. While the Love, Loss, and What We Ate author does have a couple of staples in her diet, such as tea and apples with peanut butter, her eating regimen varies depending on whether or not she’s filming Top Chef.
When she’s working on the Bravo show, for example, Lakshmi, 49, tries not to eat too much food. “I want to give the contestants the full audience of my appetite, especially in the first half of the season,” she told Harper’s Bazaar in a video interview posted on June 18. “I have to, sometimes, try 19 different dishes in that quickfire alone.”
The India native added: “I usually try and take one or two bites. I try and chew slowly so I don’t have to take a third bite and I get the full mouth-feel experience of whatever they’re giving me.”
To “clean out” whatever food she’s eaten while working, Lakshmi whips up a “funky drink” made with green tea with honey, unsweetened cranberry juice, a vitamin C packet and a “heaping scoop of fiber powder.” However, if she doesn’t drink her custom beverage quickly enough, it morphs into “a sludge.”
“It’s important to drink that fast,” she reiterated. “It’s not very pleasant — this is not a treat — this is medicine for my body because I’ve had to eat whatever funky food I’ve had to eat. When you’re eating that much food, your system expects more food.”
Since the Easy Exotic author eats more food than she normally would while filming, she keeps her meals as simple as possible once her workday ends. “When I’m home, I don’t want to eat any of that fancy, over-seasoned, goopy food,” she said. “For dinner, I just eat a simple bowl of steamed basmati rice with dal or yellow lentils.”
Though Lakshmi admitted she’s not much of a dessert person, she does enjoy some flavorful dark chocolate from time to time. “There’s this chocolate that has cloves, cayenne and crystalized ginger,” she said. “My only real sweet treat on a regular basis will be half a bar of chocolate.”
Scroll down to see what else Lakshmi eats in a day!