The TV host stunned at Bravo's Top Chef and Project Runway "A Night of Food and Fashion" FYC red carpet in Los Angeles on Tuesday, just a few weeks after returning from a fun-filled trip to Paris with her 9-year-old daughter, Krishna.
"It's hard [to balance everything]. But, you know, it's worth it. Everything is really nice right now and I'm very lucky, so I can't complain about anything," she told ET's Katie Krause at the event.
Lakshmi welcomed Krishna in February 2010 with venture capitalist Adam Dell. She's not quite thinking about throwing her daughter a big 10th birthday party -- "We'll see, if she's good," she joked -- but is definitely enjoying seeing her daughter grow up.
"[What I love about motherhood is] how much fun it is and how I never thought I could be loved like this or love someone so much," she gushed. "And just the relationship. The relationship that you build and that you see grow as this person blossoms is quite humbling and really beautiful."
Lakshmi herself will celebrate a big birthday next year -- her 50th! But as she told ET, aging doesn't scare her one bit. "I'm happy where I am. I wouldn't be any other age. I wouldn't go back to my 20s if you paid me. I'm much happier now. I am more accomplished than I was in my 20s, so that's good too," she said.
"I think I'd like to extend the work I've been doing as an ambassador for the ACLU on immigration and I think I look forward to my role as a UN Goodwill Ambassador, that's new," she continued of what she hopes to cross off her list before her milestone birthday. "I'm also looking forward to growing with the show. I think it's wonderful to see that our fans are so loyal and so cool, so an event like this is really fun, because you get to meet your fans. And it's nice."
Lakshmi has hosted Top Chef since season two of the reality cooking show, which premiered in 2006. Sixteen seasons in, the series is still at the top of its game, and an awards contender.
"I think [we've lasted] because we have a great group of people who produce the show. They work really hard to keep the show fresh, and we move cities and stuff, and I think also the stars of the show change every season," Lakshmi shared. "We get to have these new, talented chefs and discover people or revisit people, so I think that has a lot to do with it."
"I hope [it will last forever], but I don't know," she added. "I think we'll see."