Reba McEntire says Kelly Clarkson is the "happiest she’s ever seen her".

The country music singer is stepmom to Kelly's husband Brandon Blackstock and has known the 32-year-old star for years. The Since You've Been Gone singer gave birth to the couple's first child, River Rose, last year and has faced criticism for her weight in recent months. But Reba was quick to jump to her step-daughter-in-law's defence.

"I want everybody to know who's watching today that Kelly Clarkson is the happiest I've ever seen her," she told Access Hollywood Live. "I've known her since 2002 when she won the first American Idol and she asked me to come on the finale to sing with her because I was her idol… I have watched her grow, I have watched her become one of the greatest entertainers, the greatest singers, and grow with that."

Earlier this month Kelly received an apology from Fox News host Chris Wallace and radio host Mike Gallagher after the pair engaged in an on air discussion about the singer's weight. But Reba added that such comments have gone over the star's head.

"She's had ups and downs, but she's as happy as she's ever been as long as I've known her," the 60-year-old added. "That's all I'm gonna say about it."

Kelly has spoken out about her figure in recent weeks, after giving birth to her daughter in June last year.

“We are who we are. Whatever size, and it doesn’t meant that we’re gonna be that forever,” she said during an appearance on Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show.