The brisk autumn weather may have us shivering from head to wool-socked toes... but that doesn't mean that food cart season is over. Fall is the prime time to try Portland's downtown soup carts, which are no doubt rejoicing over the return of sweater weather.

As many cash-strapped college students and budget diners know, soup is a highly versatile dish—and these carts' delicious array of hearty, healthy broths can accomodate any palate. Carnivores chow down on beeft borscht and lamb curry, fish fans find fancy clam chowder, and veggie eaters savor butternut squash and coconut lentil. Most soups are naturally gluten-free, and many pack powerful vitamins and nutrients (perfect for fending off that office bug that's always floating around).

Best of all, soup carts rotate their menus daily, making each visit a new adventure. Monday may feature curry pumpkin, while Tuesday brings chicken noodle, and Wednesday welcomes sausage gumbo.

Not satisfied by a liquid lunch? These carts also offer an array of fresh salads, hot and cold sandwiches, and divine desserts. Doesn't dipping hot grilled cheese into a cup of tomato bisque sounds like a perfect lunch right about now? 

Feast your eyes on our souperb slide show by clicking the photo above. Happy soup slurping!