α-Ketoacids (KAs) are widely used in chronic kidney disease (CKD), but their efficacy is not clear. Therefore, we conducted a systematic review of the benefits of KAs. Two reviewers independently searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, the Cochrane library (http://www.cochrane.org), CNKI, and Wan Fang databases from inception to May 31, 2016 for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) comparing KAs plus low protein diet (LPD) with LPD only on CKD patients. Statistical analyses were performed using both a random effects model and a fixed effects model with Rev Man 5.3, followed by sensitivity analysis. We identified 21 randomized controlled trials that enrolled a total of 1448 patients. 726 had received LPD plus KAs and 722 had received only LPD. Compared with simply using of LPD, combining with KAs could decrease serum creatinine (95% CI, 0.46–0.96; P<0.00001), serum cholesterol (95% CI, 0.24–0.77; P = 0.02), serum LDL cholesterol (95% CI, 0.12–0.54; P = 0.31), and serum triglyceride (95% CI, 0.28–0.83; P = 0.02) while increasing serum HDL cholesterol (95% CI, -1.73–0.07; P<0.00001). Likewise, a decrease in P3– (95% CI, 0.90–1.26; P<0.00001) and PTH (95% CI, 0.70–1.21; P = 0.007) were observed. No hypercalcemia and other ARD or toxicity was reported, which indicated the safety of KAs. Nevertheless, the studies were pooled with considerable heterogeneity. In patients with CKD, there was low-quality evidence suggesting that KAs may perform an additive effect on the improvement of renal function, lipid profile, as well as the correction of calcium-phosphate metabolism disorders. On account of the considerable heterogeneity of the meta-analysis and the costly price and adherence of KAs administration, KAs’ roles in the management of mild or moderate CKD patients may need more RCTs of large scale and high quality to confirm.