Diabetes mellitus (DM) is the leading cause of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Optimal glycemic control contributes to improved outcomes in patients with DM, particularly for microvascular damage, but blood glucose levels are too variable to provide an accurate assessment and instead markers averaging long-term glycemic load are used. The most established glycemic biomarker of long-term glycemic control is HbA1c. Nevertheless, HbA1c has pitfalls that limit its accuracy to estimate glycemic control, including the presence of altered red blood cell survival, hemoglobin glycation and suboptimal performance of HbA1c assays. Alternative methods to evaluate glycemic control in patients with DM include glycated albumin, fructosamine, 1–5 anhydroglucitol, continuous glucose measurement, self-monitoring of blood glucose and random blood glucose concentration measurements. Accordingly, our aim was to review the advantages and pitfalls of these methods in the context of CKD.