Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is the most common malignant kidney tumor and has a high incidence rate. Circular RNAs (circRNAs) are noncoding RNAs with widespread distribution and diverse cellular functions. They are highly stable and have organ- and tissue-specific expression patterns. CircRNAs have essential functions as microRNA sponges, RNA-binding protein- and transcriptional regulators, and protein translation templates. Recent reports have shown that circRNAs are abnormally expressed in RCC and act as important regulators of RCC carcinogenesis and progression. Moreover, circRNAs have emerged as potential biomarkers for RCC diagnosis and prognosis and targets for developing new treatments. However, further studies are needed to better understand the functions of circRNAs in RCC. In this review, we summarize and discuss the recent research progress on RCC-associated circRNAs, with a focus on their potential for RCC diagnosis and targeted therapy.