Background: Human landing catches (HLC) are an entomological collection technique in which humans are used as attractants to capture medically relevant host-seeking mosquitoes. The use of this method has been a topic of extensive debate for decades mainly due to ethical concerns. Many alternatives to HLC have been proposed; however, no quantitative review comparing HLC to alternative trapping methods has been conducted. Here, we present a meta-analysis of published literature on HLC and alternative trapping methods for outdoor Anopheles spp. collections. Methods: A total of 58 comparisons across 12 countries were identified. We conducted a meta-analysis comparing treatment effects of HLC against alternative traps. To explain heterogeneity, three moderators were chosen for analysis: trap type, location of study, and species captured. Results : According to our model, tent-based traps captured significantly more Anopheles than HLC (95% CI: -.9065, -.0544). Alternative traps in Africa captured more mosquitoes than outdoor HLC (-2.8750, -.0294) and alternative traps overall captured significantly more Anopheles gambiae s.l. than HLC (-4.4613, -.2473). A meta-regression showed that up to 55.77% of the total heterogeneity found can be explained by a linear combination of the three moderators included in our model and the interaction between trap type and species . Subset analysis on An. gambiae s.l. showed that light traps specifically captured more of this species than HLC (-18.3751, -1.0629). Discussion: Alternative traps captured more An. gambiae than HLC, however, we found no differences for capture of An. funestus s.l. Publication bias was found with an overrepresentation in the literature of results indicating that alternative traps are superior to HLC. Trap comparisons in the literature most commonly use total Anopheles collected/night as a metric for comparison, which may not be the optimal. These results identify trends in the literature which can be used to identify Anopheles collection alternatives to HLC. However, significant heterogeneity suggests a broader challenge with the literature. Further standardization and specific question-driven trap evaluations that consider target vector species and the vector control landscape are needed toallow for robust meta-analyses with less heterogeneity and to develop data-driven decision-making tools for malaria vector surveillance and control.