The fight against malaria is increasingly threatened by failures in vector control due to growing insecticide resistance. This review examines the recent primary research that addresses the putative relationship between agricultural insecticide use and trends in insecticide resistance. To do so, descriptive evidence offered by the new research was categorized, and additional factors that impact the relationship between agricultural insecticide use and observed insecticide resistance in malaria vectors were identified. In 23 of the 25 relevant recent publications from across Africa, higher resistance in mosquito populations was associated with agricultural insecticide use. This association appears to be affected by crop type, farm pest management strategy and urban development.