Heat 1 ½ tablespoons of oil in a Dutch oven or stock pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds, stirring. Add the quinoa and cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes.
Add the water and salt, raise the heat, and bring to a boil. Once the mixture boils, cover the pot and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for 15 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed. Remove from heat, stir in the cranberries, replace the lid, and let sit for 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
Add the pistachios, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Taste and add some salt and pepper if desired. Stir in the chopped chives and serve.